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Reductive metabolism of oxymatrine is catalyzed by microsomal CYP3A4

Authors Liu W, Shi J, Zhu L, Dong L, Luo F, Zhao M, Wang Y, Hu M, Lu L, Liu Z

Received 12 July 2015

Accepted for publication 23 September 2015

Published 30 October 2015 Volume 2015:9 Pages 5771—5783


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Wei Duan

Wenqin Liu,1,2,* Jian Shi,1,2,* Lijun Zhu,2 Lingna Dong,1 Feifei Luo,2 Min Zhao,2 Ying Wang,2 Ming Hu,2,3 Linlin Lu,2 Zhongqiu Liu1,2

1Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, People’s Republic of China; 2International Institute for Translational Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou, Guangdong, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, University of Houston, Houston, TX, USA

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Abstract: Oxymatrine (OMT) is a pharmacologically active primary quinolizidine alkaloid with various beneficial and toxic effects. It is confirmed that, after oral administration, OMT could be transformed to the more toxic metabolite matrine (MT), and this process may be through the reduction reaction, but the study on the characteristics of this transformation is limited. The aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics of this transformation of OMT in the human liver microsomes (HLMs) and human intestinal microsomes (HIMs) and the cytochrome P450 (CYP) isoforms involved in this transformation. The current studies demonstrated that OMT could be metabolized to MT rapidly in HLMs and HIMs and CYP3A4 greatly contributed to this transformation. All HLMs, HIMs, and CYP3A4 isoform mediated reduction reaction followed typical biphasic kinetic model, and Km, Vmax, and CL were significant higher in HLMs than those in HIMs. Importantly, different oxygen contents could significantly affect the metabolism of OMT, and with the oxygen content decreased, the formation of metabolite was increased, suggesting this transformation was very likely a reduction reaction. Results of this in vitro study elucidated the metabolic pathways and characteristics of metabolism of OMT to MT and would provide a theoretical basis and guidance for the safe application of OMT.

Keywords: oxymatrine, matrine, reduction reaction, CYP3A4, metabolism, microsomes

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