The metabolism and toxicity of bromobenzene has been investigated for well over one hundred years. The urinary excretion of mercapturic acids was first reported in 1879, in animals treated with bromobenzene. Bromobenzene has since proven to be a valuable tool in efforts to unravel the complexities involved in chemical- induced toxicities. For example, the importance of metabolic activation via the cytochrome(s) P-450; the role of glutathione in the detoxification of reactive metabolites; and the toxicological significance of covalent binding, enzyme inactivation and lipid peroxidation have all been illustrated in studies with bromobenzene. Thus, many of the principles involved in chemical-induced toxicity have been exemplified in studies with bromobenzene. These studies have provided substantial insight into the role of chemically reactive metabolites in the genesis of xenobiotic-mediated cytotoxicity.
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