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Environ Res. 2004 Mar;94(3):262-6.

Identification of cytochrome P450 isoforms involved in 1-hydroxylation of pyrene.

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Department of Environmental Health, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, 1-1 Iseigaoka, Yahatanishi-ku, Kitakyushu 807-8555, Japan.


Urinary 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP) has been used as a biomarker for environmental polyaromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) exposure. However, it is known that there is an interindividual variability in metabolism of pyrene to 1-OHP depending on the activities of the metabolizing enzymes, especially cytochrome P450s (CYPs). In this study, we investigated the 1-hydroxylation of pyrene by 10 forms of cDNA-expressed human P450s in order to identify the principal isoforms of P450s that are involved in the major metabolic pathway of pyrene. The pyrene 1-hydroxylation activity was found to be the highest in CYP1A1 at both 0.5 and 50microM of pyrene, followed by CYP1B1 and 1A2, whereas other enzymes, including CYP2A6, 2C8, 2C9*1, 2C19, 2D6, 2E1, 3A4, and control microsomes, showed very low or undetectable rates of 1-hydroxylation. In conclusion, CYP1A1, 1B1, and 1A2 are major metabolizing enzymes in 1-hydroxylation of pyrene in vitro. This suggests that the individual difference of these enzymes must be included in epidemiological studies to evaluate PAH exposure using urinary 1-OHP.

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