ALDH2 mediates 5-nitrofuran activity in multiple species

Linna Zhou, Hironori Ishizaki, Michaela Spitzer, Kerrie L Taylor, Nicholas D Temperley, Stephen L Johnson, Paul Brear, Philippe Gautier, Zhiqiang Zeng, Amy Mitchell, Vikram Narayan, Ewan M McNeil, David W Melton, Terry K. Smith, Mike Tyers, Nicholas J Westwood, E Elizabeth Patton

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    25 Citations (Scopus)


    Understanding how drugs work in vivo is critical for drug design and for maximizing the potential of currently available drugs. 5-nitrofurans are a class of prodrugs widely used to treat bacterial and trypanosome infections, but despite relative specificity, 5-nitrofurans often cause serious toxic side effects in people. Here, we use yeast and zebrafish, as well as human in vitro systems, to assess the biological activity of 5-nitrofurans, and we identify a conserved interaction between aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) 2 and 5-nitrofurans across these species. In addition, we show that the activity of nifurtimox, a 5-nitrofuran anti-trypanosome prodrug, is dependent on zebrafish Aldh2 and is a substrate for human ALDH2. This study reveals a conserved and biologically relevant ALDH2-5-nitrofuran interaction that may have important implications for managing the toxicity of 5-nitrofuran treatment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)883-892
    Number of pages10
    JournalChemistry & Biology
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 27 Jul 2012


    Cite this

    Zhou, L., Ishizaki, H., Spitzer, M., Taylor, K. L., Temperley, N. D., Johnson, S. L., Brear, P., Gautier, P., Zeng, Z., Mitchell, A., Narayan, V., McNeil, E. M., Melton, D. W., Smith, T. K., Tyers, M., Westwood, N. J., & Patton, E. E. (2012). ALDH2 mediates 5-nitrofuran activity in multiple species. Chemistry & Biology, 19(7), 883-892.