Pregnant Wistar WU rats were administered PCBs (0, 5 or 25 mg Aroclor 1254 per kg body weight) by gavage on day 10 to 16 of gestation. Levels of biogenic amines were measured in the lateral olfactory tract, prefrontal cortex, striatum, hippocampus and hypothalamus in male and female offspring 21 and 90 days after birth. 5-Hydroxyindole acetic acid (5-HIAA) concentrations and the ratio of 5-HIAA/5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT, serotonin) were significantly increased in the lateral olfactory tract, prefrontal cortex and hippocampus on postnatal day 90 in male and female offspring following maternal PCB treatment. No effects were observed on regional brain levels of dopamine, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, norepinephrine and homovanillic acid. The results indicate that pre- and postnatal exposure to Aroclor 1254 results in regionally specific long-term alterations in the serotonergic system.
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