Aminoflavone (AF) is entering clinical trials. We recently reported that AF induces DNA-protein cross-links (DPC) and γ-H2AX in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. To elucidate the mechanism of action of AF and provide biomarkers indicative of AF activity, we correlated AF activity profile (GI50) with gene expression patterns in the NCI-60 cell lines. Sulfotransferases (SULT) showed the highest positive correlation coefficients among ∼ 14,000 probe sets analyzed (r = 0.537, P < 0.001). Stable transfection of SULT1A1 into AF-resistant MDA-MB-231 cells sensitized these cells to AF. AF produced DPCs, γ-H2AX foci, and S-phase arrest in the SULT1A1-transfected but not in the parent MDA-MB-231 cells. Conversely, cells in which SULT1A1 was knocked down by small interfering RNA failed to induce γ-H2AX. Inhibition of SULTs and cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes by natural flavonoids blocked the antiproliferative activity of AF and the formation of AF-DNA adducts. AF also induces SULT1A1 and CYP expression in MCF-7 cells, suggesting the existence of an aryl hydrocarbon receptor-mediated positive feedback for AF activation by CYP and SULT1A1. Metabolism studies showed that AF can be oxidized by CYP at two amino groups to form N-hydroxyl metabolites that are substrates for bioactivation by SULTs. We propose that both N-sulfoxy-groups can be further converted to nitrenium ions that form adducts with DNA and proteins. The results reported here show the importance of SULT1A1 and CYP for AF activation and anticancer activity. They also suggest using SULT1A1 and γ-H2AX as biomarkers for prediction of AF activity during patient selection and monitoring of clinical trials.