Human drug metabolising cytochrome P450 enzymes: properties and polymorphisms

Naunyn Schmiedebergs Arch Pharmacol. 2004 Jan;369(1):89-104. doi: 10.1007/s00210-003-0819-z. Epub 2003 Oct 22.


The cytochrome P450s are responsible for about 75% of phase I dependent drug metabolism and for the metabolism of a huge amount of dietary constituents and endogenous chemicals. The human has 59 active genes, and 6 of those encode important drug metabolising enzymes. About 40% of cytochrome P450 dependent drug metabolism is catalysed by polymorphic enzymes and such drug P450 interactions are frequently seen in adverse drug reaction reports. In this contribution an update of human cytochrome P450 enzymology and pharmacogenetics is given with particular emphasis on CYP1B1, CYP2B6, CYP2E1 and CYP3As.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / classification
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Inactivation, Metabolic / genetics
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Terminology as Topic
  • Xenobiotics / pharmacokinetics*


  • Xenobiotics
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System