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Chem Res Toxicol. 2001 Aug;14(8):1051-7.

Human monomethylarsonic acid (MMA(V)) reductase is a member of the glutathione-S-transferase superfamily.

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Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Center of Toxicology, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA.


The drinking of water containing large amounts of inorganic arsenic is a worldwide major public health problem because of arsenic carcinogenicity. Yet an understanding of the specific mechanism(s) of inorganic arsenic toxicity has been elusive. We have now partially purified the rate-limiting enzyme of inorganic arsenic metabolism, human liver MMA(V) reductase, using ion exchange, molecular exclusion, and hydroxyapatite chromatography. When SDS-beta-mercaptoethanol-PAGE was performed on the most purified fraction, seven protein bands were obtained. Each band was excised from the gel, sequenced by LC-MS/MS and identified according to the SWISS-PROT and TrEMBL Protein Sequence databases. Human liver MMA(V) reductase is 100% identical, over 92% of sequence that we analyzed, with the recently discovered human glutathione-S-transferase Omega class hGSTO 1-1. Recombinant human GSTO1-1 had MMA(V) reductase activity with K(m) and V(max) values comparable to those of human liver MMA(V) reductase. The partially purified human liver MMA(V) reductase had glutathione S-transferase (GST) activity. MMA(V) reductase activity was competitively inhibited by the GST substrate, 1-chloro 2,4-dinitrobenzene and also by the GST inhibitor, deoxycholate. Western blot analysis of the most purified human liver MMA(V) reductase showed one band when probed with hGSTO1-1 antiserum. We propose that MMA(V) reductase and hGSTO 1-1 are identical proteins.

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