Life Extension Magazine September 2005
The detoxification enzyme systems.
The human body is exposed to a wide array of xenobiotics in one’s lifetime, from food components to environmental toxins to pharmaceuticals, and has developed complex enzymatic mechanisms to detoxify these substances. These mechanisms exhibit significant individual variability, and are affected by environment, life-style, and genetic influences. The scientific literature suggests an association between impaired detoxification and certain diseases, including cancer, Parkinson’s disease, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue/immune dysfunction syndrome. Data regarding these hepatic detoxification enzyme systems and the body s mechanisms of regulating them suggests the ability to efficiently detoxify and remove xenobiotics can affect these and other chronic disease processes. This article reviews the myriad detoxification enzyme systems, their regulatory mechanisms, and the dietary, lifestyle, and genetic factors influencing their activities, as well as laboratory tests available to assess their functioning.
Altern Med Rev. 1998 Jun;3(3):187-98
Use of transgenic and mutant animal models in the study of heterocyclic amine-induced mutagenesis and carcinogenesis.
Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) are potent mutagens generated during the cooking of meat and fish, and several of these compounds produce tumors in conventional experimental animals. During the past 5 years or so, HCAs have been tested in a number of novel in vivo murine models, including the following: lacZ, lacI, cII, c-myc/lacZ, rpsL, and gptDelta. transgenics, XPA-/-, XPC-/-, Msh2+/-, Msh2-/- and p53+/- knock-outs, Apc mutant mice (ApcDelta716, Apc1638N, Apcmin), and A33DeltaNbeta-cat knock-in mice. Several of these models have provided insights into the mutation spectra induced in vivo by HCAs in target and non-target organs for tumorigenesis, as well as demonstrating enhanced susceptibility to HCA-induced tumors and preneoplastic lesions. This review describes several of the more recent reports in which novel animal models were used to examine HCA-induced mutagenesis and carcinogenesis in vivo, including a number of studies which assessed the inhibitory activities of chemopreventive agents such as 1,2-dithiole-3-thione, conjugated linoleic acids, tea, curcumin, chlorophyllin-chitosan, and sulindac.
J Biochem Mol Biol. 2003 Jan 31;36(1):35-42
Dietary supplementation of curcumin enhances antioxidant and phase II metabolizing enzymes in ddY male mice: possible role in protection against chemical carcinogenesis and toxicity.
Dietary antioxidants protect laboratory animals against the induction of tumours by a variety of chemical carcinogens. Among possible mechanism of protection against chemical carcinogenesis could be mediated via-antioxidant-dependent induction of detoxifying enzymes. Curcumin, a yellow pigment from Curcuma longa, is a major component of turmeric and is commonly used as a spice and food colouring material and exhibits antiinflammatory antitumour, and antioxidant properties. In this study we therefore investigated the effect of dietary supplementation of curcumin on the activities of antioxidant and phase II-metabolizing enzymes involved in detoxification, and production of reactive oxygen species were quantified in ddY male mice. Dietary supplementation of curcumin (2%, w/v) to male ddY mice for 30 days significantly increased the activities of glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase and catalase to 189%, 179%, 189%, and 181% in liver and 143%, 134%, 167% and 115% in kidney respectively as compared with corresponding normal diet fed control (P<0.05-0.001). Parallel to these changes, curcumin feeding to mice also resulted in a considerable enhancement in the activity of phase II-metabolizing enzymes viz. glutathione S-transferase and quinone reductase to 1.7 and 1.8 times in liver and 1.1 and 1.3 times in kidney respectively as compared with corresponding normal diet fed control (P<0.05-0.01). In general, the increase in activities of antioxidant and phase II-metabolizing enzymes was more pronounced in liver as compared to kidney. The induction of such detoxifying enzymes by curcumin suggest the potential value of this compound as protective agent against chemical carcinogenesis and other forms of electrophilic toxicity. The significance of these results can be implicated in relation to cancer chemopreventive effects of curcumin against the induction of tumours in various target organs.
Pharmacol Toxicol. 2003 Jan;92(1):33-8
Inhibition of carcinogen induced c-Ha-ras and c-fos proto-oncogenes expression by dietary curcumin.
BACKGROUND: We investigated the chemopreventive action of dietary curcumin on 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene (DMBA)-initiated and 12,0-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA)-promoted skin tumor formation in Swiss albino mice. Curcumin, a yellow coloring matter isolated from roots of Curcuma longa Linn, is a phenolic compound possessing antioxidant, free radical scavenger, and antiinflammatory properties. It has been shown by previously reported work that TPA-induced skin tumors were inhibited by topical application of curcumin, and curcumin has been shown to inhibit a variety of biological activities of TPA. Topical application of curcumin was reported to inhibit TPA-induced c-fos, c-jun and c-myc gene expression in mouse skin. This paper reports the effects of orally administered curcumin, which was consumed as a dietary component at concentrations of 0.2 % or 1 %, in ad libitum feeding. RESULTS: Animals in which tumors had been initiated with DMBA and promoted with TPA experienced significantly fewer tumors and less tumor volume if they ingested either 0.2% or 1% curcumin diets. Also, the dietary consumption of curcumin resulted in a significantly decreased expression of ras and fos proto-oncogenes in the tumorous skin, as measured by enhanced chemiluminesence Western blotting detection system (Amersham). CONCLUSIONS: Whereas earlier work demonstrated that topical application of curcumin to mouse skin inhibited TPA-induced expression of c-fos, c-jun and c-myc oncogenes, our results are the first to show that orally consumed curcumin significantly inhibited DMBA- and TPA-induced ras and fos gene expression in mouse skin.
BMC Cancer. 2001;1(1):1. Epub 2001 Jan 17
Antiproliferative effect of curcumin (diferuloylmethane) against human breast tumor cell lines.
Pharmacologically safe compounds that can inhibit the proliferation of tumor cells have potential as anticancer agents. Curcumin, a diferuloylmethane, is a major active component of the food flavor turmeric (Curcuma longa) that exhibits anticarcinogenic properties in vivo. In vitro, it suppressed c-jun/Ap-1 and NF-kappaB activation and type 1 human immunodeficiency virus long-terminal repeat-directed gene expression. We examined the antiproliferative effects of curcumin against several breast tumor cell lines, including hormone-dependent and -independent and multidrug-resistant (MDR) lines. Cell growth inhibition was monitored by [3H]thymidine incorporation, Trypan blue exclusion, crystal violet dye uptake and flow cytometry. All the cell lines tested, including the MDR-positive ones, were highly sensitive to curcumin. The growth inhibitory effect of curcumin was time- and dose-dependent, and correlated with its inhibition of ornithine decarboxylase activity. Curcumin preferentially arrested cells in the G2/S phase of the cell cycle. Curcumin-induced cell death was neither due to apoptosis nor to any significant change in the expression of apoptosis-related genes, including Bcl-2, p53, cyclin B and transglutaminase. Overall our results suggest that curcumin is a potent antiproliferative agent for breast tumor cells and may have potential as an anticancer agent.
Anticancer Drugs. 1997 Jun;8(5):470-81
Potent induction of phase 2 enzymes in human prostate cells by sulforaphane.
Two population-based, case-control studies have documented reduced risk of prostate cancer in men who consume cruciferous vegetables. Cruciferae contain high levels of the isothiocyanate sulforaphane. Sulforaphane is known to bolster the defenses of cells against carcinogens through up-regulation of enzymes of carcinogen defense (phase 2 enzymes). Prostate cancer is characterized by an early and near universal loss of expression of the phase 2 enzyme glutathione S-transferase (GST)-pi. We tested whether sulforaphane may act in prostatic cells by increasing phase 2 enzyme expression. The human prostate cancer cell lines LNCaP, MDA PCa 2a, MDA PCa 2b, PC-3, and TSU-Pr1 were treated with 0.1-15 microM sulforaphane in vitro. LNCaP was also treated with an aqueous extract of broccoli sprouts. Quinone reductase enzymatic activity, a surrogate of global phase 2 enzyme activity, was assayed by the menadione-coupled reduction of tetrazolium dye. Expression of NQO-1, GST-alpha, gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase-heavy and -light chains, and microsomal GST was assessed by Northern blot analysis. Sulforaphane and broccoli sprout extract potently induce quinone reductase activity in cultured prostate cells, and this induction appears to be mediated by increased transcription of the NQO-1 gene. Sulforaphane also induces expression of gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase light subunit but not the heavy subunit, and this induction is associated with moderate increases in intracellular glutathione levels. Microsomal and alpha-class glutathione transferases were also induced transcriptionally. Sulforaphane induces phase 2 enzyme expression and activity significantly in human prostatic cells. This induction is accompanied by, but not because of, increased intracellular glutathione synthesis. Our findings may help explain the observed inverse correlation between consumption of cruciferae and prostate cancer risk.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2001 Sep;10(9):949-54
Chemoprotective glucosinolates and isothiocyanates of broccoli sprouts: metabolism and excretion in humans.
Broccoli sprouts are a rich source of glucosinolates and isothiocyanates that induce phase 2 detoxication enzymes, boost antioxidant status, and protect animals against chemically induced cancer. Glucosinolates are hydrolyzed by myrosinase (an enzyme found in plants and bowel microflora) to form isothiocyanates. In vivo, isothiocyanates are conjugated with glutathione and then sequentially metabolized to mercapturic acids. These metabolites are collectively designated dithiocarbamates. We studied the disposition of broccoli sprout glucosinolates and isothiocyanates in healthy volunteers. Broccoli sprouts were grown, processed, and analyzed for (a) inducer potency; (b) glucosinolate and isothiocyanate concentrations; (c) glucosinolate profiles; and (d) myrosinase activity. Dosing preparations included uncooked fresh sprouts (with active myrosinase) as well as homogenates of boiled sprouts that were devoid of myrosinase activity and contained either glucosinolates only or isothiocyanates only. In a crossover study, urinary dithiocarbamate excretion increased sharply after administration of broccoli sprout glucosinolates or isothiocyanates. Cumulative excretion of dithiocarbamates following 111-micromol doses of isothiocyanates was greater than that after glucosinolates (88.9 +/- 5.5 and 13.1 +/- 1.9 micromol, respectively; P < 0.0003). In subjects fed four repeated 50-micromol doses of isothiocyanates, the intra- and intersubject variation in dithiocarbamate excretion was very small (coefficient of variation, 9%), and after escalating doses, excretion was linear over a 25- to 200-micromol dose range. Dithiocarbamate excretion was higher when intact sprouts were chewed thoroughly rather than swallowed whole (42.4 +/- 7.5 and 28.8 +/- 2.6 micromol; P = 0.049). These studies indicate that isothiocyanates are about six times more bioavailable than glucosinolates, which must first be hydrolyzed. Thorough chewing of fresh sprouts exposes the glucosinolates to plant myrosinase and significantly increases dithiocarbamate excretion. These findings will assist in the design of dosing regimens for clinical studies of broccoli sprout efficacy.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2001 May;10(5):501-8
Selective sensitivity to wasabi-derived 6-(methylsulfinyl)hexyl isothiocyanate of human breast cancer and melanoma cell lines studied in vitro.
Recently, attention has focused on the anticancer properties of an aromatic component 6-(methylsulfinyl)hexyl isothiocyanate (6-MITC) in a typical Japanese spice, wasabi. In this paper, anticancer activity of 6-MITC in vitro was studied by using a human cancer cell (HCC) panel. 6-MITC directly affected the cells in the HCC panel and inhibited their growth in culture. The mean concentration required to inhibit 50% of control cell growth was 3.9 microM, which is a sufficiently low dosage for practical use. The suppression influenced not only the cell growth, but also the survival of these cells. The mean concentration to suppress cells to a 50% survival was 43.7 microM. The reduction activity of 6-MITC was differential, and it suppressed specific cells. These severely suppressed cell lines included breast cancer and melanoma cell lines. For example, one melanoma line was seriously damaged at a concentration of 0.3 microM of 6-MITC. Compared with other MITCs (2-MITC, 4-MITC and 8-MITC), 6-MITC showed the most effective suppression and with the most specific manner of the cells mentioned above. A “COMPARE” analysis using a computerized algorithm, which was based on the HCC database, suggested that the suppression mechanism of 6-MITC is unique and may be different from that of other known chemicals. The actual mechanism may not a simple one but may involve multiple pathways. On account of its sufficiently small size, 6-MITC is a new possible candidate for controlling cancer cells.
Cancer Detect Prev. 2005;29(2):155-60