Inhibition of the in Vivo Conversion of Androstenedione to Estrone by the Aromatase Inhibitor Vorozole in Healthy Postmenopausal Women

Elsken Van der Wall, Truus H. Donker, Edwin De Frankrijker, Hans W.R. Nortier, Jos H.H. Thijssen, Marinus A. Blankenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Vorozole is a new, potent, and highly selective nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitor, which in animal and human studies was found to be about 1000-fold more potent than aminoglutethimide. Almost all aromatase-inhibiting activity resides in the dextro-enantiomer currently undergoing clinical trials. A marked decrease in circulating estrogens was found in several studies of healthy premenopausal women and male volunteers treated with the racemate, referred to as vorozole racemate. To further evaluate the aromatase-inhibiting potency of this drug, the in vivo conversion of androstenedione to estrone was studied in 12 healthy postmenopausal women. Four h after a single oral dose of vorozole race-mate, [14C] androstenedione and [3H] estrone were infused at a constant rate for 2 h. Women were randomized to receive vorozole racemate orally in one of three different doses, i.e., 1, 2.5, and 5 mg, in a double-blind protocol. Each woman acted as her own control in an identical experiment with a placebo carried out 2-4 weeks either before or after the test with vorozole racemate. In the urine, collected for 4 days after each experiment, estrogens were extracted and purified until a constant 3H/14C ratio of estrone was achieved. The percentage conversion of androstenedione to estrone in the 12 placebo experiments was 2.19 0.60% (mean SD, n = 12). Following a single administration of vorozole racemate, the conversion decreased to 0.14 0.04%. The percentage inhibition was 93.0 2.5 (= 4) following administration of 1 mg vorozole racemate; administration of 2.5 or 5 mg resulted in an inhibition percentage of 93.2 1.6 or 94.4 1.2, respectively. It is concluded that a single oral dose of 1-5 mg vorozole racemate results in an almost complete inhibition of in vivo aromatase activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4563-4566
Number of pages4
JournalCancer Research
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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