Assessment of genotoxic and antigenotoxic activities of artepillin C in somatic cells of Drosophila melanogaster

Food Chem Toxicol. 2017 Mar;101:48-54. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2017.01.005. Epub 2017 Jan 6.


The significant contents of artepillin C (AC) in green propolis have prompted research on the biological activities of the compound. The present study evaluated the activity of this phenolic compound on DNA, assessing its genotoxic and antigenotoxic potentials in the somatic mutation and recombination test in Drosophila melanogaster. The standard (ST) and high-bioactivation (HB) crosses were used in the assessment of genotoxic potential, since they express cytochrome P450 metabolization enzymes differently. In the 0.1-1.6 mM concentration range, AC did not have any genotoxic action in either cross. Antigenotoxic potential was investigated using the ST cross. In co- and post-treatment protocols, AC 0.4, 0.8, and 1.6 mM did not modulate mutagenic action of ethyl methanesulphonate. However, though it did not influence the frequency of damage induced by mitomycin C in co-treatment, AC reduced genotoxicity of the mutagen when administered after damage, but only at 0.4 mM. This modulation is associated with the reduction of genetic damage caused by recombinational events. The results of the present study and literature findings indicate that the various responses elicited by AC, namely induction of DNA damage, production of genetic lesions, or activation of DNA repair mechanisms are functions of AC concentration.

Keywords: DNA damage; Mutation; Propolis; SMART assay; Somatic recombination.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA Damage / drug effects*
  • DNA Damage / genetics
  • Drosophila melanogaster / drug effects*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics
  • Mutagenicity Tests / methods
  • Nucleic Acid Synthesis Inhibitors / toxicity
  • Phenylpropionates / toxicity*
  • Recombination, Genetic / genetics*


  • Nucleic Acid Synthesis Inhibitors
  • Phenylpropionates
  • artepillin C