CYP2B6 Genotype-Dependent Inhibition of CYP1A2 and Induction of CYP2A6 by the Antiretroviral Drug Efavirenz in Healthy Volunteers

Ingrid F. Metzger, Nimita Dave, Yvonne Kreutz, Jessica B.L. Lu, Raymond E. Galinsky, Zeruesenay Desta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We investigated the effect of efavirenz on the activities of cytochrome P450 (CYP)1A2, CYP2A6, xanthine oxidase (XO), and N-acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2), using caffeine as a probe. A single 150 mg oral dose of caffeine was administered to healthy volunteers (n = 58) on two separate occasions; with a single 600 mg oral dose of efavirenz and after treatment with 600 mg/day efavirenz for 17 days. Caffeine and its metabolites in plasma and urine were quantified using liquid chromatography/tandem-mass spectrometry. DNA was genotyped for CYP2B6*4 (785A>G), CYP2B6*9 (516G>T), and CYP2B6*18 (983T>C) alleles using TaqMan assays. Relative to single-dose efavirenz treatment, multiple doses of efavirenz decreased CYP1A2 (by 38%) and increased CYP2A6 (by 85%) activities (P < 0.05); XO and NAT2 activities were unaffected. CYP2B6*6*6 genotype was associated with lower CYP1A2 activity following both single and multiple doses of efavirenz. No similar association was noted for CYP2A6 activity. This is the first report showing that efavirenz reduces hepatic CYP1A2 and suggesting chronic efavirenz exposure likely enhances the elimination of CYP2A6 substrates. This is also the first to report the extent of efavirenz–CYP1A2 interaction may be efavirenz exposure-dependent and CYP2B6 genotype-dependent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)657-666
Number of pages10
JournalClinical and translational science
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

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