Key words Cyclosporin G
Cytochrome P-450 3A
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract FK506, cyclosporin A (CsA), and its structural analog cyclosporin G (CsG) are immunosuppressant drugs mainly metabolized by hepatic cytochrome P-450 3A (CYP 3A) oxygenase. FK506 metabolites exhibit greater toxicity than the parent drug, while CsA metabolites are far less toxic than CsA itself. The aim of our study was to compare the toxicity of CsG with CsA and FK506 as a function of CYP 3A induction. Hepatocytes from Wistar rats with or without dexamethasone (DEX) induction (200 mg/kg per day, p.o for 4 days) were used in primary culture. The DEX-inductive effect on CYP 3A was assessed by SDS-PAGE. After 6 h incubation with CsG, CsA or FK506 (5 to 200 μM), cell viability (expressed as IC50), intracellular calcium content and apoptosis were evaluated. Concerning cytotoxicity, IC50 values for CsG, CsA and FK506 were 75, 50 and 180 μM respectively in non-induced cultures, and 150, 120 and 25 μM in induced cultures. For intracellular calcium content, a dose-dependent increase was observed in all cultures. However this increase is more important for CsG and CsA in non-induced cultures (150%) compared to induced cultures (110%) at 150 μM. Conversely for FK506, this increase is greater in induced cultures (150%) than in non-induced cultures (127%). Estimation of the percentage of apoptotic cells shows similar variations. Our results show that the toxicity of the three drugs in rat hepatocytes is dependent on CYP 3A induction: increased for FK506, decreased for CsA and CsG. Moreover, with regard to the three tests used, the toxic effects of CsG are close to those of CsA, indicating that CsG metabolites are also less toxic than the parent drug.
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