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Cancer Res. 1999 May 1;59(9):2091-5.

Mutagenic potential of alpha-(N2-deoxyguanosinyl)tamoxifen lesions, the major DNA adducts detected in endometrial tissues of patients treated with tamoxifen.

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Department of Pharmacological Sciences, State University of New York at Stony Brook, 11794-8651, USA.


Breast cancer patients treated with the antiestrogen tamoxifen (TAM) show an increased risk of developing endometrial cancer. We have recently detected TAM-DNA adducts in endometrium obtained from patients treated with TAM and identified them as trans- and cis-forms of alpha-(N2-deoxyguanosinyl)tamoxifen (dG-N2-TAM). To explore the mutagenic properties of these TAM-DNA adducts, we prepared site-specifically modified oligodeoxynucleotides containing a single isomer of dG-N2-TAM by reacting a 15-mer oligodeoxynucleotide containing a single dG (5'-TCCTCCTCGCCTCTC) with tamoxifen alpha-sulfate. These modified oligodeoxynucleotides were inserted into a single-stranded shuttle vector to investigate mutagenic specificities of the adducts in simian kidney (COS-7) cells. An epimer of dG-N2-trans-TAM showed targeted mutations ranging from 0.7 to 1.5%. The other dG-N2-trans-TAM adduct showed 9.6% G-->T transversions, accompanied by 2.8% G-->A transitions. Both dG-N2-cis-TAM adducts showed similar mutation spectra, where G-->T transversions (11-12%) predominated, along with a small number of G-->A transitions and G-->C transversions. Thus, dG-N2-TAMs are mutagenic lesions in mammalian cells. The tamoxifen-DNA adducts detected in patient endometrium may cause mutations and initiate endometrial cancer.

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