Gene polymorphisms and contents of cytochrome P450s have only limited effects on metabolic activities in human liver microsomes

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Extensive inter-individual variations in pharmacokinetics are considered as a major reason for unpredictable drug responses. As the most important drug metabolic enzymes, inter-individual variations of cytochrome P450 (CYP) activities are not clear in human liver. In this paper, metabolic activities, gene polymorphisms and protein contents of 10 CYPs were determined in 105 human normal liver microsomes. The results indicated substantial inter-individual variations in CYP activities, with the greatest being CYP2C19 activity (> 600-fold). Only half of 10 CYP isoforms and 26 gene polymorphism sites had limited effects on metabolic activities, such as CYP2A6, CYP2B6, CYP2C9, CYP2D6 and CYP3A4/5, others had almost no effects. Compared with their respective wild type, Km, Vmax, and CLint decreased by 51.6%, 88.7% and 70.7% in CYP2A6*1/*4 genotype, Vmax and CLint decreased by 32.8% and 60.2% in CYP2C9*1/*3 genotype, Km increased by 118.4% and CLint decreased by 65.2% in CYP2D6 100TT genotype, respectively. Moreover, there were only 4 CYP isoforms, CYP1A2, CYP2A6, CYP2E1 and CYP3A5, which had moderate or weak correlations between Vmax values and corresponding contents. In conclusions, the genotypes and contents of some CYPs have only limited effects on metabolic activities, which imply that there are other more important factors to influence inter-individual variations.

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