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

Photochemical transformation and phototoxicity of 1-aminopyrene.

1-Aminopyrene (1-AP) is an environmental mutagen and a metabolite of 1-nitropyrene (1-NO2P). On light irradiation, 1-AP transforms into oxidation products with a half-life of 7.1 min in 10% methanolic buffer. The presence of DNA or free-radical/ singlet oxygen scavengers 1,4-dithiothreitol, histidine, or NaN3 slows down 1-AP photochemical reaction. The photoproducts identified include 1-hydroxyaminopyrene, 1-nitrosopyrene, 1-NO2P, 1-amino-x-hydroxypyrene, and three covalent dimers. Since it is known that 1-NO2P and 1-nitrosopyrene are genotoxic and 1-hydroxyaminopyrnene can react with DNA to form covalent adducts, we used the Mutatox test to assess the toxicity of 1-AP and its photoproducts. It was found that the lowest-observed-effect concentrations for 1-AP, 1-AP photoproducts, and 1-NO2P are 1.25 microM, 10 microM, and NA (no mutagenic response was seen at this concentration range) in direct medium (no S-9) and NA, 5 microM, and 0.625 microM in S-9 medium, respectively. Therefore, 1-AP photoproducts are more genotoxic than 1-AP itself in the S-9 medium and more mutagenic than 1-NO2P in the direct medium. Thus, 1-NO2P alone cannot account for all the mutagenicity of the photoproducts. Irradiation of 1-AP together with DNA leads to covalent DNA adduct formation possibly via the 1-hydroxyaminopyrene intermediate. In this study, ultraviolet-A (UVA) was used at approximately the same magnitude as the outdoor UVA irradiance. Considering the half-life of 1-AP in the test solutions in this study, the aquatic biota (including humans) near the surface layer of a static water body are most likely subjected to the photoinduced toxicity of the study compound. The biota at the lower depths will also be affected if turbulence becomes a significant factor in enhancing the exposure risk for aquatic organisms.[1]


  1. Photochemical transformation and phototoxicity of 1-aminopyrene. Zeng, K., Hwang, H.M., Dong, S., Shi, X., Wilson, K., Green, J., Jiao, Y., Yu, H. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. (2004) [Pubmed]
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