Myeloperoxidase-mediated activation of xenobiotics by human leukocytes

Toxicology. 1993 Oct 5;82(1-3):221-42. doi: 10.1016/0300-483x(93)90066-2.


Peripheral blood leukocytes contain a variety of enzymes that are capable of metabolising xenobiotics. The enzyme myeloperoxidase (MPO) appears to be the most important for drug metabolism. MPO is a peroxidase/oxidase and generates the powerful oxidant hypochlorous acid. MPO- or MPO-generated oxidants are capable of oxidizing a wide variety of compounds and a broad range of functional groups, especially those that contain nitrogen and sulfur. Leukocytes have a role in immune response; therefore, reactive intermediates generated by leukocyte metabolism of xenobiotics may have a role in idiosyncratic drug reactions, particularly those that are immune-mediated such as drug-induced lupus or agranulocytosis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biotransformation
  • Humans
  • Leukocytes / enzymology*
  • Peroxidase / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Peroxidase / metabolism*
  • Xenobiotics / metabolism
  • Xenobiotics / pharmacokinetics*


  • Xenobiotics
  • Peroxidase