Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Biological Sciences


Biology, Molecular.


Heath, D.




In this study, it is hypothesized that the apoptotic pathways in the brown bullhead are altered by the presence of PAHs with a final outcome of elevated tumor formation. To evaluate the impact of PAHs on the apoptotic process, three separate, but related, studies were completed to characterise apoptosis in brown bullhead. First, the impact of known apoptotic inducers (staurosporine, cycloheximide, and TNF-alpha) on cell death in brown bullhead fibroblasts was characterized (Chapter 1). Secondly, fibroblasts were exposed to PAHs to examine how exposure to an environmentally relevant genotoxic substance alters the apoptotic pathway (Chapter 2). Finally, bullheads from various areas of the Detroit River, with a range of levels of persistent PAHs, were collected and tested for differences in the amount and regulation of apoptosis among sites (Chapter 3). To accomplish the objectives of this study, DNA fragmentation was examined, a late stage indicator of apoptosis, by utilizing immunohistochemistry methods (TUNEL) and novel bullhead genetic markers were isolated and developed to evaluate differences in the transcription of apoptotic regulatory genes and to quantify apoptosis in the various studies. (Abstract shortened by UMI.) Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 42-05, page: 1629. Advisers: Daniel D. Heath; Andrew Hubberstey. Thesis (M.Sc.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2003.