Urinary elimination of coproporphyrins is dependent on ABCC2 polymorphisms and represents a potential biomarker of MRP2 activity in humans

J Biomed Biotechnol. 2011;2011:498757. doi: 10.1155/2011/498757. Epub 2011 Mar 14.


MRP2 encoded by ABCC2 gene is involved in the secretion of numerous drugs and endogenous substrates. Patients with Dubin-Johnson syndrome due to mutation in ABCC2 gene have elevated urinary coproporphyrin ratio (UCP I/(I + III)). Here we investigated whether this ratio could serve as a biomarker of MRP2 function. Phenotype-genotype relationships were studied in 74 healthy subjects by measuring individual UCP I/(I + III) ratio obtained on 24-hour urine and by analyzing five common SNPs in ABCC2 gene. The UCP I/(I + III) ratio varied from 14.7% to 46.0% in our population. Subjects with 3972TT genotype had a higher ratio (P = .04) than those carrying the C allele. This higher UCP I/(I + III) ratio was correlated with a higher level of isomer I excretion. This study provides a proof of concept that UCP I/(I + III) ratio can be used as a biomarker of MRP2 function in clinical studies as it provides quantitative information about the in vivo activity of MRP2 in a given patient.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Coproporphyrins / urine*
  • Female
  • Genetic Association Studies
  • Genotype
  • Health
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Protein 2
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide / genetics*
  • Time Factors


  • ABCC2 protein, human
  • Biomarkers
  • Coproporphyrins
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Protein 2
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins