Recently, we proposed that singlet oxygen ((1)O(2)) plays an essential role in microsomal cytochrome P450 (P450)-dependent p-hydroxylation of aniline and O-deethylation of 7-ethoxycoumarin. We then examined whether the role of (1)O(2) is general in the P450-dependent substrate oxidations. In the present study, we examined omega- and (omega-1)-hydroxylations of lauric acid, O-demethylation of p-nitroanisole, and N-demethylation of aminopyrine in rat liver microsomes. The addition of beta-carotene and NaN(3) significantly suppressed these reactions in a concentration-dependent manner, and (1)O(2) during the reactions was detected by ESR spin-trapping using 2,2,6,6-tetramethyl-4-piperidone (TMPD) as a (1)O(2)-spin trapping reagent, where the addition of (1)O(2) quenchers, SKF-525A as a P450 inhibitor, or p-nitroanisole decreased ESR signal intensities due to TMPD-(1)O(2) adduct. Next, we examined the effect of (1)O(2) quenchers on P450-dependent reactions in the human liver microsomes, and (1)O(2) was also indicated to be an active species in substrate hydroxylations and dealkylations such as nifedipine oxidation by CYP3A4. On the basis of the results, we concluded that (1)O(2) is an essentially important active oxygen species in both rat and human P450-dependent substrate oxidations.