Functional characterization of CYP1 enzymes: Complex formation, membrane localization and function

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Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry


CYP1A1, CYP1A2, and CYP1B1 have a high degree of sequence similarity, similar substrate selectivities and induction characteristics. However, experiments suggest that there are significant differences in their quaternary structures and function. The goal of this study was to characterize the CYP1 proteins regarding their ability to form protein-protein complexes, lipid microdomain localization, and ultimately function. This was accomplished by examining (1) substrate metabolism of the CYP1s as a function of NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase (POR) concentration, and (2) quaternary structure, using bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET). Both CYP1As were able to form BRET-detectable homomeric complexes, which was not observed with CYP1B1. When activities were measured as a function of [POR], CYP1A1 and CYP1B1 showed a hyperbolic response, consistent with mass-action binding; however, CYP1A2 produced a sigmoidal response, suggesting that the homomeric complex affected its function. Differences were observed in their ability to form heteromeric complexes. Whereas CYP1B1 and CYP1A1 formed a complex, neither the CYP1A1/CYP1A2 nor the CYP1B1/CYP1A2 pair formed BRET-detectable complexes. These proteins also differed in their lipid microdomain localization, with CYP1A2 and CYP1B1 residing in ordered membranes, and CYP1A1 in the disordered lipid regions. Taken together, despite their sequence similarities, there are substantial differences in quaternary structures and microdomain localization that can influence enzymatic activities. As these proteins exist in the endoplasmic reticulum with other ER-resident proteins, the P450s need to be considered as part of multi-enzyme systems rather than simply monomeric proteins interacting with their redox partners.

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