The glutathione transferase kappa family

Drug Metab Rev. 2011 May;43(2):281-91. doi: 10.3109/03602532.2011.556122. Epub 2011 Mar 23.


Glutathione transferase (GST) kappa, also named mitochondrial GST, is a very ancient protein family with orthologs in bacteria and eukaryotes. Both the structure and the subcellular localization of GSTK1-1, in mitochondria and peroxisomes, make this enzyme distinct from cytosolic GSTs. Rodent and human GSTK1 exhibit activity towards a number of model GST substrates and, in Caenorhabditis elegans, this enzyme may be involved in energy and lipid metabolism, two functions related to mitochondria and peroxisomes. Interestingly, GST kappa is also a key regulator of adiponectin biosynthesis and multimerization suggesting that it might function as a chaperone to facilitate correct folding and assembly of proteins. Since adiponectin expression has been correlated with insulin resistance, obesity and diabetes, GSTK1 expression level which is negatively correlated with obesity in mice and human adipose tissues may be an important factor in these metabolic disorders. Furthermore, a polymorphism in the hGSTK1 promoter has been associated with insulin secretion and fat deposition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Glutathione Transferase / chemistry
  • Glutathione Transferase / genetics
  • Glutathione Transferase / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Isoenzymes
  • Mitochondria / enzymology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Organ Specificity
  • Peroxisomes / enzymology
  • Phylogeny
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Species Specificity
  • Substrate Specificity


  • Isoenzymes
  • GSTK1 protein, human
  • Glutathione Transferase