Purpose: OCT1/3 (Organic Cation Transporter-1 and -3; SLC22A1/3) are transmembrane proteins localized at the basolateral membrane of hepatocytes. They mediate the uptake of cationic endogenous compounds and/or xenobiotics. The present study was set up to verify whether the previously observed variability in OCT activity in hepatocytes may be explained by inter-individual differences in OCT1/3 mRNA levels or OCT1 genotype.
Methods: Twenty-seven batches of cryopreserved human hepatocytes (male and female, age 24–88 y) were characterized for OCT activity, normalized OCT1/3 mRNA expression, and OCT1 genetic mutation. ASP+ (4-[4-(dimethylamino)styryl]-N-methylpyridinium iodide) was used as probe substrate.
Results: ASP+ uptake ranged between 75 ± 61 and 2531 ± 202 pmol/(min × million cells). The relative OCT1 and OCT3 mRNA expression ranged between 0.007–0.46 and 0.0002–0.005, respectively. The presence of one or two nonfunctional SLC22A1 alleles was observed in 13 batches and these exhibited significant (p = 0.04) association with OCT1 and OCT3 mRNA expression. However, direct association between genotype and OCT activity could not be established.
Conclusion: mRNA levels and genotype of OCT only partially explain inter-individual variability in OCT-mediated transport. Our findings illustrate the necessity of in vitro transporter activity profiling for better understanding of inter-individual drug disposition behavior.

Additional Metadata
Keywords drug uptake transporters, fluorescent probe substrate, human hepatocytes, mRNA expression and genetic polymorphism, Organic Cation Transporter (OCT)
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11095-017-2148-9, hdl.handle.net/1765/99013
Journal Pharmaceutical Research
Fattah, S, Shinde, A.B, Matić, M, Baes, M, van Schaik, R.H.N, Allegaert, K.M, … Annaert, P. (2017). Inter-Subject Variability in OCT1 Activity in 27 Batches of Cryopreserved Human Hepatocytes and Association with OCT1 mRNA Expression and Genotype. Pharmaceutical Research, 34(6), 1309–1319. doi:10.1007/s11095-017-2148-9