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Qing-Yu Zhang, Ph.D.
The mammalian intestine provides the first site for metabolism of ingested xenobiotics, including therapeutic drugs, pollutants, and chemical carcinogens. These metabolic functions are performed by a variety of biotransformation enzymes, including the cytochrome P450 superfamily of monooxygenases.
The overall goal of this group is to study the roles of small intestinal P450 enzymes in drug bioavailability and chemical toxicology. Current research topics include the regulation of small intestinal drug metabolism by inflammation and other pathologic conditions; the role of tissue-selective P450 enzymes, such as CYP2S1, in intestinal xenobiotic metabolism; the genetic polymorphisms of human P450 enzymes involved in intestinal drug clearance; and the utility of novel transgenic mouse models for studying the in vivo function of small intestinal P450 enzymes in drug metabolism, chemical carcinogenesis, and intestinal dysfunction.
These studies will ultimately lead to a better understanding of the environmental and genetic bases of the interindividual differences in susceptibility to adverse drug reactions, and provide new strategies for improvement of therapeutic efficacy and prevention of environmental diseases involving the small intestine.