Fungal volatile organic compounds (VOCs) comprise a group of compounds commonly found in damp or water-damaged indoor places affecting air quality. Indoor fungal pollution is a severe threat to human health, contributing to the onset of allergic diseases. The compound 1-octen-3-ol, known as “mushroom alcohol”, is the most abundant VOC and confers the characteristic mold odor. Exposure to 1-octen-3-ol induces inflammatory markers and episodes of allergic rhinitis and conjunctivitis; however, the effects of this compound towards mitochondria are fairly known. The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of 1-octen-3-ol on inflammatory targets and on mitochondrial morphology and bioenergetic rate in D. melanogaster. Drosophilas were exposed by inhalation to 2.5 μL/L and 5 μL/L of 1-octen-3-ol for 24 h. Observation showed a decreasing in the survival and locomotor ability of flies. Superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity was induced whereas Catalase (CAT) activity was inhibited. Analysis of the mitochondria respiration, detected inhibition of complex I and II in the electron transport chain and a decreased bioenergetic rate. Electronic microscopy provided morphological insights of the mitochondrial status in which a disarrangement in mitochondrial cristae profile was observed. 1-Octen-3-ol induced increased activity of caspase 3/7 and ERK phosphorylation. The mRNA relative steady-state levels of p38 and JNK were down-regulated, whereas NF-κB and p53 were up-regulated. In parallel, nitrite levels were induced in relation to the non-exposed group. These findings point to the mitochondria as a crucial target for the toxicity of 1-octen-3-ol in parallel with activation of pro-inflammatory factors and apoptotic signaling pathway cascade.
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