Determination of sulfotransferase forms involved in the metabolic activation of the genotoxicant 1-hydroxymethylpyrene using bacterially expressed enzymes and genetically modified mouse models

Chem Res Toxicol. 2014 Jun 16;27(6):1060-9. doi: 10.1021/tx500129g. Epub 2014 May 22.


1-Methylpyrene, a carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, forms benzylic DNA adducts, in particular N2-(1-methylpyrenyl)-2'-deoxyguanosine, in mice and rats. It is bioactivated via 1-hydroxymethylpyrene (1-HMP) to electrophilic 1-sulfooxymethylpyrene (1-SMP). In this study, we explored the role of individual mouse sulfotransferase (SULT) forms in this activation. First, we showed that all nine mouse SULTs tested were able to activate 1-HMP to a mutagen in the his- Salmonella typhimurium reversion test. Some activation was even observed with Sult2a3 and Sult5a1, orphan forms for which no substrates were identified hitherto. Subsequently, we used cytosolic preparations from tissues of four mouse lines (wild-type, Sult1a1-, Sult1d1-, and transgenic for human SULT1A1/2) for the activation of 1-HMP in the mutagenicity assay. The most prominent impacts of the genetic SULT status were 96% decrease in hepatic activation by Sult1a1 knockout, 99% decrease in renal activation by Sult1d1 knockout, and 100-fold increase in pulmonary activation by transgenic human SULT1A1/2. Finally, we treated the various mouse lines with 1-HMP (19.3 mg/kg, intraperitoneally), and then determined 1-SMP levels in plasma and DNA adducts in tissues. Transgenic human SULT1A1/2 strongly enhanced 1-SMP plasma levels and DNA adduct formation in the liver, lung, heart, and kidney but not in the colon. Sult1a1 and Sult1d1 knockout reduced plasma 1-SMP levels as well as DNA adduct formation in some tissues (strongest effects: 97% decrease in 1-SMP and 89% decrease in hepatic adducts in Sult1a1- mice). The adduct levels detected in various tissues did not accurately reflect the activation capacity of these tissues determined in vitro, probably due to the distribution of the reactive metabolite 1-SMP via the circulation. In conclusion, we demonstrated that many mouse SULT forms are able to activate 1-HMP. In vivo, we verified a prominent role of Sult1a1 in hepatic and renal adduct formation and a smaller but unambiguous role of Sult1d1, and demonstrated the strong impact of transgenic human SULT1A1/2.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arylsulfotransferase / deficiency
  • Arylsulfotransferase / genetics
  • Arylsulfotransferase / metabolism*
  • DNA Adducts / drug effects
  • DNA Adducts / metabolism
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Molecular Structure
  • Pyrenes / administration & dosage
  • Pyrenes / metabolism*
  • Pyrenes / pharmacology
  • Salmonella typhimurium / drug effects
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / metabolism*


  • DNA Adducts
  • Pyrenes
  • 1-hydroxymethylpyrene
  • Arylsulfotransferase
  • Sult1a1 protein, mouse
  • Sult1c1 protein, mouse