Glucuronidation and Methylation of Procyanidin Dimers B2 and 3,3″-Di-O-Galloyl-B2 and Corresponding Monomers Epicatechin and 3-O-Galloyl-Epicatechin in Mouse Liver

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Abstract

Purpose

The 3,3″-di-O-galloyl ester of procyanidin B2 (B2G2) is a component of grape seed extract that inhibits growth of human prostate carcinoma cell lines. In preparation for studies in mice, its hepatic metabolism was examined in vitro and compared to B2 and the corresponding monomers, epicatechin (EC) and 3-O-galloyl-epicatechin (ECG).

Methods

Compounds were incubated with liver microsomes or cytosol containing cofactors for glucuronidation, sulfation or methylation, and products analyzed by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS). B2G2 was administered orally to mice and plasma analyzed by LC-MS for unmodified procyanidin and metabolites.

Results

Glucuronides and methyl ethers of B2 and B2G2 were formed in small amounts. In contrast, EC and ECG were largely or completely converted to glucuronides, sulfates and methyl ethers under the same incubation conditions. B2G2 given orally to mice was partially absorbed intact; no significant metabolites were detected in plasma.

Conclusions

Glucuronidation and methylation of procyanidins B2 and B2G2 occurred but were minor processes in vitro. B2G2 was partially absorbed intact in mice after oral dosing and did not undergo significant metabolism. Unlike the flavanol monomers EC and ECG, therefore, B2G2 bioavailability should not be limited by metabolism. These results paved the way for ongoing pharmacokinetic and efficacy studies.

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