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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2011

In Vitro Cytochrome P450 2E1 and 2A Activities in the Presence of Testicular Steroids

Rasmussen, Martin; Zamaratskaia, Galia; Ekstrand, Bo


Cytochrome P450 2E1 (CYP2E1) and 2A (CYP2A) are the main enzymes involved in the metabolism of skatole in pigs. In this study, physiological concentrations of androstenone, 17 beta-oestradiol and testosterone were tested for their ability to regulate CYP2E1 and CYP2A activity in liver microsomes isolated from entire male and female pigs as well as in microsomes from Saccharomyces cerevisiae expressing either human recombinant CYP2E1 or CYP2A6. We found that physiological concentrations of androstenone and oestradiol had the ability to inhibit CYP2E1 activity. The magnitude of this inhibition (approximately 30%) was similar in recombinant human CYP2E1 and microsomes from entire male pigs. This inhibition was only seen when adding the steroid to the assay 15 min before the substrate. Interestingly, CYP2E1 activity in the microsomes from female pigs was not affected. None of the investigated steroids modified the activity of recombinant human CYP2A6. However, CYP2A activity was slightly increased in the microsomes from female pigs in the presence of oestradiol, but the magnitude of this increase was very low (below 10%) and probably irrelevant. Overall, these results indicate that physiological concentrations of androstenone and oestradiol have a potential to inhibit CYP2E1 activities in vitro, and that this inhibition is gender-specific. Further studies are needed to investigate the biochemical mechanisms underlying those differences between the genders.

Published in

Reproduction in Domestic Animals
2011, Volume: 46, number: 1, pages: 149-154

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    Veterinary Science
    Animal and Dairy Science

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