Modulation of human serum glutathione S-transferase A1/2 concentration by cruciferous vegetables in a controlled feeding study is influenced by GSTM1 and GSTT1 genotypes

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2009 Nov;18(11):2974-8. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-09-0701.


Glutathione S-transferases (GST) detoxify a wide range of carcinogens. Isothiocyanates (ITC), from cruciferous vegetables, are substrates for and inducers of GST. GST variants may alter ITC clearance such that response to crucifers varies by genotype. In a randomized cross-over trial, we tested the hypothesis that changes in serum GSTA1/2 concentration in response to cruciferous vegetable feeding depends on GSTM1/GSTT1 genotype. Thirty-three men and 34 women (age 20-40 years) ate four 14-day controlled diets--basal (vegetable-free), basal supplemented with two different doses of crucifers ("single dose" and "double dose"), and single-dose cruciferous-plus-apiaceous vegetables--fed per kilogram of body weight. Fasting bloods from days 0, 7, 11, and 14 of each diet period were analyzed for serum GSTA1/2 by ELISA. GSTA1/2 increased with single- and double-dose cruciferous compared with basal diet (10% and 13%, respectively; P = 0.02 and 0.004), but cruciferous-plus-apiaceous did not differ from basal (P = 0.59). Overall, GSTA1/2 was higher in GSTM1-null/GSTT1-null than GSTM1+/GSTT1+ individuals (4,198 +/- 338 and 3,372 +/- 183 pg/mL; P = 0.03). The formal interaction of genotype-by-diet was not statistically significant, but the GSTA1/2 increase during the single-dose cruciferous diet was among GSTM1-null/GSTT1-null individuals (by 28%; P = 0.008), largely explained by GSTM1-null/GSTT1-null men (by 41%; P = 0.01). GSTA1/2 increased during the double-dose cruciferous diet in both GSTM1-null/GSTT1-null men (by 35%; P = 0.04) and GSTM1+/GSTT1+ men (by 26%; P = 0.01) but not in women. In summary, cruciferous vegetable supplementation increased GSTA1/2, but the effect was most marked in GSTM1-null/GSTT1-null men.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Glutathione Transferase / blood*
  • Glutathione Transferase / genetics*
  • Homozygote
  • Humans
  • Isoenzymes / blood*
  • Male
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Prognosis
  • Vegetables*
  • Young Adult


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Isoenzymes
  • glutathione S-transferase T1
  • GSTA1 protein, human
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • glutathione S-transferase M1
  • glutathione S-transferase alpha