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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Isolation and characterization of the monkey UDP-glucuronosyltransferase cDNA clone monUGT1A01 active on bilirubin and estrogens.

Although enzymes that catalyze the formation of steroids are well known, less information is available about the enzymes involved in the metabolism of these hormones. Steroid glucuronidation, by UDP-glucuronosyltransferase enzymes, is one mechanism by which steroid hormones can be metabolized and eliminated from a tissue. Previous results suggest that the monkey represents the most appropriate animal model for studying the physiologic relevance of steroid glucuronidating enzymes. The monkey UGT1A01 cDNA clone was isolated by RT-PCR amplification of the liver RNA. The cDNA contains an open reading frame of 1599 bp encoding a protein of 533 residues. The primary structure of monkey UGT1A01 is 95% identical to human UGT1A1. To compare monkey and human UGT1A1 enzymes, both cDNA clones were transfected into HK293 cells and stable cell lines expressing each UGT1A1 protein were established. Western blot analysis of the monUGT1A01-HK293 and hUGT1A1-HK293 cell lines using a anti-UGT1A polyclonal antibody (RC-71) revealed expression of exogenous 55 kDa UGT1 proteins. The transferase activities of monkey and human UGT1A1 proteins were tested with over 60 compounds and were demonstrated to be active on the same compounds. For endogenous compounds only bilirubin and C18 steroids were glucuronidated by these enzymes. Using microsome preparation (from HK293 cell expressing monkey UGT1A01), the apparent K(m) values were 13, 5 and 6 microM for the conjugation of estradiol, 2-hydroxyestradiol and 2-hydroxyestrone, respectively, and were very similar to the values obtained with human UGT1A1. Specific RT-PCR analysis demonstrated the expression of monkey and human UGT1A1 transcripts in several tissues including liver, kidney, intestine, prostate, testis and ovary suggesting a contribution of this isoenzyme to estrogen metabolism in the cynomolgus monkey as in human.[1]


  1. Isolation and characterization of the monkey UDP-glucuronosyltransferase cDNA clone monUGT1A01 active on bilirubin and estrogens. Vallée, M., Albert, C., Beaudry, G., Hum, D.W., Bélanger, A. J. Steroid Biochem. Mol. Biol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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