Asian Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology & Environmental Sciences Paper

Vol 17, Issue 4, 2015; Page No.(937-945)

MUTAGENICITY TESTING USING AMES TEST: AN OVERVIEW

NUR FATHIN ALIA CHE WAHAB, THIRUMULU PONNURAJ KANNAN, ZULIANI MAHMOOD, ISMAIL AB. RAHMAN AND HANAFI ISMAIL

Abstract

Mutagenicity is an important factor that should be investigated in any chemical compound in order to avoid adverse effects. Practically, mutagenicity testing is a must before the chemicals compounds are applied for medical purposes. The Ames test that is also known as bacterial reverse mutation assay is a sensitive and simple method for mutagenicity detection in a wide range of chemical substances. Ever since the first description about this method in 1973, this test has been applied in the mutagenicity testing of many a substances and compounds which can be found in the vast array of articles published in this arena. Since then, the method has been improvised and improved over time and standard international guidelines also have been established for the uniformity on applications in research and organizations. The effectiveness of this test has been proved by many researchers. In this paper, we review the history, advantages and the limitations of this test. Information regarding the test principles and some important factors such as metabolic activation system and bacterial tester strains are also discussed in this paper. The review also describes in brief on how the Ames assay is conducted in the laboratory to detect the compounds that induce mutagenesis. Overall, this paper aims to give a broad overview about the Ames test and its applicability.

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