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J Biol Chem. 1992 Sep 25;267(27):19233-41.

Metabolism of 5(S)-hydroxy-6,8,11,14-eicosatetraenoic acid and other 5(S)-hydroxyeicosanoids by a specific dehydrogenase in human polymorphonuclear leukocytes.

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Meakins-Christie Laboratories, Department of Medicine, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


Human polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNL) convert 6-trans isomers of leukotriene B4 (LTB4) to dihydro metabolites (Powell, W.S., and Gravelle, F. (1988) J. Biol. Chem. 263, 2170-2177). In the present study we investigated the mechanism for the initial step in the formation of these products. We found that the 1,500 x g supernatant fraction from human PMNL converts 12-epi-6-trans-LTB4 to its 5-oxo metabolite which was identified by mass spectrometry and UV spectrophotometry. The latter compound was subsequently converted to the corresponding dihydro-oxo product, which was further metabolized to 6,11-dihydro-12-epi-6-trans-LTB4, which was the major product after longer incubation times. The 5-hydroxyeicosanoid dehydrogenase activity is localized in the microsomal fraction and requires NADP+ as a cofactor. These experiments therefore suggest that the initial step in the formation of dihydro metabolites of 6-trans isomers of LTB4 is oxidation of the 5-hydroxyl group by a microsomal dehydrogenase. Studies with a variety of substrates revealed that the microsomal dehydrogenase in human PMNL oxidizes the hydroxyl groups of a number of other eicosanoids which contain a 5(S)-hydroxyl group followed by a 6-trans double bond. There is little or no oxidation of hydroxyl groups in the 8-, 9-, 11-, 12-, or 15-positions of eicosanoids, or of the 5-hydroxyl group of LTB4, which has a 6-cis rather than a 6-trans double bond. The preferred substrate for this enzyme is 5(S)-hydroxy-6,8,11,14-eicosatetraenoic acid (5(S)-HETE) (Km, 0.2 microM), which is converted to 5-oxo-6,8,11,14-eicosatetraenoic acid. Unlike 5(S)-HETE, 5(R)-HETE is a poor substrate for the 5(S)-hydroxyeicosanoid dehydrogenase, indicating that in addition to exhibiting a high degree of positional specificity, this enzyme is also highly stereospecific. In addition to 5(S)-HETE and 6-trans isomers of LTB4, 5,15-diHETE is also a good substrate for this enzyme, being converted to 5-oxo-15-hydroxy-6,8,11,13-eicosatetraenoic acid (5-oxo-15-hydroxy-ETE). The oxidation of 5(S)-HETE to 5-oxo-ETE is reversible since human PMNL microsomes stereospecifically reduce 5-oxo-ETE to the 5(S)-hydroxy compound in the presence of NADPH. 5-Oxo-ETE is formed rapidly from 5(S)-HETE by intact human PMNL, but because of the reversibility of the reaction, its concentration only reaches about 25% that of 5(S)-HETE.

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