A Chromatographic Screening Method to Identify Agents that Reverse Intrinsic Drug Resistance in Colon Cancer Cells
Conjugation catalysed by the UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT) superfamily of drug-metabolizing enzymes is an important mechanism of anticancer drug resistance in colon cancer cells. The mechanism manifests itself by a reduction in the intracellular concentrations of the parent drug through increased export of the glucuronide metabolites to the extracellular compartment. Modulation by an inhibitor of UGT inhibits the formation of metabolites and restores intracellular concentrations of the drug. This article describes a screening method using HT29 human colon cancer cells and based on HPLC methodology that allows the identification of effective modulators of the glucuronidation mechanism of drug resistance. A rapid solid-phase sample preparation technique using C2-bonded 40 ?m silica particles was developed for the extraction of cell lysates and culture media without degradation of unstable parent compounds and their glucuronides or artefactual in situ formation of metabolites.