ABC drug transporters: hereditary polymorphisms and pharmacological impact in MDR1, MRP1 and MRP2

Pharmacogenomics. 2001 Feb;2(1):51-64. doi: 10.1517/14622416.2.1.51.


Transport by ATP-dependent efflux pumps, such as P-glycoprotein (PGP) and multi-drug resistance related proteins (MRPs), influences bioavailability and disposition of drugs. These efflux pumps serve as defence mechanisms and determine bioavailability and CNS concentrations of many drugs. However, despite the fact that substantial data have been accumulated on the structure, function and pharmacological role of ABC transporters and even though modification of PGP function is an important mechanism of drug interactions and adverse effects in humans, there is a striking lack of data on variability of the underlying genes. This review focuses on the human drug transporter proteins PGP (MDR1) and the multi-drug resistance proteins MRP1 and MRP2. An overview is provided of pharmacologically relevant genetic, structural and functional data as well as on hereditary polymorphisms, their phenotypical consequences and pharmacological implications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B / genetics
  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B / metabolism*
  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 1 / metabolism*
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / genetics*
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / metabolism*
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / pharmacology
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / physiology
  • Animals
  • Drug Resistance / genetics
  • Genes, MDR
  • Genetic Variation
  • Humans
  • Membrane Transport Proteins*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins
  • Pharmacogenetics
  • Polymorphism, Genetic / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide


  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B
  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 1
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters
  • Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins
  • multidrug resistance-associated protein 2
  • multidrug resistance-associated protein 1