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Biochemical and biophysical research communications

Estrogenic activity of an environmental pollutant, 2-nitrofluorene, after metabolic activation by rat liver microsomes.


PMID 12659833

Abstract

In this study, the metabolic activation of 2-nitrofluorene (NF) to estrogenic compounds was examined. NF was negative in estrogen reporter assays using estrogen-responsive yeast and human breast cancer cell line MCF-7. However, the compound exhibited estrogenic activity after incubation with liver microsomes of 3-methylcholanthrene-treated rats in the presence of NADPH. Minor estrogenic activity was observed when liver microsomes of untreated or phenobarbital-treated rats were used instead of those from 3-methylcholanthrene-treated rats. When the compound was incubated with the liver microsomes of 3-methylcholanthrene-treated rats in the presence of NADPH, 7-hydroxy-2-nitrofluorene (7-OH-NF) was formed as a major metabolite. However, little of the metabolite was formed by liver microsomes of untreated or phenobarbital-treated rats. Rat recombinant cytochrome P450 1A1 exhibited a significant oxidase activity toward NF, affording 7-OH-NF. Liver microsomes of phenobarbital-treated rats also enhanced oxidase activity toward NF. In this case, 9-hydroxy-2-nitrofluorene was formed. 7-OH-NF exhibited a significant estrogenic activity, while the activity of 9-hydroxy-2-nitrofluorene was much lower. These results suggest that the estrogenic activity of NF was due to formation of the 7-hydroxylated metabolite by liver microsomes.