Regulation of onset of development of UDP-glucuronosyltransferase activity towards o-aminophenol by glucocorticoids in late-foetal rat liver in utero.
ABSTRACT: 1. A precocious development of UDP-glucuronosyltransferase activity (EC 188.8.131.52) towards o-aminophenol is demonstrated in 15-17 day foetal rat liver in utero after dexamethasone administration to the mother. 2. This stimulation of liver transferase activity in utero is directly proportional to the dose of dexamethasone infected. 3. Precocious development of transferase activity in utero can also be effected with the natural glucocorticoid cortisol by multiple injections of large amounts of this hormone into the mother. 4. Transferase activity towards o-aminophenolin foetal lung, kidney and upper alimentary tract can also be precociously stimulated by dexamethasone in 17-day foetuses in utero. 5. Natural development of hepatic transferase activity between days 18 and 20 of gestation is retarded after foetal hypophysectomy by decapitation in utero. 6. Overall glucuronidation of o-aminophenol, as observed in foetal rat liver, is also precociously stimulated by dexamethasone. 7. From this and from evidence previously presented we suggest that glucocorticoids, which are known to increase in rat foetuses between days 17 and 20 of gestation, trigger the normal development in utero of hepatic transferase activity towards o-aminophenol which occurs at that time. We also suggest that these hormones are responsible for the rise in activity of the enzyme in foetal lung, kidney and upper alimentary tract which occurs during the same gestational period.
Project description:1. Precocious development of mammalian UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (EC 184.108.40.206.7) induced by endogenous compounds of known chemical composition is reported for the first time. 2. This development occurs in cultured explants of foetal rat liver when exposed to corticosteroids possessing a pregn-4'-ene structure and a hydroxy or an oxo group at C-11. 3. Explants from 14-day foetuses cultured for 3 days in a chemically defined medium containing dexamethasone exhibited transferase activities towards o-aminophenol within adult male values. Those liver transferase activities attained in utero by 17 days were still negligible. 4. Evidence from several approaches indicated that the explants required glucocorticoids for expression of the transferase, not for maintenance of viability. 5. Glucocorticoid-dependent stimulation of transferase activity required incorporation of L-[14C]leucine into protein, as judged from the pulsing of cultures with cycloheximide. 6. The relevance of these culture experiments to the situation in vivo is discussed.
Project description:1. UDP-glucuronosyltransferase activity towards 12 substrates has been assessed in rat liver during the perinatal period. 2. Between days 16 and 20 of gestation, enzyme activities towards the substrates 2-aminophenol, 2-aminobenzoate, 4-nitrophenol, 1-naphthol, 4-methylumbelliferone and 5-hydroxytryptamine (the 'late foetal' group) surge to reach adult values, while activities towards bilirubin, testosterone, beta-oestradiol, morphine, phenolphthalein, and chloramphenicol (the 'neonatal' group) remain negligible or at less than 10% of adult values. 3. By the second postnatal day, enzyme activities towards the neonatal group have attained, or approached adult values. 4. Dexamethasone precociously stimulates in 17-day foetal liver in utero transferase activities in the late foetal, but not the neonatal group. A similar inductive pattern is found for 15-day foetal liver in organ culture. 5. It is suggested that foetal glucocorticoids, whose synthesis markedly increases between days 16 and 20 of gestation, are responsibile for triggering the simultaneous surge of all the hepatic UDP-glucuronosyltransferase activities in the late foetal group. The neonatal group of activities apparently require a different or additional stimulus for their appearance. 6. The relationship of these two groups of transferase activities to other similar groups observed during induction by xenobiotics and enzyme purification is discussed.
Project description:1. A simple colorimetric assay for UDP-glucuronosyltransferase activities towards phenolic substrates, using Folin & Ciocalteu's phenol reagent, is described. The assay is used to measure rat liver transferase activities towards substrates from a series of 4-alkyl-substituted phenols. 2. Activities towards phenol, 4-methylphenol and 4-ethylphenol develop near-adult values before birth, are precociously stimulated by dexa methasone in utero and are stimulated 3--4-fold by 3-methylcholanthrene in adult liver. These are assigned to a "late-foetal" group of transferase activities. 3. Activities towards 4-n-propylphenol, 4-s-butylphenol and 4-t-butylphenol are negligible in late-foetal liver, developing to near-adult values in the first 4 postnatal days, and are not affected by dexamethasone or 3-methylcholanthrene. They are assigned to a "neonatal" group of transferase activities. 4. Although 4-ethylphenol and 4-n-propylphenol differ only by a single --CH2-- moiety, this is sufficient to change the acceptability of these substrates respectively from the late-foetal to the neonatal group of transferase activities. The change is distinct, with no overlapping of substrate acceptability between the two groups of transferase activities. 5. From consideration of the above and other substrates, the two groups of transferase activities do not distinguish substrates on the basis of their molecular weights or lipophilicity. The distinguishing feature appears to be the specific molecular configurations of the substrates.
Project description:A specific tyrosine aminotransferase, separate from the aspartate aminotransferases, is present in low concentration in foetal rat liver at the 21st day of gestation. Intraperitoneal injections of tyrosine methyl ester into the foetuses in utero increase the activity 2-fold, whereas glucose injections decrease it. Tyrosine, dexamethasone and dibutyryl cyclic AMP induce the enzyme activity in organ culture to the same extent as in adult rat liver in vivo.
Project description:The hepatic enzyme tyrosine aminotransferase, normally expressed in very low amounts until shortly after birth, is prematurely induced in foetal rats made diabetic by the administration of streptozotocin in utero. Similarly, the enzyme is precociously induced in foetuses if the circulating insulin concentration is artificially decreased by the administration of anti-insulin serum. These observations support the proposal that the natural decrease in plasma insulin, known to occur at birth, is a major contributor to the postnatal induction of tyrosine aminotransferase.
Project description:1. The administration of dexamethasone to foetal rats in utero does not result in the appearance of specific tyrosine aminotransferase activity even after 24 h. 2. When foetal hepatocytes are cultured in vitro from animals treated in utero with dexamethasone, significantly higher activities of specific tyrosine aminotransferase are found than in untreated controls. 3. Dexamethasone in vitro induces specific tyrosine aminotransferase in cells cultured from control animals and the effect is maximal at 10 nM in the culture medium. 4. Actinomycin D at 0.2 microgram/ml in the culture medium completely prevents the induction of activity in vitro. 5. In cultures established from animals treated with dexamethasone in utero, the increase in specific tyrosine aminotransferase activity over the control cultures is only marginally decreased in the presence of actinomycin D. 6. The results can be interpreted to mean that dexamethasone in utero stimulates the transcription of enzyme-specific mRNA, which is not rranslated until a translational block in the foetal liver is removed by the conditions of culture in vitro.
Project description:1. Precocious development of UDP-glucuronyltransferase (EC 220.127.116.11) and of glucuronidation by endogenous compounds of known chemical composition is reported for the first time. 2. This development occurs precociously in chick-embryo liver after administration to the egg of mammalian adrenocorticotropic hormone, of Synacthen (a synthetic compound possessing adrenocorticotropic activity), or of certain corticosteroids possessing a hydroxy or an oxo group at C-11. 3. Corticosterone-dependent transferase development parallels the rise of infused corticosterone in plasma, but does not require the presence of embryo pituitary in ovo, and is demonstrable in embryo liver explants in vitro. 4. Competence of embryo liver transferase to respond to corticosterone (or dexamethasone) begins over days 13-14, the time of competence to respond to grafted pituitary gland. 5. The transferase appearing after treatment with corticosterone or adrenocorticotropic hormone, like that appearing after pituitary grafting or on natural development and unlike that from the untreated embryo, is markedly activated by membrane-perturbation procedures, suggesting it appears through induction, not activation. 6. Thyroxine and tri-iodothyronine accelerate transferase development after treatment with adrenocorticotropic hormone or corticosteroid to the rate seen after pituitary grafting. 7. A wide range of other hormones and steroids did not obviously influence transferase development in this system. 8. We suggest that grafted pituitary gland evokes precocious transferase development in embryo liver through production of adrenocorticotropic hormone and hence of the active corticosteroids; thyrotropin and thyroxine hasten the process. The role of this mechanism in the natural development of UDP-glucuronyltransferase is discussed.
Project description:Glutathione S-transferase activity was measured in partially purified haemolysates of erythrocytes from human foetuses and adults. Enzyme activity was present in erythrocytes obtained between 12 and 40 weeks of gestation. The catalytic properties of the enzyme from foetal cells were similar to those of the enzyme from adult erythrocytes, indicating that probably only one form of the erythrocytes enzyme exists throughout foetal and adult life.
Project description:UDP-glucuronyltransferase was assayed in liver from adult rhesus monkeys and foetuses during late gestation. Activities toward 2-aminophenol, 5-hydroxytryptamine, 1-naphthol and 4-nitrophenol in the foetal liver ranged from 46 to 114% of adult values, whereas activities toward bilirubin, oestradiol and testosterone were less than 5% of adult values. This suggests that in primates UDP-glucuronyltransferase develops differentially in two clusters analogous to that in the rat.
Project description:1. The mechanism that underlies the induction of glycogen synthesis in the foetal rat liver by glucocorticoids was reinvestigated in conditions where the accumulation of glycogen is either precociously induced with dexamethasone or inhibited by steroid deprivation. It appears that glucocorticoids act as the physiological trigger for glycogen synthesis by inducing both glycogen synthase (a known effect) and its activating enzyme, glycogen synthase phosphatase. 2. The activity of glycogen synthase phosphatase in adult liver stems from the interaction of two protein components [Doperé, Vanstapel & Stalmans (1980) Eur. J. Biochem. 104, 137--146]. Two independent experimental approaches indicate that the cytosolic 'S-component' is already well developed in the foetal liver before the onset of glycogen synthesis. The manifold glucocorticoid-dependent increase in synthase phosphatase activity during late gestation must be attributed to the specific development of the glycogen-bound 'G-component'.