Xenobiotica; the fate of foreign compounds in biological systems

Studies on the fate of flocoumafen in the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica).

PMID 2756717


1. 14C-Flocoumafen, administered to Japanese quail as a single oral or i.p. dose, was rapidly and extensively eliminated in excreta; most was eliminated within 24 h. Extensive metabolism of the rodenticide was seen, with at least 8 metabolites detected; unchanged flocoumafen comprised 9% dose. The elimination kinetics and metabolic profiles were qualitatively similar after oral and i.p. dosing. 2. The major metabolites (60% dose) were labile to beta-glucuronidase, liberating aglycones with identical chromatographic mobilities to those of the unchanged flocoumafen isomers. 3. Radioactivity was retained mostly in the liver; largely as unchanged flocoumafen associated with the mitochondrial and microsomal fractions. Elimination of radioactivity from most tissues was biphasic with an initially rapid depletion (5 days) followed by a slow terminal elimination phase. The elimination half life from liver was greater than 100 days. 4. Livers of quail receiving extended dietary exposure to flocoumafen at 5, 15 and 50 ppm had concentrations of flocoumafen (1.0 nmol/g) that were independent of dose, indicating a capacity-limited binding site. These hepatic concentrations were similar to those after a single oral dose and were also similar to those in rats. The data indicate the presence in quail liver of a saturable high affinity flocoumafin binding site with similar characteristics and capacity to that in the rat. 5. The selective toxicity of flocoumafen to rats (highly toxic) and quail (moderately toxic) appears to arise from differences in metabolism rather than from anticoagulant binding in the liver. When hepatic binding sites of rats are saturated anticoagulant action becomes lethal, whereas quail are able to survive and extensively metabolize the compound.

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Flocoumafen, PESTANAL®, analytical standard