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J Pharm Sci. 2000 Feb;89(2):191-8.

Isolation and identification of metabolites of porfiromycin formed in the presence of a rat liver preparation.

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Department of Development, Vion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Four Science Park, New Haven, Connecticut 06511, USA.


The isolation and identification of the major metabolites of porfiromycin formed in the presence of a rat liver preparation under aerobic conditions were performed with high-performance liquid chromatography and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. Porfiromycin was extensively metabolized by the rat liver preparation in an aqueous 0.1 M potassium phosphate buffer (pH 7.4) containing an NADPH generating system at 37 degrees C. A total of eight metabolites was identified as mitosene analogs. Of these, three primary metabolites are 2-methylamino-7-aminomitosene, 1,2-cis and 1,2-trans-1-hydroxy-2-methylamino-7-aminomitosene, which are consistent with those previously observed in hypoxia using purified rat liver NADPH-cytochrome c reductase. Interestingly, 2-methylamino-7-aminomitosene is a reactive metabolite, which undergoes further activation at the C-10 position by the loss of carbamic acid and then links with the 7-amino group of the primary metabolites to yield two dimeric adducts. In addition, three phosphate adducts, 10-decarbamoyl-2-methylamino-7-aminomitosene-10-phosphate, 1,2-cis and 1,2-trans-2-methylamino-7-aminomitosene-1-phosphate, were also identified in the incubation system. The configurations of the diastereoisomeric metabolites were determined with (1)HNMR and phosphatase digestion. On the basis of the metabolite profile, we propose in vitro metabolic pathways for porfiromycin. The findings provide direct evidence for understanding the reactive nature and hepatic metabolism of the drug currently in phase III clinical trials.

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