Alterations in the Rat Serum Proteome Induced by Prepubertal Exposure to Bisphenol A and Genistein

Humans are exposed to an array of chemicals via the food, drink and air, including a significant number that can mimic endogenous hormones. One such chemical is Bisphenol A (BPA), a synthetic chemical that has been shown to cause developmental alterations and to predispose for mammary cancer in rodent models. In contrast, the phytochemical genistein has been reported to suppress chemically induced mammary cancer in rodents, and Asians ingesting a diet high in soy containing genistein have lower incidence of breast and prostate cancers. In this study, we sought to: (1) identify protein biomarkers of susceptibility from blood sera of rats exposed prepubertally to BPA or genistein using Isobaric Tandem Mass Tags quantitative mass spectrometry (TMT-MS) combined with MudPIT technology and, (2) explore the relevance of these proteins to carcinogenesis. Prepubertal exposures to BPA and genistein resulted in altered expression of 63 and 28 proteins in rat sera at postnatal day (PND) 21, and of 9 and 18 proteins in sera at PND35, respectively. This study demonstrates the value of using quantitative proteomic techniques to explore the effect of chemical exposure on the rat serum proteome and its potential for unraveling cellular targets altered by BPA and genistein involved in carcinogenesis.