Enhancement of phase II enzyme activity by purpurin resulting in the suppression of MeIQx-DNA-adduct formation in mice

Eizo Takahashi, Sakae Arimoto, Keinosuke Okamoto, Tomoe Negishi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


We previously demonstrated using a bacterial system that the antigenotoxic activity of the anthraquinone compounds purpurin and alizarin was due to the suppression of microsomal enzyme activity involved in the activation of mutagens. In the present study we determined the effect of purpurin and alizarin on (i) MeIQx-DNA-adduct formation in mouse tissues and (ii) the activity of phases I and II enzymes in liver fractions, the liver being the target tissue of MeIQx. The amount of MeIQx-DNA adduct formed was determined using 32P-postlabeling methods. Methoxyresorufin-O-demethylase (MROD) and ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) enzyme activities, which reflect CYP 1A activity, were measured as markers for phase I enzymes, and UDP-glucuronyltransferase (UGT) and glutathione S-transferase (GST) activities were determined as markers for phase II enzymes. Mice fed with a diet containing 0.5% purpurin for 3 days prior to MeIQx administration had 70% fewer MeIQx-DNA adducts in the lung and kidney, and fewer DNA adducts (insignificant, statistically) in the liver compared with mice fed a diet lacking purpurin. MROD and EROD activities in the liver of these mice increased six- and eight-fold, respectively, and were higher than those determined for the control mice within 1 day following commencement of purpurin treatment. These elevated activities were maintained during treatment and declined immediately following removal of purpurin from the diet. GST and UGT activities gradually increased 2.5- and 3-fold, respectively, following purpurin treatment, and were maintained at significantly high levels even after purpurin administration ceased. Alizarin did not significantly affect DNA-adduct formation and enzyme activity, except in the case of UGT. Taken together, our results show that purpurin reduced MeIQx-DNA-adduct formation by maintaining elevated phase II enzyme activities, thereby facilitating accelerated excretion of MeIQx.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-134
Number of pages7
JournalMutation Research - Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 10 2007


  • CYP 1A
  • GST
  • MeIQx-DNA adduct
  • Phase I enzyme
  • Phase II enzyme
  • Purpurin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Enhancement of phase II enzyme activity by purpurin resulting in the suppression of MeIQx-DNA-adduct formation in mice'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this