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Event: 36

Key Event Title

A descriptive phrase which defines a discrete biological change that can be measured. More help

Inhibition, Aromatase

Short name
The KE short name should be a reasonable abbreviation of the KE title and is used in labelling this object throughout the AOP-Wiki. More help
Inhibition, Aromatase
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Biological Context

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Level of Biological Organization
Molecular

Cell term

The location/biological environment in which the event takes place.The biological context describes the location/biological environment in which the event takes place.  For molecular/cellular events this would include the cellular context (if known), organ context, and species/life stage/sex for which the event is relevant. For tissue/organ events cellular context is not applicable.  For individual/population events, the organ context is not applicable.  Further information on Event Components and Biological Context may be viewed on the attached pdf. More help
Cell term
granulosa cell

Organ term

The location/biological environment in which the event takes place.The biological context describes the location/biological environment in which the event takes place.  For molecular/cellular events this would include the cellular context (if known), organ context, and species/life stage/sex for which the event is relevant. For tissue/organ events cellular context is not applicable.  For individual/population events, the organ context is not applicable.  Further information on Event Components and Biological Context may be viewed on the attached pdf. More help
Organ term
ovary growing follicle

Key Event Components

The KE, as defined by a set structured ontology terms consisting of a biological process, object, and action with each term originating from one of 14 biological ontologies (Ives, et al., 2017; https://aopwiki.org/info_pages/2/info_linked_pages/7#List). Biological process describes dynamics of the underlying biological system (e.g., receptor signalling).Biological process describes dynamics of the underlying biological system (e.g., receptor signaling).  The biological object is the subject of the perturbation (e.g., a specific biological receptor that is activated or inhibited). Action represents the direction of perturbation of this system (generally increased or decreased; e.g., ‘decreased’ in the case of a receptor that is inhibited to indicate a decrease in the signaling by that receptor).  Note that when editing Event Components, clicking an existing Event Component from the Suggestions menu will autopopulate these fields, along with their source ID and description.  To clear any fields before submitting the event component, use the 'Clear process,' 'Clear object,' or 'Clear action' buttons.  If a desired term does not exist, a new term request may be made via Term Requests.  Event components may not be edited; to edit an event component, remove the existing event component and create a new one using the terms that you wish to add.  Further information on Event Components and Biological Context may be viewed on the attached pdf. More help
Process Object Action
aromatase activity aromatase decreased

Key Event Overview

AOPs Including This Key Event

All of the AOPs that are linked to this KE will automatically be listed in this subsection. This table can be particularly useful for derivation of AOP networks including the KE. Clicking on the name of the AOP will bring you to the individual page for that AOP. More help
AOP Name Role of event in AOP Point of Contact Author Status OECD Status
Aromatase inhibition leading to reproductive dysfunction MolecularInitiatingEvent Cataia Ives (send email) Open for citation & comment WPHA/WNT Endorsed
Aromatase inhibition leads to male-biased sex ratio via impacts on gonad differentiation MolecularInitiatingEvent Brendan Ferreri-Hanberry (send email) Under Development: Contributions and Comments Welcome

Taxonomic Applicability

Latin or common names of a species or broader taxonomic grouping (e.g., class, order, family) that help to define the biological applicability domain of the KE.In many cases, individual species identified in these structured fields will be those for which the strongest evidence used in constructing the AOP was available in relation to this KE. More help
Term Scientific Term Evidence Link
Vertebrates Vertebrates Moderate NCBI

Life Stages

An indication of the the relevant life stage(s) for this KE. More help
Life stage Evidence
All life stages

Sex Applicability

An indication of the the relevant sex for this KE. More help
Term Evidence
Unspecific

Key Event Description

A description of the biological state being observed or measured, the biological compartment in which it is measured, and its general role in the biology should be provided. More help

Inhibition of cytochrome P450 aromatase (CYP19; specifically cyp19a1a in fish).

Site of action: The site of action for the molecular initiating event is the ovarian granulosa cells.

While many vertebrates have a single isoform of aromatase, fish are known to have two isoforms. CYP19a1a is predominantly expressed in ovary while cyp19a1b is predominantly expressed in brain (Callard et al. 2001; Cheshenko et al. 2008). For the purposes of this MIE, when applied to fish, the assumed effect is on cyp19a1a. However, given that both isoforms show similar sensitivity to aromatase inhibitors (Hinfray et al. 2006) and catalyze the same reaction, discrimination of specific isoforms is not viewed as critical in relative to determining downstream key events resulting from aromatase inhibition in ovarian granulosa cells.

Responses at the macromolecular level: Aromatase catalyzes three sequential oxidation steps (i.e., KEGG reactions R02501, R04761, R03087 or R01840, R04759, R02351; http://www.genome.jp/kegg/pathway.html) involved in the conversion of C-19 androgens (e.g., testosterone, androstenedione) to C-18 estrogens (e.g., 17β-estradiol, estrone). Aromatase inhibitors interfere with one or more of these reactions, leading to reduced efficiency in converting C-19 androgens into C-18 estrogens. Therefore, inhibition of aromatase activity results in decreased rate of 17β-estradiol (and presumably estrone) production by the ovary.

How It Is Measured or Detected

A description of the type(s) of measurements that can be employed to evaluate the KE and the relative level of scientific confidence in those measurements.These can range from citation of specific validated test guidelines, citation of specific methods published in the peer reviewed literature, or outlines of a general protocol or approach (e.g., a protein may be measured by ELISA). Do not provide detailed protocols. More help

Measurement/detection: Aromatase activity is typically measured by evaluating the production of tritiated water released upon the aromatase catalyzed conversion of radio-labeled androstenedione to estrone (Lephart and Simpson 1991). Aromatase activity can be measured in cell lines exposed in vitro (e.g., human placental JEG-3 cells and JAR choriocarcinoma cells, (Letcher et al. 1999); H295R human adrenocortical carcinoma cells (Sanderson et al. 2000)). Aromatase activity can also be quantified in tissue (i.e., ovary or brain) from vertebrates exposed in vivo (e.g., (Villeneuve et al. 2006; Ankley et al. 2002). In vitro aromatase assays are amenable to high throughput and have been included in nascent high throughput screening programs like the US EPA ToxcastTM program. Specific ToxCast assays indicative of potential aromatase inhibition include:

NVS_ADME_hCYP19A1

ERF_ENZ_hCYP19A1_dn

TOX21_Aromatase_Inhibition

Domain of Applicability

A description of the scientific basis for the indicated domains of applicability and the WoE calls (if provided).  More help

Taxonomic applicability: Aromatase (CYP19) orthologs are known to be present among most of the vertebrate lineage, at least down to the cartilaginous fishes. Orthologs have generally not been found in invertebrates, however, CYP19 was detected in the invertebrate chordate, amphioxus and analysis of conservation of gene order and content suggests a possible origin among primitive chordates (Castro et al. 2005).

Fishes generally have two aromatase isoforms, cyp19a1a which is predominantly expressed in ovary and cyp19b, predominantly expressed in brain (Callard et al. 2001). Given that cyp19a1a is dominant isoform expressed in ovary and both isoforms appear to show similar sensitivity to aromatase inhibitors (Hinfray et al., 2006), for the purpose of this key event which focuses on gonadal aromatase activty, distinction of effects on one isoform versus the other are considered negligible. Total activity, without regard to isoform can be considered.

Life stage applicability:  Aromatase activity can be measured at any life stage after the onset of endogenous steroid biosynthesis, generally shortly after birth or hatch.

Sex applicability:  Although expression and activity tends to be greater in females, aromatase activity can be measured in both male and female vertebrates. 

References

List of the literature that was cited for this KE description. More help
  • Petkov PI, Temelkov S, Villeneuve DL, Ankley GT, Mekenyan OG. 2009. Mechanism-based categorization of aromatase inhibitors: a potential discovery and screening tool. SAR QSAR Environ Res 20(7-8): 657-678.
  • Lephart ED, Simpson ER. 1991. Assay of aromatase activity. Methods Enzymol 206: 477-483.
  • Letcher RJ, van Holsteijn I, Drenth H-J, Norstrom RJ, Bergman A, Safe S, et al. 1999. Cytotoxicity and aromatase (CYP19) activity modulation by organochlorines in human placental JEG-3 and JAR choriocarcinoma cells. Toxico App Pharm 160: 10-20.
  • Sanderson J, Seinen W, Giesy J, van den Berg M. 2000. 2-chloro-triazine herbicides induce aromatase (CYP19) activity in H295R human adrenocortical carcinoma cells: a novel mechanism for estrogenicity. Toxicol Sci 54: 121-127.
  • Villeneuve DL, Knoebl I, Kahl MD, Jensen KM, Hammermeister DE, Greene KJ, et al. 2006. Relationship between brain and ovary aromatase activity and isoform-specific aromatase mRNA expression in the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas). Aquat Toxicol 76(3-4): 353-368.
  • Ankley GT, Kahl MD, Jensen KM, Hornung MW, Korte JJ, Makynen EA, et al. 2002. Evaluation of the aromatase inhibitor fadrozole in a short-term reproduction assay with the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas). Toxicol Sci 67: 121-130.
  • Castro LF, Santos MM, Reis-Henriques MA. 2005. The genomic environment around the Aromatase gene: evolutionary insights. BMC Evol Biol 5: 43.
  • Callard GV, Tchoudakova AV, Kishida M, Wood E. 2001. Differential tissue distribution, developmental programming, estrogen regulation and promoter characteristics of cyp19 genes in teleost fish. J Ster Biochem Mol Biol 79: 305-314.
  • Cheshenko K, Pakdel F, Segner H, Kah O, Eggen RI. Interference of endocrine disrupting chemicals with aromatase CYP19 expression or activity, and consequences for reproduction of teleost fish. Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2008 Jan 1;155(1):31-62.
  • Hinfray N, Porcher JM, Brion F. Inhibition of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) P450 aromatase activities in brain and ovarian microsomes by various environmental substances. Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol. 2006 Nov;144(3):252-62