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

Selective dehydrogenation/oxygenation of 3-methylindole by cytochrome p450 enzymes.

3-Methylindole (3 MI) is a selective pulmonary toxicant, and cytochrome P450 (P450) bioactivation of 3 MI, through hydroxylation, epoxidation, or dehydrogenation pathways, is a prerequisite for toxicity. CYP2F1 and CYP2F3 exclusively catalyze the dehydrogenation of 3 MI to 3-methyleneindolenine, without detectable formation of the hydroxylation or epoxidation products. It was not known whether 3 MI is simply an excellent dehydrogenation substrate for all P450 enzymes, or whether certain cytochrome P450s responsible for 3 MI bioactivation have unique active sites that only catalyze the dehydrogenation of the molecule, while other P450s would catalyze only the oxygenation of 3 MI. Therefore, the kinetics of product formation by the CYP2F1 and CYP2F3 enzymes were compared with other cytochrome P450 enzymes. The enzymes tested were CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP1B1, and CYP2E1. The CYP1A1 and CYP1A2 enzymes produced all three 3 MI metabolites: the dehydrogenation product, 3-methyleneindolenine (V(max)/K(m) = 4 and 22, respectively); the hydroxylation product, indole-3-carbinol (V(max)/K(m) = 42 and 100, respectively); and the epoxidation product, 3-methyloxindole (V(max)/K(m) = 4 and 72, respectively). These CYP1A enzymes catalyzed oxygenation of 3 MI at much faster rates than dehydrogenation. CYP1B1 produced indole-3-carbinol (V(max)/K(m) = 85) and 3-methyloxindole (V(max)/K(m) = 7), and CYP2E1 only produced 3-methyloxindole (V(max)/K(m) = 98), but neither enzyme catalyzed the formation of the dehydrogenated product. Six additional P450 enzymes that were tested formed none of the dehydrogenation product. The ability of the various CYP1 family enzymes to catalyze the formation of all three major 3 MI metabolites, along with the specific oxygenation by CYP2E1, illustrates that dehydrogenation of 3 MI is not a substrate-directed process, but that the members of the CYP2F family possess unique active sites that specifically catalyze only the dehydrogenation mechanism.[1]


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