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    The multispecific organic anion transporters, OAT1 (SLC22A6) and OAT3 (SLC22A8), the main kidney elimination pathways for many common drugs, are often considered to have largely-redundant roles. However, whereas examination of metabolomics data from Oat-knockout mice (Oat1 and Oat3KO) revealed considerable overlap, over a hundred metabolites were increased in the plasma of one or the other of these knockout mice. Many of these relatively unique metabolites are components of distinct biochemical and signaling pathways, including those involving amino acids, lipids, bile acids, and uremic toxins. Cheminformatics, together with a "logical" statistical and machine learning-based approach, identified a number of molecular features distinguishing these unique endogenous substrates. Compared with OAT1, OAT3 tends to interact with more complex substrates possessing more rings and chiral centers. An independent "brute force" approach, analyzing all possible combinations of molecular features, supported the logical approach. Together, the results suggest the potential molecular basis by which OAT1 and OAT3 modulate distinct metabolic and signaling pathways in vivo As suggested by the Remote Sensing and Signaling Theory, the analysis provides a potential mechanism by which "multispecific" kidney proximal tubule transporters exert distinct physiological effects. Furthermore, a strong metabolite-based machine-learning classifier was able to successfully predict unique OAT1 versus OAT3 drugs; this suggests the feasibility of drug design based on knockout metabolomics of drug transporters. The approach can be applied to other SLC and ATP-binding cassette drug transporters to define their nonredundant physiological roles and for analyzing the potential impact of drug-metabolite interactions. © 2020 Nigam et al.


    Anisha K Nigam, Julia G Li, Kaustubh Lall, Da Shi, Kevin T Bush, Vibha Bhatnagar, Ruben Abagyan, Sanjay K Nigam. Unique metabolite preferences of the drug transporters OAT1 and OAT3 analyzed by machine learning. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2020 Feb 14;295(7):1829-1842

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    PMID: 31896576

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