2012 Volume 35 Issue 4 Pages 473-480
Infection-associated inflammation can alter the expression levels and functions of cytochrome P450s (CYPs). Cyp gene expression is regulated by the activation of several nuclear receptors, including pregnane X receptor (PXR), constitutive androstane receptor (CAR), and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR). These receptors can be activated by xenobiotics, including medicines. Here, to study the xenobiotic-induced fluctuations in CYP during inflammation, we examined the effect of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) treatment on the level of mRNAs encoding hepatic CYPs induced by xenobiotic-activated nuclear receptors, in mice. Both the mRNA induction of Cyp genes and the metabolic activities of CYP proteins were examined. LPS treatment caused a significant decrease in the induced expression of the mRNAs for Cyp3a11, 2c29, 2c55, and 1a2, but not for Cyp2b10. To assess the CYP enzymatic activities, CYP3A-mediated testosterone 6β-hydroxylation and the intrinsic clearance (CLint) of nifedipine in liver microsomes were measured in mice treated with the xenobiotic pregnenolone-16alpha-carbonitrile (PCN) with or without LPS administration. Both assays revealed that the CYP3A activity, which was induced by PCN, declined significantly after LPS treatment, and this decline correlated with the Cyp3a11 mRNA level. In addition, we found that the mRNAs for interleukin (IL)-1β and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) α were increased after treatment with LPS plus xenobiotics. Our findings demonstrated that LPS treatment reduces the PXR- and AhR-mediated, and possibly CAR-mediated Cyp gene expression and further suggest that these decreases are dependent on inflammatory cytokines in the liver.