Reactions of Formaldehyde plus Acetaldehyde with Deoxyguanosine and DNA: Formation of Cyclic Deoxyguanosine Adducts and Formaldehyde Cross-Links

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Chemistry | Physical Sciences and Mathematics


We investigated the reactions of formaldehyde plus acetaldehyde with dGuo and DNA in order to determine whether certain 1,N(2)-propano-dGuo adducts could be formed. These adducts-3-(2'-deoxyribosyl)-5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-8-hydroxypyrimido[1,2-a]purine-(3H)-one (1) and 3-(2'-deoxyribosyl)-5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-6-hydroxypyrimido[1,2-a]purine-(3H)-one (3a,b)-have been previously characterized as products of the reaction of acrolein with dGuo and DNA. Adduct 1 predominates in certain model lipid peroxidation systems [Pan, J., and Chung, F. L. (2002) Chem. Res. Toxicol. 15, 367-372]. We hypothesized that this could be due to stepwise reactions of formaldehyde and acetaldehyde with dGuo, rather than by reaction of acrolein with dGuo. The results demonstrated that adducts 1 and 3a,b were relatively minor products of the reaction of formaldehyde and acetaldehyde with dGuo and that there was no selectivity in their formation. These findings did not support our hypothesis. However, substantial amounts of previously unknown cyclic dGuo adducts were identified in this reaction. The new adducts were characterized by their MS, UV, and NMR spectra as diastereomers of 3-(2'-deoxyribosyl)-6-methyl-1,3,5-diazinan[4,5-a]purin-10(3H)-one (10a,b). Adducts 10a,b were apparently formed by addition of formaldehyde to N1 of N(2)-ethylidene-dGuo, followed by cyclization. An analogous set of four diastereomers of 3-(2'-deoxyribosyl)-6,8-dimethyl-1,3,5-diazinan[4,5-a]purin-10(3H)-one (12a-d) were formed in the reactions of acetaldehyde with dGuo. These products are the first examples of exocyclic dGuo adducts of the pyrimido[1,2-a]purine type in which an oxygen atom is incorporated into the exocyclic ring. Formaldehyde-derived adducts were the other major products of the reactions of formaldehyde plus acetaldehyde with dGuo. Prominent among these were N(2)-hydroxymethyl-dGuo (9) and the cross-link di-(N(2)-deoxyguaonosyl)methane (13). We did not detect adducts 1, 3a,b, or 10a,b in enzymatic hydrolysates of DNA that had been allowed to react with formaldehyde plus acetaldehyde. However, we did detect substantial amounts of the formaldehyde cross-links di-(N(6)-deoxyadenosyl)methane (17), with lesser quantities of (N(6)-deoxyadenosyl-N(2)-deoxyguanosyl)methane (18), di-(N(2)-deoxyguanosyl)methane (13), and N(6)-hydroxymethyl-dAdo (19). Schiff base adducts of formaldehyde and acetaldehyde were also detected in these reactions. These results demonstrate that the reactions of formaldehyde plus acetaldehyde with dGuo are dominated by newly identified cyclic adducts and formaldehyde-derived products whereas the reactions with DNA result in the formation of formaldehyde cross-link adducts. The carcinogens formaldehdye and acetaldehyde occur in considerable quantities in the human body and in the environment. Therefore, further research is required to determine whether the adducts described here are formed in animals or humans exposed to these agents.