The methylating carcinogen 1,2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH) CAS 540.73.8 is highly organ-specific and, under certain experimental conditions, produces a high incidence of adenocarcinoma in the colon of rodents. We have tried to assess the possibility that part of the organ-specifity in the carcinogenic effect of DMH could be attributed to its metabolism by specific microsomal enzymes. In particular, we compared the in vitro effects of DMH in the presence of either colon or liver microsomes from animals that had been treated with microsomal enzyme inducers. V79 Chinese hamster cells were used as the target to evaluate the damage to the genetic material, as judged by (1) formation of adducts of DNA bases and (2) amino acid modifications in nuclear proteins using [Me-14C]DMH and appropriate analytical detection systems. Our results tend to support the above postulated hypothesis.
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