Expression, induction and regulation of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system in the rat glioma C6 cell line

Jun Geng, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


The cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system consists of NADPH- cytochrome P450 reductase (P450 reductase) and cytochromes P450, which can catalyze the oxidation of a wide variety of endogenous and exogenous compounds, including steroid hormones, fatty acids, drugs, and pollutants. The functions of this system are as diverse as the substrates. P450 reductase transfers reducing equivalents from NADPH to P450, which in turn catalyzes metabolic reactions. This enzyme system has the highest level of activity in the liver. It is also present in other tissues, including brain. The functions of this enzyme system in brain seem to include: neurotransmission, neuroendocrinology, developmental and behavioral modulation, regulation of intracellular levels of cholesterol, and potential neurotoxicity. In this study, we have set up the rat glioma C6 cell line as an in vitro model system to examine the expression, induction, and tissue-specific regulation of P450s and P450 reductase. Rat glioma C6 cells were treated with P450 inducers phenobarbital (PB) or benzo(a)anthracene (BA). The presence of P450 reductase and of cytochrome P450 1A1, 1A2, 2A1, 2B1/2, 2C7, 2D1-5 and 2E1 was detected by reverse transcription followed by polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and confirmed by restriction digestion. The induction of P450 1A1 and 2B1/2 and P450 reductase was quantified using competitive PCR. Ten- and five-fold inductions of P450 1A and 2B mRNA after BA or PB treatments, respectively, were detected. Western blot analysis of microsomal preparations of glioma C6 cells demonstrated the presence of P450 1A, 2B and P450 reductase at the protein level. ELISAs showed that BA and PB induce P450 1A and 2B proteins 7.3- and 13.5-fold, respectively. Microsomes prepared from rat glioma C6 cells showed cytochrome P450 CO difference spectra with absorption at or near 450 nm. Microsomes prepared from rat glioma C6 cells demonstrated much higher levels of ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD) and pentoxyresorufin O-dealkylase (PROD) activity, when treated with BA or PB, respectively. These experiments provide further evidence that the rat glioma C6 cell line contains an active cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system which can be induced by P450 inducers. The mRNAs of P450 1A1 and 2B1/2 can not bind to the oligo(dT) column efficiently, indicating they have very short poly(A) tails. This finding leads us to study the tissue specific regulation of P450s at post-transcriptional level. The half lives of P450 1A1 and 2B1/2 mRNA in glioma C6 cells are only 1/10 and 1/3 of that in liver. This may partly contribute to the low expression level of P450s in glial cells. The induction of P450s by BA or PB did not change their mRNA half lives, indicating the induction may be due to transcriptional regulation. In summary of this study, we believe the presence of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system in glial cells of the brain may be important in chemotherapy and carcinogenesis of brain tumors.

Subject Area

Molecular biology|Pharmacology|Genetics

Recommended Citation

Geng, Jun, "Expression, induction and regulation of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase system in the rat glioma C6 cell line" (1996). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI9707552.