, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 107-115

Developmental regulation of cytochrome P-450 (b+e) and glutathione transferase (Ya+Yc) gene expression in rat liver

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The expression of cytochrome P-450 (b+e) and glutathione transferase (Ya+Yc) genes has been studied as a function of development in rat liver. The levels of cytochrome P-450 (b+e) mRNAs and their transcription rates are too low for detection in the 19-day old fetal liver before or after phenobarbitone treatment. However, glutathione transferase (Ya+Yc) mRNAs can be detected in the fetal liver as well as their induction after phenobarbitone treatment can be demonstrated. These mRNAs contents as well as their inducibility with phenobarbitone are lower in maternal liver than that of adult nonpregnant female rat liver. Steroid hormone administration to immature rats blocks substantially the phenobarbitone mediated induction of the two mRNA families as well as their transcription. It is suggested that steroid hormones constitute one of the factors responsible for the repression of the cytochrome P-450 (b+e) and glutathione transferase (Ya+Yc) genes in fetal liver.