Effect of environmental carcinogens and other chemicals on murine alpha/beta interferon production

Environ Res. 1983 Aug;31(2):355-61. doi: 10.1016/0013-9351(83)90013-0.


Mouse embryo fibroblast cultures were pretreated with a variety of chemicals found in the environment. After chemical treatment, polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid was added to the cultures to induce alpha/beta interferon. Pretreatment of the cell cultures with the chemical carcinogens chloroform and beta-propiolactone severely inhibited the production of alpha/beta interferon, while pretreatment of the cell cultures with their poorly or noncarcinogenic analogs 1,1,1-trichloroethane and gamma-butyrolactone had no effect on interferon induction. Pretreatment of the cell cultures with the possible carcinogen diethylstilbestrol had no effect on alpha/beta interferon induction. Pretreatment of the cells with the poor or noncarcinogens pyrene and ascorbic acid did not effect interferon induction; in fact, treatment with ascorbic acid may have enhanced interferon production. These results augment previous findings that most potent carcinogens can inhibit the induction of alpha/beta interferon.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carcinogens, Environmental / pharmacology*
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Interferon Type I / analysis
  • Interferon Type I / biosynthesis*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C3H
  • Viral Plaque Assay


  • Carcinogens, Environmental
  • Interferon Type I