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Sequenom, Human BioMolecular Research Institute Find Drug Metabolism Gene Variation Across Populations

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 19 - A study by Sequenom and the Human BioMolecular Research Institute shows the role of genetic variation of a drug metabolism gene across different populations.


The study, appearing in the December issue of the journal Drug Metabolism and Disposition, analyzed relative frequencies of single and multiple site alleles, haplotypes, and genotypes of the human flavin-containing monooxygenase, form 3 - an enzyme related to drug metabolism - among different ethnic populations. The findings link a defect in the enzyme to abnormal metabolism of chemicals and drugs, according to the study authors.


Sample populations included Caucasian, African American, Hispanic, and Asian males and females living in the United States.


"This paper provides important new information on genetic polymorphisms in various ethnic groups in expression of a drug metabolizing enzyme in human liver," David Williams, a professor of environmental and molecular toxicology at OregonStateUniversity, said in statement. "The benefits of this study are that it soon may be possible to rapidly screen individuals genetically and determine which FMOs they express in order to optimize therapeutic dosages of drugs for the FMO that plays a major role in metabolism."


Sequenom and the non-profit Human BioMolecular Research Institute, both based in San Diego, Calif., used a high-throughput chip-based genotype variation detection method combining Sequenom's MassArray genotyping technologies and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry to look for common polymorphisms. The researchers also compared the genetic variation of nonhuman primate FMO3 with the human FMO3 gene.


The study was partly funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health and the University of California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program.

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