Drug metabolism and disposition: the biological fate of chemicals

Hepatic Cyp2d and Cyp26a1 mRNAs and activities are increased during mouse pregnancy.

PMID 23150428


There is considerable evidence that drug disposition is altered during human pregnancy and based on probe drug studies, CYP2D6 activity increases during human pregnancy. The aim of this study was to determine whether the changes of CYP2D6 activity observed during human pregnancy could be replicated in the mouse, and explore possible mechanisms of increased CYP2D6 activity during pregnancy. Cyp2d11, Cyp2d22, Cyp2d26 and Cyp2d40 mRNA was increased (P < 0.05) on gestational days (GD) 15 and 19 compared with the non-pregnant controls. There was no change (P > 0.05) in Cyp2d9 and Cyp2d10 mRNA. In agreement with the increased Cyp2d mRNA, Cyp2d-mediated dextrorphan formation from dextromethorphan was increased 2.7-fold (P < 0.05) on GD19 (56.8±39.4 pmol/min/mg protein) when compared with the non-pregnant controls (20.8±11.2 pmol/min/mg protein). An increase in Cyp26a1 mRNA (10-fold) and retinoic acid receptor (Rar)β mRNA (2.8-fold) was also observed during pregnancy. The increase in Cyp26a1 and Rarβ mRNA during pregnancy indicates increased retinoic acid signaling in the liver during pregnancy. A putative retinoic acid response element was identified within the Cyp2d40 promoter and the mRNA of Cyp2d40 correlated (P < 0.05) with Cyp26a1 and Rarβ. These results show that Cyp2d mRNA is increased during mouse pregnancy the and mouse may provide a suitable model to investigate the mechanisms underlying the increased clearance of CYP2D6 probes observed during human pregnancy. Our findings also suggest that retinoic acid signaling in the liver is increased during pregnancy, which may have broader implications to energy homeostasis in the liver during pregnancy.