Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Drug Metab Dispos. 1998 Aug;26(8):818-21.

Human buprenorphine N-dealkylation is catalyzed by cytochrome P450 3A4.

Author information

Department of Clinical Pharmacy, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Showa University, Tokyo, Japan.


Buprenorphine (BN) is a thebaine derivative with analgesic properties. To identify and characterize the cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzyme(s) involved in BN N-dealkylation, in vitro studies using human liver microsomes and recombinant human CYP enzymes were performed. Norbuprenorphine formation from BN was measured by a simple HPLC-UV assay method, without extraction. The BN N-dealkylation activities in 10 human liver microsomal preparations were strongly correlated with microsomal CYP3A-specific metabolic reactions, i.e. triazolam 1'-hydroxylation (r = 0.954), midazolam 1'-hydroxylation (r = 0.928), and testosterone 6beta-hydroxylation (r = 0.897). Among the eight recombinant CYP enzymes studied (CYP1A2, CYP2A6, CYP2B6, CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, CYP2E1, and CYP3A4), only CYP3A4 could catalyze BN N-dealkylation. The apparent KM value for recombinant CYP3A4 was similar to that for human liver microsomes (23.7 vs. 39.3 +/- 9.2 microM). The demonstration of BN N-dealkylation by recombinant CYP3A4 and the agreement in the affinities (apparent KM values) of human liver microsomes and recombinant CYP3A4 provide the most supportive evidence for BN N-dealkylation being catalyzed by CYP3A4.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center