Genetic polymorphism of the CYP2C subfamily and excessive serum phenytoin concentration with central nervous system intoxication

Ther Drug Monit. 2000 Apr;22(2):230-2. doi: 10.1097/00007691-200004000-00016.


The authors report on a Japanese adult male patient with a long history of partial seizures that were poorly controlled by conventional doses of phenytoin and other drugs. His treatment was complicated by toxic symptoms and an excessive serum phenytoin concentration, 32.6 microg/mL at a dose of 187.5 mg/day. Polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis disclosed heterozygosity involving cytochrome P450 subfamilies 2C9 (*1/*3) and 2C19 (*1/*3). Currently, it is generally accepted that the former mutation is responsible for the CYP2C9 poor metabolizer phenotype. Pharmacokinetic parameters were estimated by a kinetic analysis, MULTI, using 17 observed dose-concentration data sets: a lower Vmax (5.6 mg/kg/day) and a higher Km (11.5 microg/mL) were observed. Although phenytoin is metabolized predominantly by CYP2C9 with a minor contribution of CYP2C19, patients with the Leu359 variant should be monitored closely when treated with a moderate to high daily dose of phenytoin.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anticonvulsants / blood*
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Phenytoin / blood*
  • Phenytoin / toxicity
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*


  • Anticonvulsants
  • cytochrome P-450 CYP2C subfamily
  • Phenytoin
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System