Modification of DNA Repair Processes Induced by Nitrosamines

  • R. Montesano
  • H. Bresil
  • G. Planche-Martel
  • A. E. Pegg
  • G. Margison
Part of the Basic Life Sciences book series


The repair of DNA damage induced by various chemical and physical carcinogenic agents appears to be a critical determinant of mutagenesis and of the initiation of the carcinogenic process (1–3). The alkylating agents, especially the N-nitroso compounds, show a high degree of species, tissue, and cell specificity in their carcinogenic effects, which appear to be governed by the following major factors: systemic distribution of the carcinogens, the metabolic capacity of the target tissue or cell, the specificity and extent of DNA damage, the capacity to repair the damage, the accuracy of DNA polymerases, and cell turnover rate. The mutagenic and carcinogenic effects of the nitroso compounds have been associated with the formation in the DNA of O6-alkylguanine (4–8), which is one of 12 DNA modifications induced by these alkylating agents (9,10). This chemically stable product is removed from DNA by the transfer of the alkyl group from the O6 position of guanine to a receptor protein (11). Other DNA adducts, like 3-alkyladenine and 7-alkylguanine, are removed by specific N-glycosylases (12).


Alkylating Agent Partial Hepatectomy Carcinogenic Effect Syrian Golden Hamster Nitroso Compound 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Montesano
    • 1
  • H. Bresil
    • 1
  • G. Planche-Martel
    • 1
  • A. E. Pegg
    • 2
  • G. Margison
    • 3
  1. 1.International Agency for Research on CancerLyonsFrance
  2. 2.Milton Hershey Medical CenterPennsylvania State UniversityHersheyUSA
  3. 3.Paterson LaboratoriesChristie Hospital and Holt Radium InstituteManchesterGreat Britain

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