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

Characterization of estrogen and antiestrogen binding to the cytosol and microsomes of breast tumors.

The binding of [3H]estradiol and [3H]hydroxytamoxifen to the cytosol and microsomal fractions of several human breast tumors was investigated. By washing microsomal membranes with a KCl-free or a KCl-containing medium we could distinguish between intrinsic, extrinsic and contaminant estradiol binding sites in these membranes. We observed that treatment of the microsomes with low salt medium removes about 80% of the total estradiol binding sites, whereas 20% are not extractable. The concentration of unextractable [3H]estradiol binding sites in the microsomes varies in proportion to the level of cytosolic estrogen receptors ( ER). About 10% of the total extranuclear specific estrogen binding sites was consistently found tightly associated to the microsomal fraction, which displays an affinity for estradiol (Kd = 0.1-0.6 nM) similar to that of the cytosolic ER. The displacement of [3H]estradiol with unlabeled hormone or with the antiestrogens, nafoxidine, enclomiphene and tamoxifen (TAM) exhibits identical IC50 values either in the cytosol or in the microsomal membranes. On the other hand, the microsomal fraction of breast tumors also binds [3H]hydroxyTAM, but with higher capacity and lower affinity than those of the cytosolic fraction. Furthermore, we did not observe correlation between the concentrations of ER and of antiestrogen binding sites (AEBS) in the tumors. These results indicate that microsomal membranes of human breast tumors contain estrogen binding sites which may be related to the cytosol ER recycling and that specific AEBS are predominantly localized in this membrane system. Furthermore, it is shown that the magnitude of estradiol binding to microsomes depends on the ER positive degree of the tumors, whereas the magnitude of the antiestrogen binding to the microsomes is independent of the ER status of the tumors.[1]


  1. Characterization of estrogen and antiestrogen binding to the cytosol and microsomes of breast tumors. Lopes, M.C., Tavares, M.C., Vale, M.G., Carvalho, A.P. J. Steroid Biochem. Mol. Biol. (1991) [Pubmed]
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