S-methyl cysteine sulphoxide (SMCSO) and its metabolite methyl methane thiosulphinate (MMTSO), both naturally occurring compounds present in Brassica vegetables, were investigated for their putative ability to inhibit benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P)-induced genotoxicity in ICR mice. The mouse bone marrow micronucleus assay was used as an indicator of in vivo genotoxicity. Doses of 0.5 mmol SMCSO and 0.05mmol MMTSO per kg body weight significantly inhibited the formation of B[a]P-induced micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes (MPCEs) by 31 and 33%, respectively, compared with control mice. Two higher doses of MMTSO (0.5 and 1.0 mmol/kg body weight) administered to mice displayed severe acute toxicity. The inhibition of experimental genotoxicity by these two organosulphur compounds present in Brassica may, in part, be responsible for the anticarcinogenic effect of these vegetables.
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Acknowledgements--The research described here was supported in part by the NIEHS Toxicology Training (grant ES07052) and the USDA (Hatch project 623478).