Estrogen Hydroxylation Ratio Abstracts 1

Differential inhibition of CYP1-catalyzed regioselective hydroxylation of estradiol by berberine and its oxidative metabolites.
            (Chang et al., 2015) Download
Berberine is a pharmacologically active alkaloid present in widely used medicinal plants, such as Coptis chinensis (Huang-Lian). The hormone estradiol is oxidized by cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1B1 to primarily form the genotoxic metabolite 4-hydroxyestradiol, whereas CYP1A1 and CYP1A2 predominantly generate 2-hydroxyestradiol. To illustrate the effect of berberine on the regioselective oxidation of estradiol, effects of berberine and its metabolites on CYP1 activities were studied. Among CYP1s, CYP1B1.1, 1.3 (L432V), and 1.4 (N453S)-catalyzed 4-hydroxylation were preferentially inhibited by berberine. Differing from the competitive inhibition of CYP1B1.1 and 1.3, N453S substitution in CYP1B1 allowed a non-competitive or mixed-type pattern. An N228T in CYP1B1 highly decreased its activity and preference to 4-hydroxylation. A reverse mutation of T223N in CYP1A2 retained its 2-hydroxylation preference, but enhanced its inhibition susceptibility to berberine. Compared with berberine, metabolites demethyleneberberine and thalifendine caused weaker inhibition of CYP1A1 and CYP1B1 activities. Unexpectedly, thalifendine was more potent than berberine in the inhibition of CYP1A2, in which case an enhanced interaction through polar hydrogen-π bond was predicted from the docking analysis. These results demonstrate that berberine preferentially inhibits the estradiol 4-hydroxylation activity of CYP1B1 variants, suggesting that 4-hydroxyestradiol-mediated toxicity might be reduced by berberine, especially in tissues/tumors highly expressing CYP1B1.

Estrogen metabolism and breast cancer risk among postmenopausal women: a case-cohort study within B~FIT.
            (Dallal et al., 2014) Download
Although elevated circulating estrogens are associated with increased postmenopausal breast cancer risk, less is known regarding the role of estrogen metabolism in breast carcinogenesis. We conducted a case-cohort study within the Breast and Bone Follow-up to the Fracture Intervention Trial to assess serum estrogens and estrogen metabolites (EMs) in 407 incident breast cancer cases diagnosed during follow-up and a subcohort of 496 women. In 1992-93, women completed a baseline questionnaire and provided blood samples. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), adjusted for geography and trial participation status, were estimated using Cox proportional hazard regression. Serum concentrations of EMs were measured by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. EMs (quintiles, Q) were analyzed individually, as metabolic pathways (C-2, -4 or -16) and as ratios. Elevated circulating estradiol was associated with increased breast cancer risk (HRQ5vsQ1 = 1.86; 95% CI: 1.19-2.90; P trend = 0.04). An elevated ratio of the 2-hydroxylation pathway (HRQ5vsQ1 = 0.69; 95% CI: 0.46-1.05; P trend = 0.01) and 4-hydroxylation pathway (HRQ5vsQ1 = 0.61; 95% CI: 0.40-0.93; P trend = 0.004) to parent estrogens (estradiol and estrone) was inversely associated with risk. A higher ratio of the 2/16-hydroxylation pathways was associated with reduced risk (HRQ5vsQ1 = 0.60; 95% CI: 0.40-0.90; P trend = 0.002). Increased 2- or 4-hydroxylation of parent estrogens may lower risk of postmenopausal breast cancer. Analyses of metabolic pathways may help elucidate the role of estrogen metabolism in breast carcinogenesis.

Differential Effects of Glycyrrhiza Species on Genotoxic Estrogen Metabolism: Licochalcone A Downregulates P450 1B1, whereas Isoliquiritigenin Stimulates It.
            (Dunlap et al., 2015) Download
Estrogen chemical carcinogenesis involves 4-hydroxylation of estrone/estradiol (E1/E2) by P450 1B1, generating catechol and quinone genotoxic metabolites that cause DNA mutations and initiate/promote breast cancer. Inflammation enhances this effect by upregulating P450 1B1. The present study tested the three authenticated medicinal species of licorice [Glycyrrhiza glabra (GG), G. uralensis (GU), and G. inflata (GI)] used by women as dietary supplements for their anti-inflammatory activities and their ability to modulate estrogen metabolism. The pure compounds, liquiritigenin (LigF), its chalcone isomer isoliquiritigenin (LigC), and the GI-specific licochalcone A (LicA) were also tested. The licorice extracts and compounds were evaluated for anti-inflammatory activity by measuring inhibition of iNOS activity in macrophage cells: GI ≫ GG > GU and LigC ≅ LicA ≫ LigF. The Michael acceptor chalcone, LicA, is likely responsible for the anti-inflammatory activity of GI. A sensitive LC-MS/MS assay was employed to quantify estrogen metabolism by measuring 2-MeOE1 as nontoxic and 4-MeOE1 as genotoxic biomarkers in the nontumorigenic human mammary epithelial cell line, MCF-10A. GG, GU, and LigC increased 4-MeOE1, whereas GI and LicA inhibited 2- and 4-MeOE1 levels. GG, GU (5 μg/mL), and LigC (1 μM) also enhanced P450 1B1 expression and activities, which was further increased by inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α and IFN-γ). LicA (1, 10 μM) decreased cytokine- and TCDD-induced P450 1B1 gene expression and TCDD-induced xenobiotic response element luciferase reporter (IC50 = 12.3 μM), suggesting an antagonistic effect on the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, which regulates P450 1B1. Similarly, GI (5 μg/mL) reduced cytokine- and TCDD-induced P450 1B1 gene expression. Collectively, these data suggest that, of the three licorice species that are used in botanical supplements, GI represents the most promising chemopreventive licorice extract for women's health. Additionally, the differential effects of the Glycyrrhiza species on estrogen metabolism emphasize the importance of standardization of botanical supplements to species-specific bioactive compounds.

Estrogen metabolism and mammographic density in postmenopausal women: a cross-sectional study.
            (Fuhrman et al., 2012b) Download
BACKGROUND:  Prospective studies have consistently found that postmenopausal breast cancer risk increases with circulating estrogens; however, findings from studies of estrogens and mammographic density (MD), an intermediate marker of breast cancer risk, have been inconsistent. We investigated the cross-sectional associations of urinary estrogens, and their 2-, 4-, and 16-hydroxylated metabolites with MD. METHODS:  Postmenopausal women without breast cancer (n = 194), ages 48 to 82 years, and reporting no current menopausal hormone therapy use were enrolled at a clinic in Western NY in 2005. Urinary estrogens and estrogen metabolites were measured using mass spectrometry. Percent MD and dense area (cm(2)) were measured using computer-assisted analyses of digitized films. Linear regression models were used to estimate associations of log-transformed estrogen measures with MD while adjusting for age, body mass index (BMI), parity, and past hormone therapy use. RESULTS:  Urinary concentrations of most individual estrogens and metabolites were not associated with MD; however, across the interdecile range of the ratio of parent estrogens (estrone and estradiol) to their metabolites, MD increased by 6.8 percentage points (P = 0.02) and dense area increased by 10.3 cm(2) (P = 0.03). Across the interdecile ranges of the ratios of 2-, 4-, and 16-hydroxylation pathways to the parent estrogens, MD declined by 6.2 (P = 0.03), 6.4 (P = 0.04), and 5.7 (P = 0.05) percentage points, respectively. All associations remained apparent in models without adjustment for BMI. CONCLUSION:  In this study of postmenopausal women, less extensive hydroxylation of parent estrogens was associated with higher MD. IMPACT:  Hydroxylation of estrogens may modulate postmenopausal breast cancer risk through a pathway involving MD.

Estrogen metabolism and risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women.
            (Fuhrman et al., 2012a) Download
BACKGROUND:  Estrogens are recognized causal factors in breast cancer. Interindividual variation in estrogen metabolism may also influence the risk of breast cancer and could provide clues to mechanisms of breast carcinogenesis. Long-standing hypotheses about how estrogen metabolism might influence breast cancer have not been adequately evaluated in epidemiological studies because of the lack of accurate, reproducible, and high-throughput assays for estrogen metabolites. METHODS:  We conducted a prospective case-control study nested within the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial (PLCO). Participants included 277 women who developed invasive breast cancer (case subjects) and 423 matched control subjects; at PLCO baseline, all subjects were aged 55-74 years, postmenopausal and not using hormone therapy, and provided a blood sample. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry was used to measure serum concentrations of 15 estrogens and estrogen metabolites, in unconjugated and conjugated forms, including the parent estrogens, estrone and estradiol, and estrogen metabolites in pathways defined by irreversible hydroxylation at the C-2, C-4, or C-16 positions of the steroid ring. We calculated hazard ratios (HRs) approximating risk in highest vs lowest deciles of individual estrogens and estrogen metabolites, estrogens and estrogen metabolites grouped by metabolic pathways, and metabolic pathway ratios using multivariable Cox proportional hazards models. All statistical tests were two-sided. RESULTS:  Nearly all estrogens, estrogen metabolites, and metabolic pathway groups were associated with an increased risk of breast cancer; the serum concentration of unconjugated estradiol was strongly associated with the risk of breast cancer (HR = 2.07, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.19 to 3.62). No estrogen, estrogen metabolite, or metabolic pathway group remained statistically significantly associated with the risk of breast cancer after adjusting for unconjugated estradiol. The ratio of the 2-hydroxylation pathway to parent estrogens (HR = 0.66, 95% CI = 0.51 to 0.87) and the ratio of 4-hydroxylation pathway catechols to 4-hydroxylation pathway methylated catechols (HR = 1.34, 95% CI = 1.04 to 1.72) were statistically significantly associated with the risk of breast cancer and remained so after adjustment for unconjugated estradiol. CONCLUSIONS:  More extensive 2-hydroxylation of parent estrogens is associated with lower risk, and less extensive methylation of potentially genotoxic 4-hydroxylation pathway catechols is associated with higher risk of postmenopausal breast cancer.

Urinary concentrations of estrogens and estrogen metabolites and smoking in caucasian women.
            (Gu et al., 2013) Download
BACKGROUND:  Smoking has been hypothesized to decrease biosynthesis of parent estrogens (estradiol and estrone) and increase their metabolism by 2-hydroxylation. However, comprehensive studies of smoking and estrogen metabolism by 2-, 4-, or 16-hydroxylation are sparse. METHODS:  Fifteen urinary estrogens and estrogen metabolites (jointly called EM) were measured by liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS-MS) in luteal phase urine samples collected during 1996 to 1999 from 603 premenopausal women in the Nurses' Health Study II (NHSII; 35 current, 140 former, and 428 never smokers). We calculated geometric means and percentage differences of individual EM (pmol/mg creatinine), metabolic pathway groups, and pathway ratios, by smoking status and cigarettes per day (CPD). RESULTS:  Total EM and parent estrogens were nonsignificantly lower in current compared with never smokers, with estradiol significant (P(multivariate) = 0.02). We observed nonsignificantly lower 16-pathway EM (P = 0.08) and higher 4-pathway EM (P = 0.25) and similar 2-pathway EM in current versus never smokers. EM measures among former smokers were similar to never smokers. Increasing CPD was significantly associated with lower 16-pathway EM (P-trend = 0.04) and higher 4-pathway EM (P-trend = 0.05). Increasing CPD was significantly positively associated with the ratios of 2- and 4-pathway to parent estrogens (P-trend = 0.01 and 0.002), 2- and 4-pathway to 16-pathway (P-trend = 0.02 and 0.003), and catechols to methylated catechols (P-trend = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS:  As hypothesized, we observed lower urinary levels of total EM and parent estrogens in active smokers. Our results also suggest smoking is associated with altered estrogen metabolism, specifically increased 2- and 4-hydroxylation, decreased 16-hydroxylation, and decreased catechol methylation. IMPACT:  Our study suggests how smoking might influence estrogen-related cancers and conditions.

Hops (Humulus lupulus) inhibits oxidative estrogen metabolism and estrogen-induced malignant transformation in human mammary epithelial cells (MCF-10A).
            (Hemachandra et al., 2012) Download
Long-term exposure to estrogens including those in traditional hormone replacement therapy (HRT) increases the risk of developing hormone-dependent cancers. As a result, women are turning to over-the-counter (OTC) botanical dietary supplements, such as black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa) and hops (Humulus lupulus), as natural alternatives to HRT. The two major mechanisms which likely contribute to estrogen and/or HRT cancer risk are: the estrogen receptor-mediated hormonal pathway; and the chemical carcinogenesis pathway involving formation of estrogen quinones that damage DNA and proteins, hence initiating and promoting carcinogenesis. Because, OTC botanical HRT alternatives are in widespread use, they may have the potential for chemopreventive effects on estrogen carcinogenic pathways in vivo. Therefore, the effect of OTC botanicals on estrogen-induced malignant transformation of MCF-10A cells was studied. Cytochrome P450 catalyzed hydroxylation of estradiol at the 4-position leads to an o-quinone believed to act as the proximal carcinogen. Liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry analysis of estradiol metabolites showed that 4-hydroxylation was inhibited by hops, whereas black cohosh was without effect. Estrogen-induced expression of CYP450 1B1 and CYP450 1A1 was attenuated by the hops extract. Two phenolic constituents of hops (xanthohumol, XH; 8-prenylnaringenin, 8-PN) were tested: 8-PN was a potent inhibitor, whereas XH had no effect. Finally, estrogen-induced malignant transformation of MCF-10A cells was observed to be significantly inhibited by hops (5 μg/mL) and 8-PN (50 nmol/L). These data suggest that hops extracts possess cancer chemopreventive activity through attenuation of estrogen metabolism mediated by 8-PN.

NADPH-dependent metabolism of estrone by human liver microsomes.
            (Lee et al., 2002) Download
We characterized the NADPH-dependent metabolism of estrone (E1) by liver microsomes of 21 male and 12 female human subjects. The structures of 11 hydroxylated or keto metabolites of E1 formed by human liver microsomes were identified by chromatographic and mass spectrometric analyses. 2-Hydroxylation of E1 was the dominant metabolic pathway with all human liver microsomes tested. E1 is more prone to form catechol estrogens (particularly 4-OH-E1) than 17beta-estradiol (E2) and the average ratio of E1 4-hydroxylation to 2-hydroxylation (0.24) was slightly higher than the ratio of E2 4- to 2-hydroxylation (0.20, P < 0.001). An unidentified monohydroxylated E1 metabolite (y-OH-E1) was found to be one of the major metabolites formed by human liver microsomes of both genders. 6beta-OH-E1, 16alpha-OH-E1, and 16beta-OH-E1 were also formed in significant quantities. 16alpha-hydroxylation was not a major pathway for E1 metabolism. The overall profiles for the E1 metabolites formed by male and female human liver microsomes were similar, and their average rates were not significantly different. Hepatic CYP3A4/5 activity in both male and female liver microsomes correlated strongly with the rates of formation of several hydroxyestrogen metabolites. The dominant role of hepatic CYP3A4 and CYP3A5 in the formation of these hydroxyestrogen metabolites was further confirmed by incubations of human CYP3A4 or CYP3A5 with [3H]E1 and NADPH. Notably, human CYP3A5 has very high relative activity for E1 4-hydroxylation, exceeding its activity for E1 2-hydroxylation by approximately 100%. It will be of interest to determine the potential biological functions associated with any of the E1 metabolites identified in our present study.

4-Hydroxylation of estradiol by human uterine myometrium and myoma microsomes: implications for the mechanism of uterine tumorigenesis.
            (Liehr et al., 1995) Download
Estradiol is converted to catechol estrogens via 2- and 4-hydroxylation by cytochrome P450 enzymes. 4-Hydroxyestradiol elicits biological activities distinct from estradiol, most notably an oxidant stress response induced by free radicals generated by metabolic redox cycling reactions. In this study, we have examined 2- and 4-hydroxylation of estradiol by microsomes of human uterine myometrium and of associated myomata. In all eight cases studied, estradiol 4-hydroxylation by myoma has been substantially elevated relative to surrounding myometrial tissue (minimum, 2-fold; mean, 5-fold). Estradiol 2-hydroxylation in myomata occurs at much lower rates than 4-hydroxylation (ratio of 4-hydroxyestradiol/2-hydroxyestradiol, 7.9 +/- 1.4) and does not significantly differ from rates in surrounding myometrial tissue. Rates of myometrial 2-hydroxylation of estradiol were also not significantly different from values in patients without myomata. We have used various inhibitors to establish that 4-hydroxylation is catalyzed by a completely different cytochrome P450 than 2-hydroxylation. In myoma, alpha-naphthoflavone and a set of ethynyl polycyclic hydrocarbon inhibitors (5 microM) each inhibited 4-hydroxylation more efficiently (up to 90%) than 2-hydroxylation (up to 40%), indicating > 10-fold differences in Ki (<0.5 microM vs. > 5 microM). These activities were clearly distinguished from the selective 2-hydroxylation of estradiol in placenta by aromatase reported previously (low Km, inhibition by Fadrozole hydrochloride or ICI D1033). 4-Hydroxylation was also selectively inhibited relative to 2-hydroxylation by antibodies raised against cytochrome P450 IB1 (rat) (53 vs. 17%). These data indicate that specific 4-hydroxylation of estradiol in human uterine tissues is catalyzed by a form(s) of cytochrome P450 related to P450 IB1, which contribute(s) little to 2-hydroxylation. This enzyme(s) is therefore a marker for uterine myomata and may play a role in the etiology of the tumor.

4-Hydroxylation of estrogens as marker of human mammary tumors.
            (Liehr and Ricci, 1996) Download
Estrogen is a known risk factor in human breast cancer. In rodent models, estradiol has been shown to induce tumors in those tissues in which this hormone is predominantly converted to the catechol metabolite 4-hydroxyestradiol by a specific 4-hydroxylase enzyme, whereas tumors fail to develop in organs in which 2-hydroxylation predominates. We have now found that microsomes prepared from human mammary adenocarcinoma and fibroadenoma predominantly catalyze the metabolic 4-hydroxylation of estradiol (ratios of 4-hydroxyestradiol/2-hydroxyestradiol formation in adenocarcinoma and fibroadenoma, 3.8 and 3.7, respectively). In contrast, microsomes from normal tissue obtained either from breast cancer patients or from reduction mammoplasty operations expressed comparable estradiol 2- and 4-hydroxylase activities (corresponding ratios, 1.3 and 0.7, respectively). An elevated ratio of 4-/2-hydroxyestradiol formation in neoplastic mammary tissue may therefore provide a useful marker of benign or malignant breast tumors and may indicate a mechanistic role of 4-hydroxyestradiol in tumor development.

Resveratrol prevents estrogen-DNA adduct formation and neoplastic transformation in MCF-10F cells.
            (Lu et al., 2008) Download
Exposure to estrogens is a risk factor for breast cancer. Specific estrogen metabolites may initiate breast cancer and other cancers. Genotoxicity may be caused by cytochrome P450 (CYP)-mediated oxidation of catechol estrogens to quinones that react with DNA to form depurinating estrogen-DNA adducts. CYP1B1 favors quinone formation by catalyzing estrogen 4-hydroxylation, whereas NAD(P)H quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) catalyzes the protective reduction of quinones to catechols. 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) induces CYP1B1 expression through the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR). Resveratrol has anticancer effects in diverse in vitro and in vivo systems and is an AhR antagonist that decreases CYP expression but induces NQO1 expression. The chemopreventive effect of resveratrol on breast cancer initiation was investigated in MCF-10F cells. Its effects on estrogen metabolism and formation of estrogen-DNA adducts were analyzed in culture medium by high-performance liquid chromatography, whereas its effects on CYP1B1 and NQO1 were determined by immunoblotting and immunostaining. The antitransformation effects of resveratrol were also examined. TCDD induced expression of CYP1B1 and its redistribution in the nucleus and cytoplasm. Concomitant treatment with resveratrol dose-dependently suppressed TCDD-induced expression of CYP1B1, mainly in the cytoplasm. Resveratrol dose- and time-dependently induced expression of NQO1. NQO1 is mainly in the perinuclear membrane of control cells, but resveratrol induced NQO1 and its intracellular redistribution, which involves nuclear translocation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2. Resveratrol decreased estrogen metabolism and blocked formation of DNA adducts in cells treated with TCDD and/or estradiol. Resveratrol also suppressed TCDD and/or estradiol-induced cell transformation. Thus, resveratrol can prevent breast cancer initiation by blocking multiple sites in the estrogen genotoxicity pathway.

Vitamin C and alpha-naphthoflavone prevent estrogen-induced mammary tumors and decrease oxidative stress in female ACI rats.
            (Mense et al., 2009) Download
The mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of estrogen-induced breast carcinogenesis remain unclear. The present study investigated the roles of estrogen metabolism and oxidative stress in estrogen-mediated mammary carcinogenesis in vivo. Female August Copenhagen Irish (ACI) rats were treated with 17beta-estradiol (E(2)), the antioxidant vitamin C, the estrogen metabolic inhibitor alpha-naphthoflavone (ANF), or cotreated with E(2) + vitamin C or E(2) + ANF for up to 8 months. E(2) (3 mg) was administered as an subcutaneous implant, ANF was given via diet (0.2%) and vitamin C (1%) was added to drinking water. At necropsy, breast tumor incidence in the E(2), E(2) + vitamin C and E(2) + ANF groups was 82, 29 and 0%, respectively. Vitamin C and ANF attenuated E(2)-induced alterations in oxidative stress markers in breast tissue, including 8-iso-prostane F(2alpha) formation and changes in the activities of antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase. Quantification of 2-hydroxyestradiol (2-OHE(2)) and 4-hydroxyestradiol (4-OHE(2)) formation in breast tissue confirmed that ANF inhibited 4-hydroxylation of E(2) and decreased formation of the highly carcinogenic 4-OHE(2). These results demonstrate that antioxidant vitamin C reduces the incidence of estrogen-induced mammary tumors, increases tumor latency and decreases oxidative stress in vivo. Further, our data indicate that ANF completely abrogates breast cancer development in ACI rats. The present study is the first to demonstrate the inhibition of breast carcinogenesis by antioxidant vitamin C or the estrogen metabolic inhibitor ANF in an animal model of estrogen-induced mammary carcinogenesis. Taken together, these results suggest that E(2) metabolism and oxidant stress are critically involved in estrogen-induced breast carcinogenesis.


Inhibitory effects of a dietary phytochemical 3,3'-diindolylmethane on the phenobarbital-induced hepatic CYP mRNA expression and CYP-catalyzed reactions in female rats.
            (Parkin et al., 2008) Download
3,3'-diindolylmethane (DIM), derived from indole-3-carbinol (I3C), is used as a dietary supplement for its putative anticancer effects that include suppression of mammary tumor growth in female rats. The mechanism of action DIM may involve its interaction(s) with hepatic cytochromes P450 (CYPs) catalyzing oxidations of 17beta-estradiol (E2). Our study showed that DIM added to hepatic microsomes of female Sprague-Dawley rats was primarily a competitive inhibitor of beta-naphthoflavone (beta-NF)- or I3C-induced CYP1A1 probe activity, and a potent mixed or uncompetitive inhibitor of phenobarbital (PB)-induced CYP2B1 or CYP2B2 probe activity, respectively. Microsomal metabolites of DIM were tentatively identified as two mono-hydroxy isomers of DIM, each formed preferentially by CYP1A1- or CYP2B1/2-catalyzed reaction. Evaluation of the effects of co-treatment of rats with PB and DIM by a full factorial ANOVA showed that DIM decreased the PB-induced CYP2B1 and CYP2B2 mRNA expression levels, and the rates of 2- and 4-hydroxylation of E2, and total E2 metabolite formation. The results suggest that interactions of DIM, and/or its mono-hydroxy metabolites, with CYP2B1 and CYP2B2 found to occur in hepatic microsomes upon addition of DIM or co-treatment of rats with DIM affect the rates of relevant oxidations of E2, and potentially protect against estrogen-dependent tumorigenesis.

Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) Extract and 6-Prenylnaringenin Induce P450 1A1 Catalyzed Estrogen 2-Hydroxylation.
            (Wang et al., 2016) Download
Humulus lupulus L. (hops) is a popular botanical dietary supplement used by women as a sleep aid and for postmenopausal symptom relief. In addition to its efficacy for menopausal symptoms, hops can also modulate the chemical estrogen carcinogenesis pathway and potentially protect women from breast cancer. In the present study, an enriched hop extract and the key bioactive compounds [6-prenylnarigenin (6-PN), 8-prenylnarigenin (8-PN), isoxanthohumol (IX), and xanthohumol (XH)] were tested for their effects on estrogen metabolism in breast cells (MCF-10A and MCF-7). The methoxyestrones (2-/4-MeOE1) were analyzed as biomarkers for the nontoxic P450 1A1 catalyzed 2-hydroxylation and the genotoxic P450 1B1 catalyzed 4-hydroxylation pathways, respectively. The results indicated that the hop extract and 6-PN preferentially induced the 2-hydroxylation pathway in both cell lines. 8-PN only showed slight up-regulation of metabolism in MCF-7 cells, whereas IX and XH did not have significant effects in either cell line. To further explore the influence of hops and its bioactive marker compounds on P450 1A1/1B1, mRNA expression and ethoxyresorufin O-dealkylase (EROD) activity were measured. The results correlated with the metabolism data and showed that hop extract and 6-PN preferentially enhanced P450 1A1 mRNA expression and increased P450 1A1/1B1 activity. The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activation by the isolated compounds was tested using xenobiotic response element (XRE) luciferase construct transfected cells. 6-PN was found to be an AhR agonist that significantly induced XRE activation and inhibited 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) induced XRE activity. 6-PN mediated induction of EROD activity was also inhibited by the AhR antagonist CH223191. These data show that the hop extract and 6-PN preferentially enhance the nontoxic estrogen 2-hydroxylation pathway through AhR mediated up-regulation of P450 1A1, which further emphasizes the importance of standardization of botanical extracts to multiple chemical markers for both safety and desired bioactivity.



Chang, YP, et al. (2015), ‘Differential inhibition of CYP1-catalyzed regioselective hydroxylation of estradiol by berberine and its oxidative metabolites.’, Drug Metab Pharmacokinet, 30 (5), 374-83. PubMed: 26403084
Dallal, CM, et al. (2014), ‘Estrogen metabolism and breast cancer risk among postmenopausal women: a case-cohort study within B~FIT.’, Carcinogenesis, 35 (2), 346-55. PubMed: 24213602
Dunlap, TL, et al. (2015), ‘Differential Effects of Glycyrrhiza Species on Genotoxic Estrogen Metabolism: Licochalcone A Downregulates P450 1B1, whereas Isoliquiritigenin Stimulates It.’, Chem Res Toxicol, 28 (8), 1584-94. PubMed: 26134484
Fuhrman, BJ, et al. (2012a), ‘Estrogen metabolism and risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women.’, J Natl Cancer Inst, 104 (4), 326-39. PubMed: 22232133
Fuhrman, BJ, et al. (2012b), ‘Estrogen metabolism and mammographic density in postmenopausal women: a cross-sectional study.’, Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 21 (9), 1582-91. PubMed: 22736791
Gu, F, et al. (2013), ‘Urinary concentrations of estrogens and estrogen metabolites and smoking in caucasian women.’, Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 22 (1), 58-68. PubMed: 23104668
Hemachandra, LP, et al. (2012), ‘Hops (Humulus lupulus) inhibits oxidative estrogen metabolism and estrogen-induced malignant transformation in human mammary epithelial cells (MCF-10A).’, Cancer Prev Res (Phila), 5 (1), 73-81. PubMed: 21997247
Lee, AJ, et al. (2002), ‘NADPH-dependent metabolism of estrone by human liver microsomes.’, J Pharmacol Exp Ther, 300 (3), 838-49. PubMed: 11861789
Liehr, JG, et al. (1995), ‘4-Hydroxylation of estradiol by human uterine myometrium and myoma microsomes: implications for the mechanism of uterine tumorigenesis.’, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 92 (20), 9220-24. PubMed: 7568105
Liehr, JG and MJ Ricci (1996), ‘4-Hydroxylation of estrogens as marker of human mammary tumors.’, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 93 (8), 3294-96. PubMed: 8622931
Lu, F, et al. (2008), ‘Resveratrol prevents estrogen-DNA adduct formation and neoplastic transformation in MCF-10F cells.’, Cancer Prev Res (Phila), 1 (2), 135-45. PubMed: 19138946
Mense, SM, et al. (2009), ‘Vitamin C and alpha-naphthoflavone prevent estrogen-induced mammary tumors and decrease oxidative stress in female ACI rats.’, Carcinogenesis, 30 (7), 1202-8. PubMed: 19406931
Parkin, DR, et al. (2008), ‘Inhibitory effects of a dietary phytochemical 3,3’-diindolylmethane on the phenobarbital-induced hepatic CYP mRNA expression and CYP-catalyzed reactions in female rats.’, Food Chem Toxicol, 46 (7), 2451-58. PubMed: 18486294
Wang, S, et al. (2016), ‘Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) Extract and 6-Prenylnaringenin Induce P450 1A1 Catalyzed Estrogen 2-Hydroxylation.’, Chem Res Toxicol, 29 (7), 1142-50. PubMed: 27269377