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Drug Metab Dispos. 2013 Sep;41(9):1621-5. doi: 10.1124/dmd.113.052977. Epub 2013 Jun 19.

Characterization of microsomal glutathione S-transferases MGST1, MGST2, and MGST3 in cynomolgus macaque.

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Pharmacokinetics and Bioanalysis Center, Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, Ltd., Kainan, Japan.


The glutathione S-transferase (GST) family comprises cytosolic, mitochondrial, and microsomal GSTs, all essential enzymes that metabolize a wide range of endogenous and exogenous substrates. Among the microsomal GSTs (MGSTs) in humans, MGST1, MGST2, and MGST3 are involved in detoxification; however, MGSTs have not been fully investigated in cynomolgus macaque, an important primate species widely used in drug metabolism and toxicity studies. In the present study, cynomolgus MGST2 and MGST3 cDNAs were isolated from liver tissue and characterized along with previously isolated cynomolgus MGST1. For comparison with the cynomolgus cDNAs, MGST2 and MGST3 cDNAs were also isolated from rhesus macaque (closely related to cynomolgus macaque) liver. Cynomolgus MGST2 and MGST3, respectively, were highly identical (99 and 98%) to human MGST2 and MGST3 and nearly identical to the amino acid sequences of the rhesus orthologs, and they were closely clustered with human MGST2 and MGST3 by phylogenetic analysis. The analysis of genome data indicated that MGST1, MGST2, and MGST3, respectively, had similar gene structures and genomic organization in macaque and human. Therefore, cynomolgus MGSTs have molecular similarities to the corresponding human MGSTs. Cynomolgus MGST2 and MGST3 were expressed in liver, jejunum, and kidney, but at lower levels than MGST1. GST activities were measured with 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene and 1,2-epoxy-3-(p-nitrophenoxy)propane as substrates, using proteins heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli. Cynomolgus MGST1, MGST2, and MGST3 conjugated 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene and 1,2-epoxy-3-(p-nitrophenoxy)propane, indicating that cynomolgus MGST1, MGST2, and MGST3 are functional enzymes. These results suggest that these functional cynomolgus MGST enzymes and the corresponding human MGSTs are molecularly similar.

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