N-(4-Hydroxyphenyl)-retinamide (4-HPR; Fenretinide) is a synthetic retinoid which is undergoing investigation as a cancer chemopreventive agent. However, 4-HPR alters vitamin A kinetics and reduces the concentration of plasma retinol. We have conducted studies to examine the effects of 4-HPR on the activity of the enzyme lecithin:retinol acyltransferase (LRAT). This enzyme is implicated in the absorption and storage of vitamin A and is regulated, in liver, by vitamin A nutritional status. To determine whether 4- HPR, like retinoic acid, is able to induce liver LRAT activity, vitamin A- deficient rats having negligible liver LRAT activity were treated with single doses of 4-HPR (0.02-2.5 mg) and liver homogenates were assayed for LRAT activity using 3H-retinol bound to the cellular-retinol binding protein, CRBP, as substrate. Treatment with 4-HPR resulted in a dose- and time- dependent increase in liver LRAT activity which reached a maximum at 24 h. The activity of LRAT assayed in vitro and of hepatic 3H-retinyl ester content determined after an in vivo pulse of 3H-retinol were highly correlated (r = 0.802, P < 0.0002). When vitamin A-sufficient rats were fed a 4-HPR-supplemented diet for 30 d, LRAT activity differed significantly from control values in the liver (P < 0.0001) but not the small intestines. Changes in hepatic retinol metabolism which favor the esterification of vitamin A may be related to the mechanism by which 4-HPR alters vitamin A kinetics in vivo.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Nutrition and Dietetics