Faculty Research 1970 - 1979

Questionable relation of aryl hydrocarbon hydroxylase to lung-cancer risk.

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Aged, Aryl-Hydrocarbon-Hydroxylases: bi, bl, me, Cells-Cultured, DNA, Enzyme-Induction, Female, Human, Lung-Neoplasms: en, et, ge, Lymphocytes: en, me, Male, Middle-Age, Risk, SUPPORT-U-S-GOVT-P-H-S

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N Engl J Med 1977 Aug 18; 297(7):346-50.


To test whether the genetically determined trait, aryl hydrocarbon hydroxylase inducibility, affects susceptibility to lung cancer, we measured this trait in cultured lymphocytes from a normal population, patients with lung cancer and progeny of such patients. We found very low aryl hydrocarbon hydroxylase activity (19 per cent of normal) in about half the patients with lung cancer. Only part of this activity can be accounted for by reduced cell growth and by reduced protein synthesis. In an indirect assessment of inducibility, both 57 progeny and 27 matched controls had a mean inducibility of 2.95 and a similar distribution into low, intermediate and high groups (chi-square = 0.3 P = 0.9). No differences in basal or induced activity were observed. Thus, if patients with lung cancer possess altered aryl hydrocarbon hydroxylase inducibility or activity these characteristics are not transmitted to their progeny.

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