Organic anion transporter 3 (Oat3/Slc22a8) knockout mice exhibit altered clearance and distribution of penicillin G

Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2007 Oct;293(4):F1332-41. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00319.2007. Epub 2007 Aug 8.


The interaction of renal basolateral organic anion transporter 3 (Oat3) with commonly used pharmacotherapeutics (e.g., NSAIDs, beta-lactams, and methotrexate) has been studied extensively in vitro. However, the in vivo role of Oat3 in drug disposition, in the context of other transporters, glomerular filtration, and metabolism, has not been established. Moreover, recent investigations have identified inactive human OAT3 polymorphisms. Therefore, this investigation was designed to elucidate the in vivo role of Oat3 in the disposition of penicillin G and prototypical substrates using an Oat3 knockout mouse model. Oat3 deletion resulted in a doubling of penicillin's half-life (P < 0.05) and a reduced volume of distribution (P < 0.01), together yielding a plasma clearance that was one-half (P < 0.05, males) to one-third (P < 0.001, females) of that in wild-type mice. Inhibition of Oat3 abolished the differences in penicillin G elimination between genotypes. Hepatic accumulation of penicillin was 2.3 times higher in male knockouts (P < 0.05) and 3.7 times higher in female knockouts (P < 0.001). Female knockouts also exhibited impaired estrone-3-sulfate clearance. Oat3 deletion did not impact p-aminohippurate elimination, providing correlative evidence to studies in Oat1 knockout mice that suggest Oat1 governs tubular uptake of p-aminohippurate. Collectively, these findings are the first to indicate that functional Oat3 is necessary for proper elimination of xenobiotic and endogenous compounds in vivo. Thus Oat3 plays a distinct role in determining the efficacy and toxicity of drugs. Dysfunctional human OAT3 polymorphisms or instances of polypharmacy involving OAT3 substrates may result in altered systemic accumulation of beta-lactams and other clinically relevant compounds.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacokinetics*
  • Estrone / analogs & derivatives
  • Estrone / pharmacokinetics
  • Female
  • Inulin / pharmacokinetics
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Metabolic Clearance Rate / physiology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Organic Anion Transporters, Sodium-Independent / genetics
  • Organic Anion Transporters, Sodium-Independent / physiology*
  • Penicillin G / pharmacokinetics*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Organic Anion Transporters, Sodium-Independent
  • organic anion transport protein 3
  • Estrone
  • Inulin
  • Penicillin G
  • estrone sulfate