Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a common RNA virus that causes hepatitis and liver cancer. Infection is treated with IFN-α and ribavirin, but this expensive and physically demanding therapy fails in half of patients. The genomic sequences of independent HCV isolates differ by approximately 10%, but the effects of this variation on the response to therapy are unknown. To address this question, we analyzed amino acid covariance within the full viral coding region of pretherapy HCV sequences from 94 participants in the Viral Resistance to Antiviral Therapy of Chronic Hepatitis C (Virahep-C) clinical study. Covarying positions were common and linked together into networks that differed by response to therapy. There were 3-fold more hydrophobic amino acid pairs in HCV from nonresponding patients, and these hydrophobic interactions were predicted to contribute to failure of therapy by stabilizing viral protein complexes. Using our analysis to detect patterns within the networks, we could predict the outcome of therapy with greater than 95% coverage and 100% accuracy, raising the possibility of a prognostic test to reduce therapeutic failures. Furthermore, the hub positions in the networks are attractive antiviral targets because of their genetic linkage with many other positions that we predict would suppress evolution of resistant variants. Finally, covariance network analysis could be applicable to any virus with sufficient genetic variation, including most human RNA viruses.
Rajeev Aurora, Maureen J. Donlin, Nathan A. Cannon, John E. Tavis
Eosinophils are multifunctional leukocytes that degrade and remodel tissue extracellular matrix through production of proteolytic enzymes, release of proinflammatory factors to initiate and propagate inflammatory responses, and direct activation of mucus secretion and smooth muscle cell constriction. Thus, eosinophils are central effector cells during allergic airway inflammation and an important clinical therapeutic target. Here we describe the use of an injectable MMP-targeted optical sensor that specifically and quantitatively resolves eosinophil activity in the lungs of mice with experimental allergic airway inflammation. Through the use of real-time molecular imaging methods, we report the visualization of eosinophil responses in vivo and at different scales. Eosinophil responses were seen at single-cell resolution in conducting airways using near-infrared fluorescence fiberoptic bronchoscopy, in lung parenchyma using intravital microscopy, and in the whole body using fluorescence-mediated molecular tomography. Using these real-time imaging methods, we confirmed the immunosuppressive effects of the glucocorticoid drug dexamethasone in the mouse model of allergic airway inflammation and identified a viridin-derived prodrug that potently inhibited the accumulation and enzyme activity of eosinophils in the lungs. The combination of sensitive enzyme-targeted sensors with noninvasive molecular imaging approaches permitted evaluation of airway inflammation severity and was used as a model to rapidly screen for new drug effects. Both fluorescence-mediated tomography and fiberoptic bronchoscopy techniques have the potential to be translated into the clinic.
Virna Cortez-Retamozo, Filip K. Swirski, Peter Waterman, Hushan Yuan, Jose Luiz Figueiredo, Andita P. Newton, Rabi Upadhyay, Claudio Vinegoni, Rainer Kohler, Joseph Blois, Adam Smith, Matthias Nahrendorf, Lee Josephson, Ralph Weissleder, Mikael J. Pittet
The pancreatic islets of Langerhans are highly vascularized micro-organs that play a key role in the regulation of blood glucose homeostasis. The specific arrangement of endocrine cell types in islets suggests a coupling between morphology and function within the islet. Here, we established a line-scanning confocal microscopy approach to examine the relationship between blood flow and islet cell type arrangement by real-time in vivo imaging of intra-islet blood flow in mice. These data were used to reconstruct the in vivo 3D architecture of the islet and time-resolved blood flow patterns throughout the islet vascular bed. The results revealed 2 predominant blood flow patterns in mouse islets: inner-to-outer, in which blood perfuses the core of β cells before the islet perimeter of non–β cells, and top-to-bottom, in which blood perfuses the islet from one side to the other regardless of cell type. Our approach included both millisecond temporal resolution and submicron spatial resolution, allowing for real-time imaging of islet blood flow within the living mouse, which has not to our knowledge been attainable by other methods.
Lara R. Nyman, K. Sam Wells, W. Steve Head, Michael McCaughey, Eric Ford, Marcela Brissova, David W. Piston, Alvin C. Powers
Emerging metabolomic tools have created the opportunity to establish metabolic signatures of myocardial injury. We applied a mass spectrometry–based metabolite profiling platform to 36 patients undergoing alcohol septal ablation treatment for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy, a human model of planned myocardial infarction (PMI). Serial blood samples were obtained before and at various intervals after PMI, with patients undergoing elective diagnostic coronary angiography and patients with spontaneous myocardial infarction (SMI) serving as negative and positive controls, respectively. We identified changes in circulating levels of metabolites participating in pyrimidine metabolism, the tricarboxylic acid cycle and its upstream contributors, and the pentose phosphate pathway. Alterations in levels of multiple metabolites were detected as early as 10 minutes after PMI in an initial derivation group and were validated in a second, independent group of PMI patients. A PMI-derived metabolic signature consisting of aconitic acid, hypoxanthine, trimethylamine N-oxide, and threonine differentiated patients with SMI from those undergoing diagnostic coronary angiography with high accuracy, and coronary sinus sampling distinguished cardiac-derived from peripheral metabolic changes. Our results identify a role for metabolic profiling in the early detection of myocardial injury and suggest that similar approaches may be used for detection or prediction of other disease states.
Gregory D. Lewis, Ru Wei, Emerson Liu, Elaine Yang, Xu Shi, Maryann Martinovic, Laurie Farrell, Aarti Asnani, Marcoli Cyrille, Arvind Ramanathan, Oded Shaham, Gabriel Berriz, Patricia A. Lowry, Igor F. Palacios, Murat Taşan, Frederick P. Roth, Jiangyong Min, Christian Baumgartner, Hasmik Keshishian, Terri Addona, Vamsi K. Mootha, Anthony Rosenzweig, Steven A. Carr, Michael A. Fifer, Marc S. Sabatine, Robert E. Gerszten
The pregnane X receptor (PXR) and the constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) are closely related orphan nuclear hormone receptors that play a critical role as xenobiotic sensors in mammals. Both receptors regulate the expression of genes involved in the biotransformation of chemicals in a ligand-dependent manner. As the ligand specificity of PXR and CAR have diverged between species, the prediction of in vivo PXR and CAR interactions with a drug are difficult to extrapolate from animals to humans. We report the development of what we believe are novel PXR- and CAR-humanized mice, generated using a knockin strategy, and Pxr- and Car-KO mice as well as a panel of mice including all possible combinations of these genetic alterations. The expression of human CAR and PXR was in the predicted tissues at physiological levels, and splice variants of both human receptors were expressed. The panel of mice will allow the dissection of the crosstalk between PXR and CAR in the response to different drugs. To demonstrate the utility of this panel of mice, we used the mice to show that the in vivo induction of Cyp3a11 and Cyp2b10 by phenobarbital was only mediated by CAR, although this compound is described as a PXR and CAR activator in vitro. This panel of mouse models is a useful tool to evaluate the roles of CAR and PXR in drug bioavailability, toxicity, and efficacy in humans.
Nico Scheer, Jillian Ross, Anja Rode, Branko Zevnik, Sandra Niehaves, Nicole Faust, C. Roland Wolf
Novel biomarkers, such as circulating (auto)antibody signatures, may improve early detection and treatment of ruptured atherosclerotic lesions and accompanying cardiovascular events, such as myocardial infarction. Using a phage-display library derived from cDNAs preferentially expressed in ruptured peripheral human atherosclerotic plaques, we performed serological antigen selection to isolate displayed cDNA products specifically interacting with antibodies in sera from patients with proven ruptured peripheral atherosclerotic lesions. Two cDNA products were subsequently evaluated on a validation series of patients with peripheral atherosclerotic lesions, healthy controls, and patients with coronary artery disease at different stages. Our biomarker set was able to discriminate between patients with peripheral ruptured lesions and patients with peripheral stable plaques with 100% specificity and 76% sensitivity. Furthermore, 93% of patients with an acute myocardial infarction (AMI) tested positive for our biomarkers, whereas all patients with stable angina pectoris tested negative. Moreover, 90% of AMI patients who initially tested negative for troponin T, for which a positive result is known to indicate myocardial infarction, tested positive for our biomarkers upon hospital admission. In conclusion, antibody profiling constitutes a promising approach for noninvasive diagnosis of atherosclerotic lesions, because a positive serum response against a set of 2 cDNA products showed a strong association with the presence of ruptured peripheral atherosclerotic lesions and myocardial infarction.
Kitty B.J.M. Cleutjens, Birgit C.G. Faber, Mat Rousch, Ruben van Doorn, Tilman M. Hackeng, Cornelis Vink, Piet Geusens, Hugo ten Cate, Johannes Waltenberger, Vadim Tchaikovski, Marc Lobbes, Veerle Somers, Anneke Sijbers, Darcey Black, Peter J.E.H.M. Kitslaar, Mat J.A.P. Daemen
HIV infiltrates the CNS soon after an individual has become infected with the virus, and can cause dementia and encephalitis in late-stage disease. Here, a global metabolomics approach was used to find and identify metabolites differentially regulated in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of rhesus macaques with SIV-induced CNS disease, as we hypothesized that this might provide biomarkers of virus-induced CNS damage. The screening platform used a non-targeted, mass-based metabolomics approach beginning with capillary reverse phase chromatography and electrospray ionization with accurate mass determination, followed by novel, nonlinear data alignment and online database screening to identify metabolites. CSF was compared before and after viral infection. Significant changes in the metabolome specific to SIV-induced encephalitis were observed. Metabolites that were increased during infection-induced encephalitis included carnitine, acyl-carnitines, fatty acids, and phospholipid molecules. The elevation in free fatty acids and lysophospholipids correlated with increased expression of specific phospholipases in the brains of animals with encephalitis. One of these, a phospholipase A2 isoenzyme, is capable of releasing a number of the fatty acids identified. It was expressed in different areas of the brain in conjunction with glial activation, rather than linked to regions of SIV infection and inflammation, indicating widespread alterations in infected brains. The identification of specific metabolites as well as mechanisms of their increase illustrates the potential of mass-based metabolomics to address problems in CNS biochemistry and neurovirology, as well as neurodegenerative diseases.
William R. Wikoff, Gurudutt Pendyala, Gary Siuzdak, Howard S. Fox
A priori knowledge of spatial and temporal changes in partial pressure of oxygen (oxygenation; pO2) in solid tumors, a key prognostic factor in cancer treatment outcome, could greatly improve treatment planning in radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Pulsed electron paramagnetic resonance imaging (EPRI) provides quantitative 3D maps of tissue pO2 in living objects. In this study, we implemented an EPRI set-up that could acquire pO2 maps in almost real time for 2D and in minutes for 3D. We also designed a combined EPRI and MRI system that enabled generation of pO2 maps with anatomic guidance. Using EPRI and an air/carbogen (95% O2 plus 5% CO2) breathing cycle, we visualized perfusion-limited hypoxia in murine tumors. The relationship between tumor blood perfusion and pO2 status was examined, and it was found that significant hypoxia existed even in regions that exhibited blood flow. In addition, high levels of lactate were identified even in normoxic tumor regions, suggesting the predominance of aerobic glycolysis in murine tumors. This report presents a rapid, noninvasive method to obtain quantitative maps of pO2 in tumors, reported with anatomy, with precision. In addition, this method may also be useful for studying the relationship between pO2 status and tumor-specific phenotypes such as aerobic glycolysis.
Shingo Matsumoto, Fuminori Hyodo, Sankaran Subramanian, Nallathamby Devasahayam, Jeeva Munasinghe, Emi Hyodo, Chandramouli Gadisetti, John A. Cook, James B. Mitchell, Murali C. Krishna
Vectors derived from adeno-associated virus (AAV) are promising for human gene therapy, including treatment for retinal blindness. One major limitation of AAVs as vectors is that AAV cargo capacity has been considered to be restricted to 4.7 kb. Here we demonstrate that vectors with an AAV5 capsid (i.e., rAAV2/5) incorporated up to 8.9 kb of genome more efficiently than 6 other serotypes tested, independent of the efficiency of the rAAV2/5 production process. Efficient packaging of the large murine Abca4 and human MYO7A and CEP290 genes, which are mutated in common blinding diseases, was obtained, suggesting that this packaging efficiency is independent of the specific sequence packaged. Expression of proteins of the appropriate size and function was observed following transduction with rAAV2/5 carrying large genes. Intraocular administration of rAAV2/5 encoding ABCA4 resulted in protein localization to rod outer segments and significant and stable morphological and functional improvement of the retina in Abca4–/– mice. This use of rAAV2/5 may be a promising therapeutic strategy for recessive Stargardt disease, the most common form of inherited macular degeneration. The possibility of packaging large genes in AAV greatly expands the therapeutic potential of this vector system.
Mariacarmela Allocca, Monica Doria, Marco Petrillo, Pasqualina Colella, Maria Garcia-Hoyos, Daniel Gibbs, So Ra Kim, Albert Maguire, Tonia S. Rex, Umberto Di Vicino, Luisa Cutillo, Janet R. Sparrow, David S. Williams, Jean Bennett, Alberto Auricchio
Somatic cell gene targeting combined with nuclear transfer cloning presents tremendous potential for the creation of new, large-animal models of human diseases. Mouse disease models often fail to reproduce human phenotypes, underscoring the need for the generation and study of alternative disease models. Mice deficient for CFTR have been poor models for cystic fibrosis (CF), lacking many aspects of human CF lung disease. In this study, we describe the production of a CFTR gene–deficient model in the domestic ferret using recombinant adeno-associated virus–mediated gene targeting in fibroblasts, followed by nuclear transfer cloning. As part of this approach, we developed a somatic cell rejuvenation protocol using serial nuclear transfer to produce live CFTR-deficient clones from senescent gene-targeted fibroblasts. We transferred 472 reconstructed embryos into 11 recipient jills and obtained 8 healthy male ferret clones heterozygous for a disruption in exon 10 of the CFTR gene. To our knowledge, this study represents the first description of genetically engineered ferrets and describes an approach that may be of substantial utility in modeling not only CF, but also other genetic diseases.
Xingshen Sun, Ziying Yan, Yaling Yi, Ziyi Li, Diana Lei, Christopher S. Rogers, Juan Chen, Yulong Zhang, Michael J. Welsh, Gregory H. Leno, John F. Engelhardt
Progress toward understanding the pathogenesis of cystic fibrosis (CF) and developing effective therapies has been hampered by lack of a relevant animal model. CF mice fail to develop the lung and pancreatic disease that cause most of the morbidity and mortality in patients with CF. Pigs may be better animals than mice in which to model human genetic diseases because their anatomy, biochemistry, physiology, size, and genetics are more similar to those of humans. However, to date, gene-targeted mammalian models of human genetic disease have not been reported for any species other than mice. Here we describe the first steps toward the generation of a pig model of CF. We used recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors to deliver genetic constructs targeting the CF transmembrane conductance receptor (CFTR) gene to pig fetal fibroblasts. We generated cells with the CFTR gene either disrupted or containing the most common CF-associated mutation (ΔF508). These cells were used as nuclear donors for somatic cell nuclear transfer to porcine oocytes. We thereby generated heterozygote male piglets with each mutation. These pigs should be of value in producing new models of CF. In addition, because gene-modified mice often fail to replicate human diseases, this approach could be used to generate models of other human genetic diseases in species other than mice.
Christopher S. Rogers, Yanhong Hao, Tatiana Rokhlina, Melissa Samuel, David A. Stoltz, Yuhong Li, Elena Petroff, Daniel W. Vermeer, Amanda C. Kabel, Ziying Yan, Lee Spate, David Wax, Clifton N. Murphy, August Rieke, Kristin Whitworth, Michael L. Linville, Scott W. Korte, John F. Engelhardt, Michael J. Welsh, Randall S. Prather
Human and murine cerebral malaria are associated with elevated levels of cytokines in the brain and adherence of platelets to the microvasculature. Here we demonstrated that the accumulation of platelets in the brain microvasculature can be detected with MRI, using what we believe to be a novel contrast agent, at a time when the pathology is undetectable by conventional MRI. Ligand-induced binding sites (LIBS) on activated platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa receptors were detected in the brains of malaria-infected mice 6 days after inoculation with Plasmodium berghei using microparticles of iron oxide (MPIOs) conjugated to a single-chain antibody specific for the LIBS (LIBS-MPIO). No binding of the LIBS-MPIO contrast agent was detected in uninfected animals. A combination of LIBS-MPIO MRI, confocal microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy revealed that the proinflammatory cytokine TNF-α, but not IL-1β or lymphotoxin-α (LT-α), induced adherence of platelets to cerebrovascular endothelium. Peak platelet adhesion was found 12 h after TNF-α injection and was readily detected with LIBS-MPIO contrast-enhanced MRI. Temporal studies revealed that the level of MPIO-induced contrast was proportional to the number of platelets bound. Thus, the LIBS-MPIO contrast agent enabled noninvasive detection of otherwise undetectable cerebral pathology by in vivo MRI before the appearance of clinical disease, highlighting the potential of targeted contrast agents for diagnostic, mechanistic, and therapeutic studies.
Constantin von zur Muhlen, Nicola R. Sibson, Karlheinz Peter, Sandra J. Campbell, Panop Wilainam, Georges E. Grau, Christoph Bode, Robin P. Choudhury, Daniel C. Anthony
Targeting kinases is central to drug-based cancer therapy but remains challenging because the drugs often lack specificity, which may cause toxic side effects. Modulating side effects is difficult because kinases are evolutionarily and hence structurally related. The lack of specificity of the anticancer drug imatinib enables it to be used to treat chronic myeloid leukemia, where its target is the Bcr-Abl kinase, as well as a proportion of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs), where its target is the C-Kit kinase. However, imatinib also has cardiotoxic effects traceable to its impact on the C-Abl kinase. Motivated by this finding, we made a modification to imatinib that hampers Bcr-Abl inhibition; refocuses the impact on the C-Kit kinase; and promotes inhibition of an additional target, JNK, a change that is required to reinforce prevention of cardiotoxicity. We established the molecular blueprint for target discrimination in vitro using spectrophotometric and colorimetric assays and through a phage-displayed kinase screening library. We demonstrated controlled inhibitory impact on C-Kit kinase in human cell lines and established the therapeutic impact of the engineered compound in a novel GIST mouse model, revealing a marked reduction of cardiotoxicity. These findings identify the reengineered imatinib as an agent to treat GISTs with curbed side effects and reveal a bottom-up approach to control drug specificity.
Ariel Fernández, Angela Sanguino, Zhenghong Peng, Eylem Ozturk, Jianping Chen, Alejandro Crespo, Sarah Wulf, Aleksander Shavrin, Chaoping Qin, Jianpeng Ma, Jonathan Trent, Yvonne Lin, Hee-Dong Han, Lingegowda S. Mangala, James A. Bankson, Juri Gelovani, Allen Samarel, William Bornmann, Anil K. Sood, Gabriel Lopez-Berestein
4-1BB is a major costimulatory receptor that promotes the survival and expansion of activated T cells. Administration of agonistic anti–4-1BB Abs has been previously shown to enhance tumor immunity in mice. Abs are cell-based products posing significant cost, manufacturing, and regulatory challenges. Aptamers are oligonucleotide-based ligands that exhibit specificity and avidity comparable to, or exceeding, that of Abs. To date, various aptamers have been shown to inhibit the function of their cognate target. Here, we have described the development of an aptamer that binds 4-1BB expressed on the surface of activated mouse T cells and shown that multivalent configurations of the aptamer costimulated T cell activation in vitro and mediated tumor rejection in mice. Because aptamers can be chemically synthesized, manufacturing and the regulatory approval process should be substantially simpler and less costly than for Abs. Agonistic aptamers could therefore represent a superior alternative to Abs for the therapeutic manipulation of the immune system.
James O. McNamara II, Despina Kolonias, Fernando Pastor, Robert S. Mittler, Lieping Chen, Paloma H. Giangrande, Bruce Sullenger, Eli Gilboa
The in vivo roles of the hundreds of mammalian G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs) are incompletely understood. To explore these roles, we generated mice expressing the S1 subunit of pertussis toxin, a known inhibitor of Gi/o signaling, under the control of the ROSA26 locus in a Cre recombinase–dependent manner (ROSA26PTX). Crossing ROSA26PTX mice to mice expressing Cre in pancreatic β cells produced offspring with constitutive hyperinsulinemia, increased insulin secretion in response to glucose, and resistance to diet-induced hyperglycemia. This phenotype underscored the known importance of Gi/o and hence of GPCRs for regulating insulin secretion. Accordingly, we quantified mRNA for each of the approximately 373 nonodorant GPCRs in mouse to identify receptors highly expressed in islets and examined the role of several. We report that 3-iodothyronamine, a thyroid hormone metabolite, could negatively and positively regulate insulin secretion via the Gi-coupled α2A-adrenergic receptor and the Gs-coupled receptor Taar1, respectively, and protease-activated receptor–2 could negatively regulate insulin secretion and may contribute to physiological regulation of glucose metabolism. The ROSA26PTX system used in this study represents a new genetic tool to achieve tissue-specific signaling pathway modulation in vivo that can be applied to investigate the role of Gi/o-coupled GPCRs in multiple cell types and processes.
Jean B. Regard, Hiroshi Kataoka, David A. Cano, Eric Camerer, Liya Yin, Yao-Wu Zheng, Thomas S. Scanlan, Matthias Hebrok, Shaun R. Coughlin
Peptide presentation is critical for immune recognition of pathogen-infected cells by CD8+ T lymphocytes. Although a limited number of immunodominant peptide epitopes are consistently observed in diseases such as HIV-1 infection, the relationship between immunodominance and antigen processing in humans is largely unknown. Here, we have demonstrated that endogenous processing and presentation of a human immunodominant HIV-1 epitope is more efficient than that of a subdominant epitope. Furthermore, we have shown that the regions flanking the immunodominant epitope constitute a portable motif that increases the production and antigenicity of otherwise subdominant epitopes. We used a novel in vitro degradation assay involving cytosolic extracts as well as endogenous intracellular processing assays to examine 2 well-characterized HIV-1 Gag overlapping epitopes presented by the same HLA class I allele, one of which is consistently immunodominant and the other subdominant in infected persons. The kinetics and products of degradation of HIV-1 Gag favored the production of peptides encompassing the immunodominant epitope and destruction of the subdominant one. Notably, cytosolic digestion experiments revealed flanking residues proximal to the immunodominant epitope that increased the production and antigenicity of otherwise subdominant epitopes. Furthermore, specific point mutations in these portable flanking sequences modulated the production and antigenicity of epitopes. Such portable epitope processing determinants provide what we believe is a novel approach to optimizing CTL responses elicited by vaccine vectors.
Sylvie Le Gall, Pamela Stamegna, Bruce D. Walker
Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease of unknown etiology, most commonly affecting the lungs. Activated CD4+ T cells accumulate in the lungs of individuals with sarcoidosis and are considered to be of central importance for inflammation. We have previously shown that Scandinavian sarcoidosis patients expressing the HLA-DR allele DRB1*0301 are characterized by large accumulations in the lungs of CD4+ T cells expressing the TCR AV2S3 gene segment. This association afforded us a unique opportunity to identify a sarcoidosis-specific antigen recognized by AV2S3+ T cells. To identify candidates for the postulated sarcoidosis-specific antigen, lung cells from 16 HLA-DRB1*0301pos patients were obtained by bronchoalveolar lavage. HLA-DR molecules were affinity purified and bound peptides acid eluted. Subsequently, peptides were separated by reversed-phase HPLC and analyzed by liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry. We identified 78 amino acid sequences from self proteins presented in the lungs of sarcoidosis patients, some of which were well-known autoantigens such as vimentin and ATP synthase. For the first time, to our knowledge, we have identified HLA-bound peptides presented in vivo during an inflammatory condition. This approach can be extended to characterize HLA-bound peptides in various autoimmune settings.
Jan Wahlström, Jörn Dengjel, Bengt Persson, Hüseyin Duyar, Hans-Georg Rammensee, Stefan Stevanović, Anders Eklund, Robert Weissert, Johan Grunewald
Cytochrome P450 3A (CYP3A) enzymes constitute an important detoxification system that contributes to primary metabolism of more than half of all prescribed medications. To investigate the physiological and pharmacological roles of CYP3A, we generated Cyp3a-knockout (Cyp3a–/–) mice lacking all functional Cyp3a genes. Cyp3a–/– mice were viable, fertile, and without marked physiological abnormalities. However, these mice exhibited severely impaired detoxification capacity when exposed to the chemotherapeutic agent docetaxel, displaying higher exposure levels in response to both oral and intravenous administration. These mice also demonstrated increased sensitivity to docetaxel toxicity, suggesting a primary role for Cyp3a in xenobiotic detoxification. To determine the relative importance of intestinal versus hepatic Cyp3a in first-pass metabolism, we generated transgenic Cyp3a–/– mice expressing human CYP3A4 in either the intestine or the liver. Expression of CYP3A4 in the intestine dramatically decreased absorption of docetaxel into the bloodstream, while hepatic expression aided systemic docetaxel clearance. These results suggest that CYP3A expression determines impairment of drug absorption and efficient systemic clearance in a tissue-specific manner. The genetic models used in this study provide powerful tools to further study CYP3A-mediated xenobiotic metabolism, as well as interactions between CYP3A and other detoxification systems.
Antonius E. van Herwaarden, Els Wagenaar, Cornelia M.M. van der Kruijssen, Robert A.B. van Waterschoot, Johan W. Smit, Ji-Ying Song, Martin A. van der Valk, Olaf van Tellingen, José W.A. van der Hoorn, Hilde Rosing, Jos H. Beijnen, Alfred H. Schinkel