Expression of cytochrome P450 in tumor tissues and its association with cancer development

Front Biosci. 2004 May 1;9:1967-76. doi: 10.2741/1378.


CYPs (cytochrome P450s) catalyze the conversion of numerous numbers of xenobiotics including carcinogens and drugs. CYPs can be involved in metabolic pathways of activation of procarcinogens and/or inactivation of carcinogens during the tumorigenic processes. Recently, increasing number of cancer tissues as well as normal tissues have been found to express a variety of CYPs. The local expression of CYPs in tumors appears to be very important for the management of cancers since CYPs expressed in tumors may be involved in activation and/or inactivation of anticancer drugs. The expression of CYPs in tumors may also convert endogenous substrates to metabolites that facilitate cancer development. In this review, we summarize the association of CYP expression in cancer tissues with carcinogenesis and cancer treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / metabolism
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Breast Neoplasms / enzymology
  • Colonic Neoplasms / enzymology
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / genetics
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / metabolism*
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / physiology
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / enzymology
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Xenobiotics / metabolism


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Xenobiotics
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System