Journal Article

Cytokine production by alveolar macrophages is down regulated by the α-methylhydroxylation pathway of 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK)

Léa-Isabelle Proulx, André Castonguay and Elyse Y. Bissonnette

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 25, issue 6, pages 997-1003
Published in print June 2004 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online June 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI:
Cytokine production by alveolar macrophages is down regulated by the α-methylhydroxylation pathway of 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK)

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics


Show Summary Details


NNK, a nicotine-derived nitrosamine, is a potent lung carcinogen that generates electrophilic intermediates capable of damaging DNA. The effects of NNK on the immune response, which may facilitate lung carcinogenesis, are poorly understood. Alveolar macrophages (AM), a key cell in the maintenance of lung homeostasis, metabolize NNK via two major metabolic activation pathways: α-methylhydroxylation and α-methylenehydroxylation. We have shown previously that NNK inhibits the production of interleukin-12 (IL-12) and tumor necrosis factor (TNF), but stimulates the production of IL-10 and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) by AM. In the present study, we investigated the contribution of each activation pathway in the modulation of AM function. We used two precursors, 4-[(acetoxymethyl)-nitrosamino]-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNKOAc) and N-nitro(acetoxymethyl)methylamine (NDMAOAc), which generate the reactive electrophilic intermediates [4-(3-pyridyl)-4-oxo-butanediazohydroxide and methanediazohydroxide, respectively] in high yield and exclusively. Rat AM cell line, NR8383, was stimulated and treated with different concentrations of NNKOAc or NDMAOAc (12, 25 and 50 µM). Mediator release was measured in cell-free supernatants. NNKOAc significantly inhibited the production of IL-10, IL-12, TNF and nitric oxide but increased the release of PGE2 and cyclooxygenase-2 expression suggesting that the α-methylhydroxylation pathway might be responsible for NNK modulation of AM cytokine release. In contrast, NDMAOAc did not modulate AM mediator production. However, none of these precursors, alone or in combination, could explain the stimulation of AM IL-10 production by NNK. Our results suggest that the α-methylhydroxylation of NNK leading to DNA pyridyloxobutylation also modulates cytokine production in NNK-treated AM.

Keywords: AM, alveolar macrophages; BCG, Bacille Calmette-Guerin; COX, cyclooxygenase; IL, Interleukin; KA, keto acid; KAL, keto alcohol; LPS, lipopolysaccharide; NDMAOAc, nitroso(acetoxymethyl)methylamine; NO, nitric oxide; NNAL, 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanol; NNK, 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone; NNKOAc, 4-(acetoxy-methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone; PGE2, prostaglandin-E2

Journal Article.  5358 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.