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The transcription factors aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), constitutive androstane receptor (CAR), pregnane X receptor (PXR), peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα), and nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) regulate genes encoding drug-metabolizing enzymes and transporters in livers of mice after chemical activation. However, the specificity of their transcriptional regulation has not been determined systematically in vivo. The purpose of this study was to identify genes encoding drug-metabolizing enzymes and transporters altered by chemical activators in a transcription factor-dependent manner using wild-type and transcription factor-null mice. Chemical activators were administered intraperitoneally to mice once daily for 4 days. Livers were collected 24 h after the final dose, and total RNA was isolated for mRNA quantification of cytochromes P450, NAD(P)H quinone oxidoreductase 1 (Nqo1), aldehyde dehydrogenases (Aldhs), glutathione transferases (Gsts), sulfotransferases (Sults), UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (Ugts), organic anion-transporting polypeptides (Oatps), and multidrug resistance-associated proteins (Mrps). Pharmacological activation of each transcription factor leads to mRNA induction of drug metabolic and transport genes in livers of male and female wild-type mice, but no change in null mice: AhR (Cyp1a2, Nqo1, Aldh7a1, Ugt1a1, Ugt1a6, Ugt1a9, Ugt2b35, Sult5a1, Gstm3, and Mrp4), CAR (Cyp2b10, Aldh1a1, Aldh1a7, Ugt1a1, Ugt2b34, Sult1e1, Sult3a1, Sult5a1, Papps2, Gstt1, Gsta1, Gsta4, Gstm1-4, and Mrp2-4), PXR (Cyp3a11, Ugt1a1, Ugt1a5, Ugt1a9, Gsta1, Gstm1-m3, Oatp1a4, and Mrp3), PPARα (Cyp4a14, Aldh1a1, mGst3, Gstm4, and Mrp4), and Nrf2 (Nqo1, Aldh1a1, Gsta1, Gsta4, Gstm1-m4, mGst3, and Mrp3-4). Taken together, these data reveal transcription factor specificity and overlap in regulating hepatic drug disposition genes by chemical activators. Coordinated regulation of phase I, phase II, and transport genes by activators of transcription factors can have implications in development of pharmaceuticals as well as risk assessment of environmental contaminants.


Lauren M Aleksunes, Curtis D Klaassen. Coordinated regulation of hepatic phase I and II drug-metabolizing genes and transporters using AhR-, CAR-, PXR-, PPARα-, and Nrf2-null mice. Drug metabolism and disposition: the biological fate of chemicals. 2012 Jul;40(7):1366-79

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PMID: 22496397

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