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Heterotropic Cooperativity in Oxidation Mediated by Cytochrome P450

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Cytochrome P450s (P450 or CYPs) comprise a superfamily of enzymes that catalyze the oxidation of a wide variety of xenobiotic chemicals. Although most of P450 inhibitors decrease the metabolic activities mediated by the corresponding P450 forms, unexpected phenomena, which are called as activation or heterotropic cooperativity, have been often observed. We summarize Michaelis-Menten constants (Km), maximal velocities (Vmax), Vmax/Km (intrinsic clearance) values, and/or metabolic activities for 22 activators and 24 substrates (30 reactions) mainly mediated by CYP3A4 among human P450 forms. Although an allosteric mechanism has been invoked to explain the cooperativity, the activation patterns or phenomena are dependent on substrates and selected enzyme sources in vitro. Interestingly, recent studies have been shown that human P450 forms other than CYP3A4, such as CYP1A2, CYP2C8, CYP2C9, CYP2D6, and CYP3A7, are also activated by some compounds, whereas there are few reports on CYP3A5. Several models describing interaction among substrates, effectors, and enzymes have been proposed, however, the detailed mechanism for the activation is still generally unknown even though some crystal structures have been shown. A few cases of the cooperativity of CYP3A in experimental animals have been presented, whereas the clinical significance of P450 cooperativity is still unclear. The collective findings provide fundamental and useful information for the activation of P450s by chemicals despite some contradictive kinetic parameters for the same reactions reported. To understand causal factor( s) and mechanism(s) for such different reports summarized here is still one of the hot research topics to be solved in current activation reactions.

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Keywords: CYP3A4; activation; cooperativity; cytochrome P450; metabolic activity

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2008

More about this publication?
  • Current Drug Metabolism aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments in drug metabolism and disposition. The journal serves as an international forum for the publication of timely reviews in drug metabolism. Current Drug Metabolism is an essential journal for academic, clinical, government and pharmaceutical scientists who wish to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments. The journal covers the following areas:

    In vitro systems including CYP-450; enzyme induction and inhibition; drug-drug interactions and enzyme kinetics; pharmacokinetics, toxicokinetics, species scaling and extrapolations; P-glycoprotein and transport carriers; target organ toxicity and interindividual variability; drug metabolism and disposition studies; extrahepatic metabolism; phase I and phase II metabolism; recent developments for the identification of drug metabolites and adducts.
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