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Toxicology. 2018 May 1;400-401:20-27. doi: 10.1016/j.tox.2018.03.002. Epub 2018 Mar 13.

Comparison of the hepatic and thyroid gland effects of sodium phenobarbital in wild type and constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) knockout rats and pregnenolone-16α-carbonitrile in wild type and pregnane X receptor (PXR) knockout rats.

Author information

1
Concept Life Sciences (formerly CXR Biosciences Ltd.), 2, James Lindsay Place, Dundee Technopole, Dundee DD1 5JJ, UK.
2
Concept Life Sciences (formerly CXR Biosciences Ltd.), 2, James Lindsay Place, Dundee Technopole, Dundee DD1 5JJ, UK. Electronic address: audrey.vardy@conceptlifesciences.com.
3
Regulatory Science Associates, Kip Marina, Inverkip, Renfreshire, PA16 0AS, UK.
4
Concept Life Sciences (formerly CXR Biosciences Ltd.), 2, James Lindsay Place, Dundee Technopole, Dundee DD1 5JJ, UK; Centre for Toxicology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, GU2 7XH, UK.

Abstract

A number of chemicals produce liver and thyroid gland tumours in rodents by nongenotoxic modes of action (MOAs). In this study the hepatic and thyroid gland effects of the constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) activator sodium phenobarbital (NaPB) were examined in male Sprague-Dawley wild type (WT) rats and in CAR knockout (CAR KO) rats and the effects of the pregnane X receptor (PXR) activator pregnenolone-16α-carbonitrile (PCN) were examined in WT and PXR knockout (PXR KO) rats. Rats were either fed diets containing 0 (control) or 500 ppm NaPB or were dosed with 0 (control) or 100 mg/kg/day PCN orally for 7 days. The treatment of WT rats with NaPB and PCN for 7 days resulted in increased relative liver weight, increased hepatocyte replicative DNA synthesis (RDS) and the induction of cytochrome P450 CYP2B and CYP3A subfamily enzyme, mRNA and protein levels. In marked contrast, the treatment of CAR KO rats with NaPB and PXR KO rats with PCN did not result in any increases in liver weight and induction of CYP2B and CYP3A enzymes. The treatment of CAR KO rats with NaPB had no effect on hepatocyte RDS, while PCN produced only a small increase in hepatocyte RDS in PXR KO rats. Treatment with NaPB had no effect on thyroid gland weight in WT and CAR KO rats, whereas treatment with PCN resulted in an increase in relative thyroid gland weight in WT, but not in PXR KO, rats. Thyroid gland follicular cell RDS was increased by the treatment of WT rats with NaPB and PCN, with NaPB also producing a small increase in thyroid gland follicular cell RDS in CAR KO rats. Overall, the present study with CAR KO rats demonstrates that a functional CAR is required for NaPB-mediated increases in liver weight, stimulation of hepatocyte RDS and induction of hepatic CYP enzymes. The studies with PXR KO rats demonstrate that a functional PXR is required for PCN-mediated increases in liver weight and induction of hepatic CYP enzymes; with induction of hepatocyte RDS also being largely mediated through PXR. The hepatic effects of NaPB in CAR KO rats and of PCN in PXR KO rats are in agreement with those observed in other recent literature studies. These results suggest that CAR KO and PXR KO rats are useful experimental models for liver MOA studies with rodent CAR and PXR activators and may also be useful for thyroid gland MOA studies.

KEYWORDS:

Constitutive androstane receptor; Cytochrome P450; Pregnane X receptor; Pregnenolone-16α-carbonitrile; Receptor knockout rats; Sodium phenobarbital

PMID:
29548889
DOI:
10.1016/j.tox.2018.03.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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