Induction of short-term markers of tumor promotion by organic peroxides

Irma Gimenez-conti, Aurora Viaje, Judith Chesner, Claudio Conti, Thomas J. Slaga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Experiments from different laboratories have shown that benzoyl peroxide (BzPo) and other organic peroxides are effective tumor promoters in the mouse skin two-stage carcinogenesis system. In the present paper we have studied the short-term effect of six other organic peroxides, which have not been previously assayed as skin tumor promoters. These compounds were chosen for their molecular diversity, the type of radical predicted to be formed, solubility and availability. The parameters evaluated in this study include a series of short-term markers of tumor promotion, hyperplasia, induction of dark basal keratinocytes and induction of ornithine decarboxylase activity. After single applications the biological activity of the compounds was: m-chloroperoxybenzoic acid > dl-m-methylbenzoyl peroxide > dlcumyl peroxide > O,O-t-butyl-O-(2-ethylhexyl)monoperoxycarbonate > benzoyl peroxide > di-m-chlorobenzoyl peroxide > di-t-butyl peroxide > t-butyl hydroperoxide. After multiple applications, the order of activity of the compounds was: dicumyl peroxide > di-m-methyl benzoyl peroxide > O,O-t-butyl-O-(2-ethylhexyl)monoperoxy carbonate > di-m-chloroperoxybenzoic acid > dl-m-chloro benzoyl peroxide > t-butyl hydroperoxide > benzoyl peroxide > di-t-butyl peroxide. The difference of activity among the different compounds did not seem to correlate directly with the chemical stability of the compound; it is more likely that the activity depends on different factors such as percutaneous absorption, metabolism, and the rate of free radical formation in vivo. The data presented here further support the association between free radicals and tumor promotion since all of the compounds, with the exception of one, were active in inducing the short-term markers of tumor promotion. It will also establish conditions for future tumor experiments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-569
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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