Definition / meaning of 5-fluoro-2-deoxycytidine

A fluorinated pyrimidine analogue antimetabolite with potential antineoplastic activity. As a prodrug, 5-fluoro-2-deoxycytidine is converted by intracellular deaminases to the cytotoxic agent 5-fluorouracil (5-FU). 5-FU is subsequently metabolized to active metabolites including 5-fluoro-2-deoxyuridine monophosphate (FdUMP) and 5-fluorouridine triphosphate (FUTP). FdUMP binds to and inhibits thymidylate synthase, thereby reducing the production of thymidine monophosphate, which leads to depletion of thymidine triphosphate and the inhibition of DNA synthesis and cell division. FUTP competes with uridine triphosphate (UTP) for incorporation into the RNA strand, which results in the inhibition of RNA and protein synthesis and cell proliferation. Other fluorouracil metabolites also get incorporated into both DNA and RNA, with further inhibition of cellular growth.

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The Web site of the National Cancer Institute (http://www.cancer.gov/drugdiction)

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