There is growing evidence that some members of cytochrome P450 enzymes contribute to regulation of normal prenatal development. CYP epoxygenases (CYP2C and CYP2J subfamilies) convert arachidonic acid into four regioisomeric epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs), biologically active molecules involved in mitogenesis and cell signaling. Almost nothing is known about localization of their expression in tissues during human prenatal development. The spatio-temporal expression pattern of CYP2C8, CYP2C9, CYP2C19 and CYP2J2 in human embryonic/fetal intestines, liver, and kidney was investigated by immunohistochemical method. CYP epoxygenases are expressed already in early stages of development in these embryonic/fetal tissues (as early as 7th week of IUD in the intestines, 5th week of IUD in the liver, and 6th week of IUD in the kidney). In kidney, CYP epoxygenases are expressed in the metanephrogenic blastema (but not in the uninduced mesenchyme) and in the tubular system. In the intestines, diverse CYP epoxygenases distribution along crypt-villus axis could suggest role in cell differentiation. Moreover, we detected higher CYP2J2 level in these organs than in adult tissue samples.
Keywords: CYP epoxygenases; human embryos; intestine; kidney; liver.