Role of N-acetyltransferase phenotypes in bladder carcinogenesis: a pharmacogenetic epidemiological approach to bladder cancer

Lancet. 1982 Oct 16;2(8303):842-5. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(82)90810-8.


A large excess of patients with bladder cancer who have previously been exposed to N-substituted aryl compounds as a result of the production of dyestuff intermediates have the slow phenotype of the enzyme N-acetyltransferase. Among bladder-cancer patients in general, those presenting with T3 or T4 disease or carcinoma-in-situ also show an excess of the slower subtypes. Either N-substituted aryl compounds more frequently produce tumours with this invasive potential if linked with slow acetylation or slow acetylators are more susceptible to tumour production when exposed to some N-substituted aryl compounds. It is suggested that acetylator status could be used to identify susceptible individuals in potentially hazardous occupations.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylation
  • Acetyltransferases / adverse effects*
  • Arylamine N-Acetyltransferase / adverse effects*
  • Arylamine N-Acetyltransferase / genetics
  • Carcinoma in Situ / chemically induced*
  • Carcinoma in Situ / genetics
  • Carcinoma in Situ / pathology
  • Coloring Agents / adverse effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Occupational Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Phenotype
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Species Specificity
  • Time Factors
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / chemically induced*
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / genetics
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / pathology


  • Coloring Agents
  • Acetyltransferases
  • Arylamine N-Acetyltransferase