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Mutat Res. 1986 Dec;172(3):189-97.

Mutagenicities of indole and 30 derivatives after nitrite treatment.


Indole and 7-derivatives, L- and D-tryptophan and 9 derivatives, and beta-carboline (norharman) and 11 derivatives were tested for mutagenicity to Salmonella typhimurium TA100 and TA98 after nitrite treatment. 1-Methylindole, which is present in cigarette smoke condensate (Grob and Voellmin, 1970; Hoffmann and Rathkamp, 1970), was the most mutagenic to TA100 without S9 mix after nitrite treatment, inducing 615,000 revertants/mg. 2-Methylindole, 1-methyl-DL-tryptophan, harmaline and (-)-(1S,3S)-1,2-dimethyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-beta-carboline-3- carboxylic acid also showed strong mutagenicity after nitrite treatment, inducing 129,000, 184,000, 103,000 and 197,000 revertants/mg, respectively. These mutagenic potencies were comparable with those of benzo[alpha]pyrene, 3-methylcholanthrene and 2-amino-9H-pyrido[2,3-b]indole (A alpha C) (Sugimura, 1982). Of 31 compounds tested, 22 were mutagenic after nitrite treatment. Since various indole compounds are ubiquitous in our environment, especially in plants, the presence of their mutagenicities after nitrite treatment warrants further studies, including those on their in vivo carcinogenicities.

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