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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Products of metabolic activation of the antitumor drug ledakrin (nitracrine) in vitro.

The aim of this work was to characterize the products of metabolic activation of the antitumor drug ledakrin (Nitracrine) in model metabolic systems, where formation of drug-DNA adducts was previously discovered. The metabolic products obtained in different biological systems were compared with those obtained in experiments where chemical reducing agents were applied. Therefore, activation products were obtained in the presence of the microsomal fraction of rat liver and in the experiments with the reducing agents dithiothreitol, hydrazine hydrate, and SnCl(2). Furthermore, transformations of the drug with oxidoreductase enzymes DT-diaphorase and xanthine oxidase were observed. The ledakrin transformation products were separated and analyzed by HPLC with diode array detection. Structural studies of the products were performed by means of ESI-MS and NMR. Proton, carbon, and nitrogen assignments were made based upon DQF-COSY, ROESY, TOCSY, HSQC, and HMBC experiments. It was demonstrated during the reduction of ledakrin that a key metabolite, a compound with an additional five-membered ring attached to positions 1 and 9 of the acridine core and with the retained 9-aminoalkyl side chain, was formed in all the systems that were studied. It was determined that the reactive nitrogen atoms of this additional ring underwent further transformations resulting in the formation of a six-membered ring produced by the addition of a carbon atom to the dihydropyrazoloacridine ring. Furthermore, it was observed that positions 2 and 4 of ledakrin's acridine ring are susceptible to nucleophilic substitution as revealed by the studies with dithiothreitol. Additionally, although most products from the reduction of ledakrin were extremely unstable, 1-aminoacridinone, produced enzymatically and with dithiothreitol, exhibited persistent stability under the studied conditions.[1]


  1. Products of metabolic activation of the antitumor drug ledakrin (nitracrine) in vitro. Gorlewska, K., Mazerska, Z., Sowiński, P., Konopa, J. Chem. Res. Toxicol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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