Cytochrome P450 2J2 (CYP2J2), a key enzyme responsible for oxidative metabolism of various xenobiotics and endogenous compounds, participates in a diverse array of physiological and pathological processes in humans. Its biological role in tumorigenesis and cancer diagnosis remains poorly understood, owing to the lack of molecular tools suitable for real-time monitoring CYP2J2 in complex biological systems. Using molecular design principles we were able to modify the distance between the catalytic unit and metabolic recognition moiety, allowing us to develop a CYP2J2 selective fluorescent probe using a near-infrared fluorophore (E)-2-(2-(6-hydroxy-2, 3-dihydro-1H-xanthen-4-yl)vinyl)-3,3- dimethyl-1-propyl-3H-indol-1-ium iodide (HXPI). To improve the reactivity and isoform specificity, a self-immolative linker was introduced to the HXPI derivatives in order to better fit the narrow substrate channel of CYP2J2, the modification effectively shortened the spatial distance between the metabolic moiety (O-alkyl group) and catalytic center of CYP2J2. After screening a panel of O-alkylated HXPI derivatives, BnXPI displayed the best combination of specificity, sensitivity and applicability for detecting CYP2J2 in vitro and in vivo. Upon O-demethylation by CYP2J2, a self-immolative reaction occurred spontaneously via 1,6-elimination of p-hydroxybenzyl resulting in the release of HXPI. Allowing BnXPI to be successfully used to monitor CYP2J2 activity in real-time for various living systems including cells, tumor tissues, and tumor-bearing animals. In summary, our practical strategy could help the development of a highly specific and broadly applicable tool for monitoring CYP2J2, which offers great promise for exploring the biological functions of CYP2J2 in tumorigenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry