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LOSS of Mrp1 alters detoxification enzyme expression in a tissue- and hormonal-status-specific manner


Correspondence to: L. J. Bain, Environmental Toxicology Graduate Program, Clemson University, 132 Long Hall, Clemson, SC, 29634 USA. E-mail:


The multidrug resistance-associated protein1 (MRP1/ABCC1) is a member of the ABCC transporter subfamily that mediates the efflux of pharmaceuticals, xenobiotics and steroid hormones, typically as glutathione, glucuronide or sulfate conjugates. Since loss of one transporter can be compensated by increasing the expression of other transporters and conjugation enzymes, we sought to examine compensatory changes in phase I, II and III enzyme expression in extrahepatic tissues, including the kidney, lungs and small intestine of intact or castrated Mrp1−/− male mice. In the kidney, the expression of several P450s, sulfotransferase 1a1 (Sult), glucuronosyltransferases (Ugt) and Mrps2–4, were significantly changed owing to castration alone. The only time genotype mattered was between the castrated FVB and Mrp1 knockout mice. In contrast, expression of the Ugts, Sult 1a1 and Mrp3 in the lungs was significantly downregulated in the Mrp1 knockout mice, so based exclusively on genotype. In the small intestine, there were interactions between steroid hormone levels and genotype, as the expression differences were only found in mice lacking Mrp1, and were changed between intact and castrated animals. The mechanism behind this pattern of expression may be to due to Nrf2 regulation, as its expression mirrors that of the phase II and phase III enzymes. These results indicate that compensatory responses owing to the loss of Mrp1 vary dramatically, depending on the particular tissue. This information will aid in the understanding of how drug uptake, disposition and elimination can be influenced by both hormone status and the presence and magnitude of transporter expression. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.