Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Drug Metab Rev. 2005;37(2):311-25.

Oxidative stress mediated idiosyncratic drug toxicity.

Author information

Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


The following describes a novel screening method for "new chemical entities" (NCEs), suitable for ADMET studies, that measures ability to form prooxidant radicals on metabolism and their ability to induce oxidative stress in intact cells. The accelerated molecular cytotoxic mechanism screening (ACMS) techniques used with isolated rat hepatocytes showed that cytotoxicity is usually initiated as a result of macromolecular covalent binding or macromolecular oxidative stress. While P450 is likely responsible for drug metabolic activation in the liver, intestine, lung, and in other nonhepatic tissues, where P450 levels are low, peroxidases including prostaglandin synthetase peroxidase can catalyze xenobiotic one-electron oxidation to form prooxidant free radicals that may cause toxicity or carcinogenesis. Inflammation markedly activates H2O2, generating NADPH oxidase and peroxidase of certain immune cells when they infiltrate tissues including the liver. Myeloperoxidase and NADPH oxidase in the Kupffer cells (resident macrophages of the liver) also become activated during inflammation. The addition of noncytotoxic concentrations of peroxidase/H2O2 to the hepatocyte incubate markedly increased drug cytotoxicity and prooxidant radical formation as shown by glutathione or lipid oxidation. Many drugs that have hepato- or gastrointestinal (GI) toxicity problems or were withdrawn from the market for safety problems, e.g., troglitazone, tolcapone, mefenamic acid, diclofenac, and phenylbutazone, were markedly more toxic and prooxidant in this inflammation model system, whereas other drugs, e.g., entacapone, were not toxic in this inflammation model. Some of the idiosyncratic hepatotoxicity responsible for recent drug withdrawals may therefore result from commonplace sporadic inflammatory episodes during drug therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Taylor & Francis
    Loading ...
    Support Center