Variability in the expression of enzymes metabolizing carcinogens derived from cigarette smoke may contribute to individual susceptibility to pulmonary carcinogenesis. This study was designed to determine the effects of smoking and 3 major cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes, i.e., CYP1A1, CYP1B1 and CYP3A, which metabolize polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) on PAH-DNA adduct formation in the bronchoalveolar macrophages (BAM) of 31 smokers and 16 non-smokers. CYP protein levels were determined by immunoblotting and PAH-DNA adduct levels by the nuclease P1 enhanced (32)P-postlabeling method. The expression of specific CYP forms was confirmed by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) from 10 additional samples. CYP3A protein, CYP3A5 by RT-PCR, was detected in the majority of samples from smokers and non-smokers. The levels of CYP3A appeared to be lower in active smokers than in ex-smokers (p = 0.10) or never smokers (p = 0.02). CYP1A1 was not detectable by either immunoblotting or RT-PCR. The expression of CYP1B1 was low or undetectable in most samples. The PAH-DNA adduct levels were higher (mean 1.57/10(8) nucleotides) in samples from smokers compared with non-smokers (mean 0.42/10(8) nucleotides, p < 0.001) and the number of adducts correlated with the number of cigarettes smoked daily (regression analysis, p < 0. 001). Higher levels of adducts were detected in samples from smokers with a high level of CYP3A compared with those with a low level (regression analysis, p = 0.002). As CYP3A5 is abundant in both lung epithelial cells and BAM, its association with adduct formation suggests that this CYP form may be important in the activation of cigarette smoke procarcinogens.
Copyright 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.