We have investigated the correlation between DNA adduct levels and aryl hydrocarbon hydroxylase (AHH) activity in peripheral lymphocyte samples obtained from 42 lung cancer patients. DNA adducts and AHH activity were determined by the 32P-postlabelling technique and the fluorometric method, respectively. The mean±SD of DNA adduct level was 0.88 ± 0.37 (ranged from 0.22 to 1.90) per 108 nucleotides. The geometric means of non-induced and 3- methylcholanthrene (MC)-induced AHH activity, as well as AHH inducibility (MC-induced AHH activity/non-induced AHH activity) were 0.029, 0.228 pmol min-1 10-6 cells, and 7,776, respectively. There was no statistically significant correlation between DNA adduct levels and non-induced or MC- induced AHH activity. A tendency of positive correlation was found between DNA adduct levels and AHH inducibility for the all subjects (n=42, r=0.25, p=0.11). Such a positive correlation reached statistical significance in the subjects with squamous cell carcinoma (n=13, r=0.70, p < 0.01). In addition, similar correlation of DNA adducts with AHH inducibility was also observed in the GSTM1 present genotype (n = 17, r = 0.44, p = 0.07) and GSTP1-AA genotype (n = 29, r = 0.37, p = 0.05) individuals. These findings suggest that DNA adduct levels are mediated by CYP1A1 enzyme, and AHH inducibility may be a more relevant indicator than specific AHH activity for explaining the variation of DNA adduct levels in lymphocytes.
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