Studies on the reactivity of acyl glucuronides--II. Interaction of diflunisal acyl glucuronide and its isomers with human serum albumin in vitro

Biochem Pharmacol. 1991 Nov 27;42(12):2301-6. doi: 10.1016/0006-2952(91)90233-u.


A major metabolite of diflunisal (DF) is its reactive acyl glucuronide conjugate (DAG) which can undergo hydrolysis (regeneration of DF), intramolecular rearrangement (isomerization via acyl migration) and intermolecular reactions with nucleophiles. We have compared the fate of DAG and its individual 2-, 3- and 4-O-acyl positional isomers (at ca. 55 micrograms DF equivalents/mL) after incubation with human serum albumin (HSA, 40 mg/mL) at pH 7.4 and 37 degrees. Initial half-lives (T1/2) for DAG and its 2-, 3- and 4-isomers were 53, 75, 61 and 26 min, respectively. DAG was more labile to hydrolysis than any of its isomers but the latter, in particular the 4-isomer, were much better substrates for formation of covalent DF-HSA adducts. After a 2-hr incubation, 2.4, 8.2, 13.7 and 36.6% of substrate DAG and its 2-, 3- and 4-isomers (respectively) were present as DF-HSA adducts. With long term incubation, the concentrations of adducts so generated in situ declined in a biphasic manner, with apparent terminal T1/2 values of ca. 28 days. DAG was much more labile to transacylation with methanol (i.e. formation of DF methyl ester) than an equimolar mixture of its isomers after incubation in a 1:1 methanol:pH 7.4 buffer solution at 37 degrees (T1/2 values of 5 and 70 min, respectively). The data do not support direct transacylation with nucleophilic groups on protein as the predominant mechanism of formation of covalent DF-HSA adducts in vitro.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Diflunisal / analogs & derivatives*
  • Diflunisal / metabolism
  • Glucuronates / metabolism*
  • Half-Life
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Isomerism
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism*


  • Glucuronates
  • Serum Albumin
  • diflunisal glucuronide ester
  • Diflunisal