We cloned a cDNA encoding a novel CYP2C enzyme, called P450 M-2C, from a marmoset liver. The deduced amino acid sequence showed high identities to those of human CYP2C8 (87%), CYP2C9 (78%) and CYP2C19 (77%). The P450 M-2C enzyme expressed in yeast cells catalyzed p-methylhydroxylation of only tolbutamide among four substrates tested, paclitaxel as a CYP2C8 substrate, diclofenac and tolbutamide as CYP2C9 substrates and S-mephenytoin as a CYP2C19 substrate. p-Methylhydroxylation of tolbutamide by marmoset liver microsomes showed monophasic kinetics, and the apparent K(m) value (1.2 mM) for the substrate was similar to that of the recombinant P450 M-2C (1.8 mM). Although all of the recombinant human CYP2C8, CYP2C9 and CYP2C19 expressed in yeast cells catalyzed tolbutamide p-methylhydroxylation, the kinetic profile of CYP2C8 was most similar to that of P450 M-2C. Tolbutamide oxidation by the marmoset liver microsomes and the recombinant P450 M-2C was inhibited most effectively by quercetin, a CYP2C8 inhibitor, followed by omeprazole, a CYP2C19 inhibitor, whereas sulfaphenazole, a CYP2C9 inhibitor, was less potent under the conditions used. These results indicate that P450 M-2C is the major tolbutamide p-methylhydroxylase in the marmoset liver.