Embryonic and cellular effects after exposure to commonly consumed energy drinks

Research output: Contribution to conferencePresentation


The aim of this study was to examine the effects of popular “energy drinks,” on both an embryological and cellular level. 1-day old chick embryos treated with 5-Hour Energy and Monster Nitrous for 10 days showed a decrease in beak length (p<0.05) and an overall decrease in body size and limb lengths compared to control embryos (p<0.05). The cellular effects of energy drinks were also investigated through treatment of neuronal cultures from embryonic chick forebrains and Madin-Darby kidney (MDCK) cells. Exposure of neurons resulted in a dose-dependent decrease in the number and length of neuronal processes. At a concentration of 0.1 milliliter of energy drink per milliliter of media, MAP2 staining showed that neurons had an increase in cells with three or fewer processes from 18% in controls to 59±2% (5-Hour Energy) and 58±11% (Monster Nitrous). MDCK cells exposed to energy drinks showed a loss of arrangement of actin bundles within the cells. We are currently exploring the combinatorial effects of individual ingredients in these energy drinks to further characterize these effects. The Saint Mary’s College of California School of Science and the Robert J. Summers Scholarship have supported this research.

Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011
EventFASEB J -
Duration: Mar 29 2012 → …


ConferenceFASEB J
Period3/29/12 → …


  • Biology
  • Life Sciences

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