4-quinolone antibiotics: Positive genotoxic screening tests despite an apparent lack of mutation induction

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The effects of different 4-quinolone antibiotic derivatives (4-Qs) in a number of short-term tests commonly employed for the evaluation of genetic toxicity were studied. Incorporation of [3H]thymidine into mitogen-stimulated peripheral blood lymphocytes was strongly enhanced at a low concentration (1.56 μg/ml) for most of the tested 4-Qs, whereas DNA strand breakage in lymphoblastoid cells was evident only for ciprofloxacin (10 μg/ml and upwards), ofloxacin (80 μg/ml) and norfloxacin (160 μg/ml). Ciphrofloxacin induced a significant amount of unscheduled DNA synthesis, but was found to be negative in a shuttle vector plasmid mutation test. Ciprofloxacin (80 μg/ml) did not inhibit enzymes involved in the early steps of pyrimidine biosynthesis. Cell growth was slightly depressed at a concentration of 20 μg/ml, becoming marked at 80 μg/ml. In conculsion, this study seeks to contribute to an improved evaluation of genotoxic screening test data, by focuding attention on the conflicting effects imposed by the 4-Qs on a battery of such tests.


External organisations
  • CNRS-Luminy
  • Skåne University Hospital
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Microbiology in the medical area


  • 4-Quinolones, DNA repair, DNA synthesis, Gene mutation, Genetic toxicity
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-180
JournalMutation Research - Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1989 Jan 1
Publication categoryResearch