Fundamental Toxicological Sciences

Paper Details

Fundamental Toxicological Sciences
Vol. 7 No. 1 January 15, 2020 p.9-14
Usefulness and limitations of mRNA measurement in HepaRG cells for evaluation of cytochrome P450 induction
  • Kenta Mizoi (Faculty of Pharmacy, Takasaki University of Health and Welfare /
Kenta Mizoi 1) , Yuuki Fukai 1) , Eiko Matsumoto 1) , Satoshi Koyama 1) 2) , Seiichi Ishida 3) , Hajime Kojima 3) , Takuo Ogihara 1) 4)
1) Faculty of Pharmacy, Takasaki University of Health and Welfare , 2) RIKEN Cluster for Science, Technology and Innovation Hub , 3) Biological Safety Research Center, National Institute of Health Sciences , 4) Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Takasaki University of Health and Welfare
Keywords: CYP mRNA, Induction, Correlation, Toxicity

Cytochrome P450s (CYPs) are involved in the metabolism of various drugs, and may generate toxic metabolites or intermediates that result in drug-induced liver injury (DILI). Consequently, inducers of CYPs may promote DILI. In a draft test guideline, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) recommends measurement of the metabolic activity of CYP as an index for assessing CYP-inducing activity. However, change of mRNA level has also been used as a simple parameter to evaluate CYP induction. In this study, therefore, we examined the usefulness and limitations of mRNA expression measurement for evaluation of the induction of CYP1A2, CYP2B6, and CYP3A4 by omeprazole, phenobarbital, and rifampicin (RIF), respectively, in HepaRG cells, a well-established cell line derived from human hepatocellular carcinoma. The results of mRNA measurement correlated well with the results of metabolic activity measurement in the lower concentration ranges for all inducers, even though we observed significant decreases in albumin and urea secretion in the presence of 10 µM RIF, reflecting its known hepatotoxicity. Our results indicate that mRNA measurements and metabolic activity measurements in HepaRG cells generally give comparable results for fold-induction of CYPs.