Genetic variation in drug transporters in ethnic populations

Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2008 Sep;84(3):412-6. doi: 10.1038/clpt.2008.98. Epub 2008 Jun 4.


Drug-metabolizing enzymes and membrane transporters work in concert to play crucial roles in drug absorption, distribution, and elimination. It is well recognized that genetic variation in drug-metabolizing enzymes contributes substantially to interindividual differences in drug response. With the notable exceptions of CYP1A1 and CYP2E1, genes encoding cytochrome P450s, which are involved in the metabolism of >80% of all drugs used in clinical practice, are highly polymorphic. Interethnic variation in the distribution and frequency of occurrence of variant alleles in drug-metabolizing enzymes is known to alter the rate of drug metabolism in vivo, resulting in interethnic variation in drug disposition and response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter 1
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / physiology*
  • Alleles
  • Ethnic Groups / genetics*
  • Genetic Variation
  • Humans
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Membrane Transport Proteins / metabolism*
  • Pharmacogenetics*


  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter 1
  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters
  • Membrane Transport Proteins