Racial disparity in drug disposition in the digestive tract

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The major determinants of drug or, al bioavailability are absorption and metabolism in the digestive tract. Genetic variations can cause significant differences in transporter and enzyme protein expression and function. The racial distribution of selected efflux transporter (i.e., Pgp, BCRP, MRP2) and metabolism enzyme (i.e., UGT1A1, UGT1A8) single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that are highly expressed in the digestive tract are reviewed in this paper with emphasis on the allele frequency and the impact on drug absorption, metabolism, and in vivo drug exposure. Additionally, preclinical and clinical models used to study the impact of transporter/enzyme SNPs on protein expression and function are also reviewed. The results showed that allele frequency of the major drug efflux transporters and the major intestinal metabolic enzymes are highly different in different races, leading to different drug disposition and exposure. The conclusion is that genetic polymorphism is frequently observed in different races and the related protein expression and drug absorption/metabolism function and drug in vivo exposure can be significantly affected, resulting in variations in drug response. Basic research on race-dependent drug absorption/metabolism is expected, and FDA regulations of drug dosing adjustment based on racial disparity are suggested.

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