Journal Article

Effect of tamoxifen feeding on metabolic activation of tamoxifen by the liver of the Rhesus monkey: Does liver accumulation of inhibitory metabolities protect from tamoxifen-dependent genotoxicity and cancer?

Adriana Comoglio, Anthony H. Gibbs, Ian N.H. White, Timothy Gant, Elizabeth A. Martin, Lewis L. Smith, Silvana Ricci Gamalero and Francesco DeMatteis

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 17, issue 8, pages 1687-1693
Published in print August 1996 | ISSN: 0143-3334
e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/carcin/17.8.1687
Effect of tamoxifen feeding on metabolic activation of tamoxifen by the liver of the Rhesus monkey: Does liver accumulation of inhibitory metabolities protect from tamoxifen-dependent genotoxicity and cancer?

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Tamoxifen induces hepatocellular carcinomas in rats and is converted by rat hepatic cytochrome P450 enzymes into reactive metabolites capable of forming adducts with nucleic acids, proteins and chromosomal aberrations. In rats tamoxifen has also been shown to induce liver cytochrome P450 enzymes, to stimulate its own metabolism leading to greater covalent binding and to induce a higher degree of unscheduled DNA synthesis. This suggests that, at least in the rat, a sensitive species, tamoxifen may contribute significantly to its genotoxic and carcinogenic potential, by assisting its own metabolic activation. We have now investigated the effect of feeding tamoxifen to male and female Rhesus monkeys. A marked induction of the hepatic cytochrome(s) P450 is found in the monkey but, in spite of this, the in vitro metabolism of 7-ethoxy-resorufin by microsomes from treated animals is markedly inhibited and so is the dealkylation of two other 7-alkoxy-resorufin substrates. Evidence is presented for the accumulation in the liver of monkeys treated with tamoxifen of a powerful inhibitor of drug metabolism, and the inhibitor is identified as a metabolite of tamoxifen, its N,N-didesmethyl derivative. The level of 32P-postlabelled DNA adducts was considerably higher in rats given tamoxifen than in similarly treated monkeys. Also, whereas rats responded to tamoxifen treatment with a marked increase in covalent binding to microsomal protein, in the monkeys, where accumulation of the inhibitory metabolite in the microsomal fraction was also seen, convalent binding was not greater with microsomes from treated animals than in the corresponding controls. N, N-Didesmethyl-tamoxifen, added in vitro to human and rat microsomes, reduced significantly the extent of covalent binding, suggesting that the accumulation of the metabolite observed in the liver of primates may discourage the cytochrome P450-dependent conversion of tamoxifen into reactive derivatives and in this way protect against the formation of adducts. This mechanism may also contribute to protecting the primate against liver cancer.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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