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Joseph P , Jaiswal AK , Stobbe CC , Chapman JD
The Role of Specific Reductases in the Intracellular Activation and Binding of 2-Nitroimidazoles
International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics. 1994 May 15;29(2) :351-355
PMID: ISI:A1994NN51200023   
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Purpose: To determine the relative effectiveness of specific cellular reductases for the activation and binding of 2- nitroimadazoles in vivo. Methods and Materials: Monkey kidney cells were transfected with recombinant plasmids to effect intracellular overexpression of P450 reductase and DT- diaphorase. The covalent binding of 2-nitroimidazoles to cellular macromolecules was measured as a function of time of cell incubation at various oxygen concentrations. The effect of allipurinol on cellular binding of radiolabeled 2- nitroimidazoles was also measured. Results: A 1,000-fold overexpression of DT-diaphorase resulted in a small but significant increase in 2-nitroimidazole binding rate. An 80- fold overexpression of cytochrome P450 reductase resulted in a 5-7-fold increase in the binding rate of 2-nitroimidazole. The inhibition of xanthine oxidase by allipurinol had no effect on 2-nitroimidazole binding rates. The amplification of P450 reductase activity within cells was always much larger than the resultant increase in 2-nitroimidazole binding rate, suggesting an enzyme kinetic process less than first order and possibly of 1/2-order. Conclusion: These data suggest that cytochrome P450 reductase is the most important enzyme in these cells for reducing 2-nitroimidazoles to intermediates which can covalently bind to cellular macromolecules. Furthermore, since this cellular process demonstrates similar to 1/2-order kinetics, a tissue's capacity for binding 2-nitroimidazole drug in hypoxia should be proportional to the square root of its intracellular P450 reductase level.