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Mitotane induces CYP3A4 expression via activation of the steroid and xenobiotic receptor.

J Endocrinol. 2012 Nov 22;

Authors: Takeshita A, Igarashi-Migitaka J, Koibuchi N, Takeuchi Y


Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare disease with an extremely poor prognosis. Mitotane alone or in combination with other cytotoxic drugs is a common therapeutic option for ACC. In addition to its adrenolytic function, mitotane has been known for decades to increase the metabolic clearance of glucocorticoids. It was recently shown that the tyrosine kinase inhibitor sunitinib is also rapidly metabolized in patients treated with mitotane, indicating that mitotane engages in clinically relevant drug interactions. Although the precise mechanism of these interactions is not well understood, cytochrome P450 mono-oxygenase 3A4 (CYP3A4) is a key enzyme to inactivate both glucocorticoids and sunitinib. The nuclear receptor, steroid and xenobiotic receptor (SXR), is one of the key transcriptional regulators of CYP3A4 gene expression in the liver and intestine. A variety of xenobiotics binds to SXR and stimulates transcription of xenobiotic-response elements (XREs) located in the CYP3A4 gene promoter. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of mitotane on SXR-mediated transcription in vitro by luciferase reporter analysis, SXR-steroid receptor coactivator 1 (SRC-1) interactions, quantitative real-time PCR analysis of CYP3A4 expression, SXR knockdown, and CYP3A4 enzyme activity assays using human hepatocyte-derived cells. We found that mitotane activated SXR-mediated transcription of the XREs. Mitotane recruited SRC-1 to the ligand-binding domain of SXR. Mitotane increased CYP3A4 mRNA levels, which was attenuated by SXR knockdown. Finally, we showed that mitotane increased CYP3A4 enzyme activity. We conclude that mitotane can induce CYP3A4 gene expression and suggest that mitotane be used cautiously due to its drug-drug interactions.

PMID: 23179081 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]