DNA sequence-specific adenine alkylation by the novel antitumor drug tallimustine (FCE 24517), a benzoyl nitrogen mustard derivative of distamycin

M. Broggini, H. M. Coley, N. Mongelli, E. Pesenti, M. D. Wyatt, J. A. Hartley, M. D'Incalci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

FCE 24517, a novel distamycin derivative possessing potent antitumor activity, is under initial clinical investigation in Europe. In spite of the presence of a benzoyl nitrogen mustard group this compound fails to alkylate the N7 position of guanine, the major site of alkylation by conventional nitrogen mustards. Characterisation of DNA-drug adducts revealed only a very low level of adenine adduct formation. Using a modified Maxam-Gilbert sequencing method the consensus sequence for FCE 24517-adenine adduct formation was found to be 5'-TTTTGA-3'. A single base modification in the hexamer completely abolishes the alkylation of adenine. Using a Taq polymerase stop assay alkylations were confirmed at the A present in the hexamer TTTTGA and, in addition, in one out of three TTTTAA sequences present in the plasmid utilized. The sequence specificity of alkylation by FCE 24517 is therefore the most striking yet observed for an alkylating agent of small molecular weight.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-87
Number of pages7
JournalNucleic Acids Research
Volume23
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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