Immunohistochemical localization of cytochrome P450b/e in hepatic and extrahepatic tissues of the rat

Biochem Pharmacol. 1989 Oct 1;38(19):3305-22. doi: 10.1016/0006-2952(89)90629-1.


The cellular distribution of cytochrome P450b/e has been studied in the liver and a number of extrahepatic tissues in the Wistar rat by immunocytochemistry, using two monoclonal antibodies, 10/1 and 1/4, raised against the major phenobarbitone-inducible form of cytochrome P450. The specificity of these antibodies was verified by a number of techniques. In Western blotting, both antibodies recognised a single band of Mr 52,000 in liver microsomes from rats pre-treated with phenobarbitone, acetone and isosafrole, which co-migrated with a purified preparation of cytochrome P450b. In untreated rats, a weak specific immunostain was visible across the whole of the liver lobule, with stronger staining in a few hepatocytes around the central vein. Immunoreactive cytochrome P450b/e was also found in the Clara cells of the lung and in the enterocytes of the small intestine, with maximal staining at the tips of the villi. No immunoreactive cytochrome P450b/e was detected in kidney, testis or pancreas. Phenobarbitone treatment resulted in a strong, specific immunostain of all hepatic centrilobular cells, antibody titration indicating that induction of cytochrome P450b/e had occurred. Marked induction was also found in the enterocytes of the small intestine, a strong immunostain being apparent in cells along the length of the villus, from crypt to tip. No induction was apparent in lung, kidney, testis or pancreas. Immunoquantification of cytochrome P450b/e, by densitometric scanning of dot blots probed with a monoclonal antibody, 10/1, confirmed these observations. Thus, there are very marked, specific inter- and intra-tissue differences in both the expression and inducibility of cytochrome P450b/e in the rat.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / analysis*
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / biosynthesis
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / immunology
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Isoenzymes / analysis*
  • Liver / enzymology*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Isoenzymes
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System