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Pharmacol Ther. 2013 May;138(2):229-54. doi: 10.1016/j.pharmthera.2013.01.010. Epub 2013 Jan 24.

NADPH P450 oxidoreductase: structure, function, and pathology of diseases.

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Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology, University Children's Hospital Bern, and Department of Clinical Research, University of Bern, 3004 Bern, Switzerland.


Cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (POR) is an enzyme that is essential for multiple metabolic processes, chiefly among them are reactions catalyzed by cytochrome P450 proteins for metabolism of steroid hormones, drugs and xenobiotics. Mutations in POR cause a complex set of disorders that often resemble defects in steroid metabolizing enzymes 17α-hydroxylase, 21-hydroxylase and aromatase. Since our initial reports of POR mutations in 2004, more than 200 different mutations and polymorphisms in POR gene have been identified. Several missense variations in POR have been tested for their effect on activities of multiple steroid and drug metabolizing P450 proteins. Mutations in POR may have variable effects on different P450 partner proteins depending on the location of the mutation. The POR mutations that disrupt the binding of co-factors have negative impact on all partner proteins, while mutations causing subtle structural changes may lead to altered interaction with specific partner proteins and the overall effect may be different for each partner. This review summarizes the recent discoveries related to mutations and polymorphisms in POR and discusses these mutations in the context of historical developments in the discovery and characterization of POR as an electron transfer protein. The review is focused on the structural, enzymatic and clinical implications of the mutations linked to newly identified disorders in humans, now categorized as POR deficiency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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