2008 Volume 31 Issue 5 Pages 893-896
The Kampo medicines are more and more often used in recent years, usually together with the Western drugs. The need for the investigation of drug interactions between Kampo medicines and Western drugs are, therefore, widely recognized. In the present study, the effects of 3 Kampo medicines (Rikkunshito, Yokukansan and Boiogito) on the activity of cytochrome P450 (CYP), a superfamily of drug-metabolizing enzymes, were investigated in an in vitro study using human CYP recombinants. Their effects on the P-glycoprotein (P-gp), one of the major drug transporters, were also evaluated by the ATPase assay using human P-gp membranes and verapamil as a substrate. The inhibition rate of Rikkunshito, Yokukansan and Boiogito on human CYP3A4, 2C9, 2C19, 2D6 and 2E1 was less than 50% at the concentrations below 0.1 mg/ml except for the inhibition of CYP2D6 by Boiogito. Furthermore, none of the Kampo medicines affected the ATPase activity at the concentrations lower than 0.1 mg/ml, either in the absence or presence of verapamil, indicating their low inhibitory potency against P-gp. These findings indicate that Rikkunshito, Yokukansan and Boiogito are unlikely to cause clinically relevant drug interactions involving the inhibition of major CYP isozymes and P-gp.