Author(s): Harvey W, Scutt A, Meghji S, Canniff JP
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Oral submucous fibrosis (OSF) is characterized by excessive collagen production by mucosal fibroblasts and is associated with the habitual chewing of betel-nuts (Areca catechu); nut extracts stimulate fibroblast activity in vitro. The metabolism of arecoline, the major alkaloid in the nut, by human buccal mucosa fibroblasts in vitro was investigated; alkaloid metabolites extracted from culture media were analysed by gas chromatography and thin-layer chromatography. [3H]-arecoline was metabolized predominantly to [3H]-arecaidine and this was accompanied by a concentration-dependent stimulation of collagen synthesis and cell proliferation. Arecaidine was a more potent stimulator than arecoline. The rate of hydrolysis of a series of synthetic arecaidine esters (methyl, ethyl, butyl, propyl and pentyl) by fibroblasts was closely correlated with the extent of stimulation of collagen synthesis. Thus fibroblasts are responsive to the major metabolite of arecoline and hydrolysis of the ester group may be necessary for this action. Exposure of buccal mucosa fibroblasts to these alkaloids in vivo may contribute to the accumulation of collagen in OSF.
This article was published in Arch Oral Biol
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy