Glucuronidation and its impact on the bioactivity of [6]-shogaol

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[6]-shogaol (6S) from ginger has been reported to have diverse bioactivities and can be widely metabolized in animals and humans; however, the impact of glucuronidation on its bioactivity is still largely unknown. This study investigates the glucuronidation of 6S and its effect on cell cytotoxicity and Nrf2-inducing activities of 6S.

Methods and results

The glucuronidated metabolite of 6S, 4-O-monoglucuronide 6S (6S-G), was synthesized and characterized for the first time. Glucuronidation of 6S in humans was studied using microsomes of the liver and intestine and recombinant UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGTs). The kinetics of 6S glucuronidation by human liver and intestinal microsomes followed the substrate inhibition kinetics model. The intrinsic glucuronidation clearance (CLint) of 6S in human liver microsomes was higher than that in human intestine microsomes. Among the recombinant UGTs examined, UGT1A1, 1A3, 1A6, 1A8, 1A10, 2B7, 2B15, and 2B17 exhibited glucuronidation activity toward 6S, with UGT2B7 being the most potent one. Compared with 6S, the glucuronidation of 6S largely eliminated its cell cytotoxicity against human colon cancer cell lines HT-116 and HT-29, and its Nrf2-inducing activity.


The findings from current study provide foundations for understanding the role of glucuronidation in biotransformation and biological activities of 6S.

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