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Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2001 Aug;52(2):129-36.

Effects of anticancer drugs on the metabolism of the anticancer drug 5,6-dimethylxanthenone-4-acetic (DMXAA) by human liver microsomes.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Pharmacology and Auckland Cancer Society Research Centre, The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.



To investigate the effects of various anticancer drugs on the major metabolic pathways (glucuronidation and 6-methylhydroxylation) of DMXAA in human liver microsomes.


The effects of various anticancer drugs at 100 and 500 microM on the formation of DMXAA acyl glucuronide (DMXAA-G) and 6-hydroxymethyl-5-methylxanthenone-4-acetic acid (6-OH-MXAA) in human liver microsomes were determined by high performance liquid chromatography (h.p.l.c.). For those anticancer drugs showing significant inhibition of DMXAA metabolism, the inhibition constants (Ki) were determined. The resulting in vitro data were extrapolated to predict in vivo changes in DMXAA pharmacokinetics.


Vinblastine, vincristine and amsacrine at 500 microM significantly (P < 0.05) inhibited DMXAA glucuronidation (Ki = 319, 350 and 230 microM, respectively), but not 6-methylhydroxylation in human liver microsomes. Daunorubicin and N-[2-(dimethylamino)-ethyl]acridine-4-carboxamide (DACA) at 100 and 500 microM showed significant (P < 0.05) inhibition of DMXAA 6-methylhydroxylation (Ki = 131 and 0.59 microM, respectively), but not glucuronidation. Other drugs such as 5-fluoroucacil, paclitaxel, tirapazamine and methotrexate exhibited little or negligible inhibition of the metabolism of DMXAA. Pre-incubation of microsomes with the anticancer drugs (100 and 500 microM) did not enhance their inhibitory effects on DMXAA metabolism. Prediction of DMXAA-drug interactions in vivo based on these in vitro data indicated that all the anticancer drugs investigated except DACA appear unlikely to alter the pharmacokinetics of DMXAA, whereas DACA may increase the plasma AUC of DMXAA by 6%.


These results indicate that alteration of the pharmacokinetics of DMXAA appears unlikely when used in combination with other common anticancer drugs. However, this does not rule out the possibility of pharmacokinetic interactions with other drugs used concurrently with this combination of anticancer drugs.

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