In vivo visual reporter system for detection of estrogen-like substances by transgenic medaka

Kanta Kurauchi, Yoshitsugu Nakaguchi, Makiko Tsutsumi, Hirosi Hori, Ryo Kurihara, Shinya Hashimoto, Ryoko Ohnuma, Yoshikazu Yamamoto, Sumiko Matsuoka, Shin'Ichiro Kawai, Takashi Hirata, Masato Kinoshita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (Scopus)


Detection of endocrine disrupting chemicals, in particular, environmental estrogens with living organisms, has many advantages if compared to chemical analysis. The screening of novel pollutants with meaningful endpoints, the integration of uptake, bioconcentration, and excretion as well as the evaluation of endocrine disrupting effects with respect to toxicity require in vivo biotests for estrogen-like substances (ELSs). Critical disadvantages of whole organism biotests are their low sensitivity and the need for laborious and time-consuming work. To overcome these problems, we have developed a transgenic medaka strain harboring the green fluorescence protein (GFP) gene driven by choriogenin H gene regulatory elements. Choriogenin H is an egg envelope protein induced by estrogens in the liver. With yolk sac larvae of this strain, GFP induction in liver was observed 24 h after onset of aqueous exposure to 0.63 nM 17β-estradiol (E2), 0.34 nM ethynylestradiol, or 14.8 nM estrone. Furthermore, concentrated sewage treatment effluent induced GFP expression. Comparison of E2 equivalents estimated by GFP-induction in transgenic medaka, a YES assay, and GC/MS showed detection limits in the same order of magnitude. These results indicated that the sensitivity of the transgenic medaka strain was sufficient for application as an alternative model in monitoring environmental water samples for ELSs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2762-2768
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 15-04-2005
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry


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