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

Effect of spin traps in isolated rat hepatocytes and liver microsomes.

Spin traps are increasingly employed in the detection of free radicals in biological systems, including liver microsomes and isolated hepatocytes. Two spin traps phenyl-t-butyl nitrone (PBN) and 4-pyridyl-l-oxide-t-butyl nitrone (4-POBN) have been tested for their effects on hepatocyte viability and mixed-function oxidase activity. High concentration of PBN but not of 4-POBN proved to moderately affect liver cell integrity, without interfering with intracellular ATP or cytochrome P-450 content. PBN also decreased hepatocyte GSH content, probably as the result of its metabolism to benzaldehyde. The two spin traps were found to inhibit aminopyrine demethylase and ethoxycoumarin deethylase activity in hepatocytes and microsomes. At low concentrations (1-5 mM) PBN enhanced aniline hydroxylase while high concentrations of the spin trap inhibited this activity. The inhibition of the monooxygenase system was not caused by damage of microsomal enzymes, but rather by competition with other substrates for the binding to the haemoprotein. The effects of spin traps on mixed function oxidase systems should be taken into account when evaluating the results of spin trapping experiments.[1]


  1. Effect of spin traps in isolated rat hepatocytes and liver microsomes. Albano, E., Cheeseman, K.H., Tomasi, A., Carini, R., Dianzani, M.U., Slater, T.F. Biochem. Pharmacol. (1986) [Pubmed]
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