Triazenes dacarbazine

The chemotherapeutic effect of alkylating agents is attributed to their highly reactive alkyl groups, which form covalent bonds with nucleophilic groups found on proteins and nucleic acids.4 The alkylating agents by nature are strong electrophiles (electron acceptors), which react quickly with nucleophiles (electron donors)

found on DNA bases, such as phosphate, amino, sulfhydryl, hydroxyl, carboxyl, and imidazole groups. Ultimately, these bonds result in cross-linking of DNA base pairs, either between two strands of DNA or within the same strand. This cross-linking prevents the DNA strand from unwinding properly for replication, ultimately leading to inhibition of DNA synthesis and cell death.4 5 It is thought that apoptosis is stimulated by p53 pathways in response to this DNA damage. Alkylating agents can affect cells at any point in the cell cycle (cell-cycle nonspecific), but rapidly dividing cells experience the strongest insult.

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