To investigate whether cytochrome P-450 catalyzes the covalent binding of substrates to DNA by one-electron oxidation, the ability of both uninduced and 3-methylcholanthrene (MC) induced rat liver microsomes and nuclei to catalyze covalent binding of benzo[a]pyrene (BP) to DNA and formation of the labile adduct 7-(benzo[a]pyren-6-yl)guanine (BP-N7Gua) was investigated. This adduct arises from the reaction of the BP radical cation at C-6 with the nucleophilic N-7 of the guanine moiety. In the various systems studied, 1–9 times more BP-N7Gua adduct was isolated than the total amount of stable BP adducts in the DNA. The specific cytochrome P-450 inhibitor 2-[(4,6-dichloro-o-biphenyl)oxy]ethylamine hydrobromide (DPEA) reduced or eliminated BP metabolism, binding of BP to DNA, and formation of BP-N7Gua by cytochrome P-450 in both microsomes and nuclei. The effects of the antioxidants cysteine, glutathione, and p-methoxythiophenol were also investigated. Although cysteine had no effect on the microsome-catalyzed processes, glutathione and p-methoxythiophenol inhibited BP metabolism, binding of BP to DNA, and formation of BP-N7Gua by cytochrome P-450 in both microsomes and nuclei. The decreased levels of binding of BP to DNA in the presence of glutathione or p-methoxythiophenol are matched by decreased amounts of BP-N7Gua adduct and of stable BP-DNA adducts detected by the 32P-postlabeling technique. This study represents the first demonstration of cytochrome P-450 mediating covalent binding of substrates to DNA via one-electron oxidation and suggests that this enzyme can catalyze peroxidase-type electron-transfer reactions.
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