In vivo effects of new inhibitors of catechol-O-methyl transferase. (1/735)

1. The effects of two new synthetic compounds showing in vitro catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) inhibitor properties were studied in vivo and compared with the effects of nitecapone and Ro-41-0960. 2. QO IA (3-(3-hydroxy-4-methoxy-5-nitrobenzylidene)-2,4-pentanedione), QO IIR ([2-(3,4-dihydroxy-2-nitrophenyl)vinyl]phenyl ketone), nitecapone and Ro-41-0960 (30 mg kg(-1), i.p.) were given to reserpinized rats 1 h before the administration of L-DOPA/carbidopa (LD/CD, 50:50 mg kg(-1), i.p.). Locomotor activity was assessed 1 h later. All the COMT inhibitors (COMTI), with the exception of QO IA, markedly potentiated LD/CD reversal of reserpine-induced akinesia. Similar results were obtained when the COMTI were coadministered with LD/CD. The effect of compound QO IIR was dose-dependent (7.5-30 mg kg(-1), i.p.). 3. The COMTI (30 mg kg(-1), i.p.) potentiated LD/CD reversal of both catalepsy and hypothermia of reserpinized mice. 4. QO IIR, nitecapone and Ro-41-0960 (30 mg kg(-1), i.p.) reduced striatal 3-methyl-DOPA (3-OMD) levels and increased dopamine (DA) and dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) levels. Compound QO IA was devoid of any effect on striatal amine levels. In contrast to the other inhibitors, Ro-41-0961 reduced HVA levels as well. The effect of QO IIR on striatal amine levels was dose-dependent (7.5-60 mg kg(-1), i.p.) 5. These results suggest that the new compound QO IIR is an effective peripherally acting COMT inhibitor in vivo.  (+info)

Dehydrodicaffeic acid dilactone, an inhibitor of catechol-O-methyl transferase. (2/735)

In the screening of catechol-O-methyltransferase inhibitors, three compounds were isolated from the culture filtrate of a mushroom, Inonotus sp. One was 3,4-dihydroxycinnamic acid (caffeic acid) which had been reported as an inhibitor of this enzyme. The others were the dextrorotatory 2,6-bis-(3',4'-dihydroxyphenyl)-3,7-dioxabicyclo-[3,3,0]-octane 4,8-dione (dehydrodicaffeic acid dilactone) andits antipode. These new compounds inhibited both dopamine beta-hydroxylase and dopa decarboxylase and showed hypotensive activity in the SH rat.  (+info)

Characterization and implications of estrogenic down-regulation of human catechol-O-methyltransferase gene transcription. (3/735)

Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT, EC 2.1.1.6) is a ubiquitous enzyme that is crucial to the metabolism of carcinogenic catechols and catecholamines. Regulation of human COMT gene expression may be important in the pathophysiology of various human disorders including estrogen-induced cancers, Parkinson's disease, depression, and hypertension. The gender difference in human COMT activity and variations in rat COMT activity during the estrous cycle led us to explore whether estrogen can regulate human COMT gene transcription. Our Northern analyses showed that physiological concentrations of 17-beta-estradiol (10(-9)-10(-7) M) could decrease human 1. 3-kilobase COMT mRNA levels in MCF-7 cells in a time- and dose-dependent manner through an estrogen receptor-dependent mechanism. Two DNA fragments immediately 5' to the published human COMT gene proximal and distal promoters were cloned. Sequence analyses revealed several half-palindromic estrogen response elements and CCAAT/enhancer binding protein sites. By cotransfecting COMT promoter-chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter genes with human estrogen receptor cDNA and pSV-beta-galactosidase plasmids into COS-7 cells, we showed that 17-beta-estradiol could down-regulate chloramphenicol acetyltransferase activities, and COMT promoter activities dose-dependently. Functional deletion analyses of COMT promoters also showed that this estrogenic effect was mediated by a 280 base pair fragment with two putative half-palindromic estrogen response elements in the proximal promoter and a 323-base pair fragment with two putative CCAAT/enhancer binding protein sites in the distal promoter. Our findings provide the first evidence and molecular mechanism for estrogen to inhibit COMT gene transcription, which may shed new insight into the role of estrogen in the pathophysiology of different human disorders.  (+info)

Interactions of (-)-ilimaquinone with methylation enzymes: implications for vesicular-mediated secretion. (4/735)

BACKGROUND: The marine sponge metabolite (-)-ilimaquinone has antimicrobial, anti-HIV, anti-inflammatory and antimitotic activities, inhibits the cytotoxicity of ricin and diptheria toxin, and selectively fragments the Golgi apparatus. The range of activities demonstrated by this natural product provides a unique opportunity for studying these cellular processes. RESULTS: Affinity chromatography experiments show that (-)-ilimaquinone interacts with enzymes of the activated methyl cycle: S-adenosylmethionine synthetase, S-adenosylhomocysteinase and methyl transferases. Known inhibitors of these enzymes were found to block vesicle-mediated secretion in a manner similar to (-)-ilimaquinone. Moreover, the antisecretory effects of (-)-ilimaquinone and inhibitors of methylation chemistry, but not brefeldin A, could be reversed in the presence of the cellular methylating agent S-adenosylmethionine. Of the enzymes examined in the activated methyl cycle, S-adenosylhomocysteinase was specifically inhibited by (-)-ilimaquinone. Consistent with these observations, (-)-ilimaquinone was shown to obstruct new methylation events in adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH)-secreting pituitary cells. CONCLUSIONS: (-)-ilimaquinone inhibits cellular methylations through its interactions with S-adenosylhomocysteinase. Furthermore, these studies indicate that the inhibition of secretion by ilimaquinone is the result of the natural product's antimethylation activity. It is likely that the ability to fragment the Golgi apparatus, as well as other activities, are also related to ilimaquinone's influence on methylation chemistry.  (+info)

COMT inhibition with tolcapone does not affect carbidopa pharmacokinetics in parkinsonian patients in levodopa/carbidopa (Sinemet). (5/735)

AIMS: Tolcapone is a novel catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitor used as an adjunct to levodopa/carbidopa or levodopa/benserazide therapy to improve treatment of Parkinson's disease. The aim of the current study was to investigate the potential effect of tolcapone on the pharmacokinetics of carbidopa. METHODS: This was an open-label study in 12 parkinsonian patients receiving optimal levodopa/carbidopa therapy and tolcapone 200 mg three times daily for 6 weeks. Blood samples were taken at baseline (i.e. before the first tolcapone intake) and after 1-2 weeks and 6 weeks so that carbidopa pharmacokinetics before and during tolcapone treatment could be assessed. RESULTS: No changes in any pharmacokinetic parameters of carbidopa were observed. The mean AUC(0,tau) and Cmax values at baseline were 0.39 microg ml-1 h and 0. 14 microg ml-1, respectively. During tolcapone treatment these values were on average 0.35 microg ml-1 h (AUC(0,tau), week 1-2), 0. 34 microg ml-1 h (AUC(0,tau), week 6 and 0.13 microg ml-1 (Cmax, weeks 1-2 and 6). tmax remained unchanged (approx. 2 h). CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that tolcapone does not affect carbidopa elimination and that no interaction of any clinical relevance occurs between tolcapone and carbidopa.  (+info)

Catechol-O-methyltransferase activity in CHO cells expressing norepinephrine transporter. (6/735)

1. We examined the existence of catecholamine metabolizing enzymes (catechol-O-methyltransferase, COMT, and monoamine oxidase, MAO) in CHO cells transfected with norepinephrine (NE) transporter (NET) cDNA. 2. NET activity was studied by incubating cells with [3H]-NE (0. 5 microCi ml-1, 20 min) in a Na+ containing medium. Incubation with [3H]-NE lead to [3H] accumulation at 47797+/-4864 d.p.m. per well. Specific inhibitors of NET abolished this uptake. 3. During post-uptake incubation, [3H] leaked rapidly from cells and the extracellular phase comprised 89% of total radioactivity within 40 min. Both [3H] retention and [3H] 'leakage' were largely unaffected by inhibitors for MAO. In contrast, COMT inhibitors, U-0521 and Ro 41-0960, dose-dependently increased intracellular [3H]-NE retention with a maximal increase of 4.5 fold. The EC50 for Ro 41-0960 was 139-times lower than that of U-0521. U-0521 largely inhibited [3H] 'leakage' and doubled the apparent Vmax for [3H]-NE uptake. 4. Addition of U-0521 during uptake incubation increased intracellular NE content by 8 fold. Normetanephrine, the COMT-dependent metabolite of NE, was formed in large quantities during post-uptake incubation. U-0521 significantly inhibited the formation of NMN with an equal preservation of intracellular NE. 5. CHO cells expressing NET possess COMT activity, which is responsible for the metabolism of NE to form lipophilic metabolite normetanephrine. The apparent 'properties' of the NET function expressed in CHO cells changed, after inhibition of COMT, in such a way closer to that described in the native neuronal preparations.  (+info)

Breast cancer risk associated with genotype polymorphism of the estrogen-metabolizing genes CYP17, CYP1A1, and COMT: a multigenic study on cancer susceptibility. (7/735)

Estrogen has been proposed to trigger breast cancer development via an initiating mechanism involving its metabolite, catechol estrogen (CE). To examine this hypothesis, we conducted a multigenic case-control study to determine whether polymorphisms of the genes responsible for CE formation via estrogen biosynthesis (CYP17) and hydroxylation (CYP1A1) and CE inactivation (COMT) are associated with an elevated risk for breast cancer in Taiwanese women, and whether the association between genotype and risk may be modified by estrogen exposure. One hundred and fifty breast cancer patients and 150 healthy controls were recruited. PCR-based RFLP assays were used to determine the genotypes of estrogen-metabolizing genes. The breast cancer risk associated with individual susceptibility genotypes varied among the three genes and was highest for COMT, followed by CYP1A1 and CYP17. After simultaneous consideration of all three genes and other well-established risk factors of breast cancer, the COMT genotype remained the most significant determinant for breast cancer development and was associated with a 4-fold increase in risk (95% confidence interval, 1.12-19.08). Furthermore, a trend of increasing risk for developing breast cancer was found in women harboring higher numbers of high-risk genotypes (P = 0.006), including the high activity CYP17 (CYP17 A2/A2), high inducibility CYP1A1 (CYP1A1 MspI vt/vt), and low activity COMT (COMT L/L) genotypes. The association of risk with the number of susceptibility genotypes was stronger in women with prolonged estrogen exposure (indicated by a higher number of estrogen exposure years or a higher number of estrogen exposure years between menarche and first full-term pregnancy), women with higher estrogen levels (implied by early menarche), and women with a higher body mass index (> or = 22.5). On the basis of comprehensive profiles of estrogen metabolism, this study supports the possibility that breast cancer can be initiated by estrogen exposure.  (+info)

Increased mitochondrial superoxide production in rat liver mitochondria, rat hepatocytes, and HepG2 cells following ethinyl estradiol treatment. (8/735)

Ethinyl estradiol (EE) is a strong promoter of hepatocarcinogenesis. Treatment of rats with EE and other hepatic promoters induces a mitosuppressed state characterized by decreased hepatocyte turnover and reduced growth responsiveness. Previously, we identified several nuclear and mitochondrial genome-encoded mitochondrial genes whose transcripts were increased during EE-induced hepatic mitosuppression in rats and in EE-treated HepG2 cells (Chen et al. Carcinogenesis, 17, 2783-2786, 1996 and Carcinogenesis, 19, 101-107, 1998). In both cultured rat hepatocytes and HepG2 cells, EE increased respiratory chain activity (reflected by increased mitochondrial superoxide production detected as increased lucigenin-derived chemiluminescence (LDCL). In this paper, we provide additional characterizations of these effects. Increased LDCL was detected in mitochondria isolated from EE-treated rats, documenting that these estrogen effects on mitochondrial function are not confined to cells in culture. EE and estradiol (E2) increased LDCL in cultured rat hepatocytes and HepG2 cells in a dose- (beginning at 0.25 microM levels) and time-dependent response. Inhibition of P450-mediated estrogen metabolism inhibited, while direct exposure to E2 catechol metabolites enhanced LDCL. Co-treatment with glutathione ester or with the specific antiestrogen, ICI 182708 inhibited LDCL. In contrast, estrogen-induced LDCL was enhanced by glutathione depletion, and by inhibition of catechol-o-methyltransferase. These results support a working hypothesis that in liver cells, increased respiratory chain activity induced by estrogen treatment requires both metabolism to catechols and an estrogen receptor-mediated signal transduction pathway.  (+info)