Suspected estrogen modulators include industrial organic chemicals (i.e., xenoestrogens), and have been shown to consist of alkylphenols, bisphenols, biphenylols, and some hydroxy-substituted polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. The most prominent structural feature identified to be important for estrogenic activity is a polar group capable of donating hydrogen bonds (i.e., hydroxyl) on an aromatic system. The present study was undertaken to explore the estrogenic activity and acute toxicity of chemicals containing a weaker hydrogen bond donor group on aromatic systems, i.e., the amino substituent. There is a great deal of chemical similarity between aromatic amines (anilines) and aromatic alcohols (phenols). The chemicals chosen for the current study contained an amino-substituted benzene ring with hydrophobic constituents varying in size and shape. Thus, 37 substituted aromatic amines were assayed for estrogenic activity EC50 and acute toxicity LC50 using the Saccharomyces cerevisiae recombinant yeast assay. While the EC50 of 17-beta-estradiol occurs at the 10(-10) range, the aniline with the greatest activity had an EC50 of 10(-6) M. Thus, anilines, in general, are capable only of very weak estrogenic activity in this assay. A comparison of estrogenic potency between the present group of anilines and a set of previously tested analogous phenols indicated that anilines are consistently less estrogenic than phenols. A comparison of hazard indices (EC50/LC50) of these chemicals revealed that, for the vast majority of anilines, the EC50 and LC50 were in the same order of magnitude. More specifically, estrogenic activity of para-substituted alkylanilines increases with alkyl group size up to 5 carbons in length, after which the acute toxicity of the larger alkyl-substituents precluded the ability of the compound to induce the estrogenic response.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/terry_schultz/44/