Role of the efflux transporters BCRP and MRP1 in human placental bio-disposition of pravastatin

Marjan Afrouzian, Rabab Al-Lahham, Svetlana Patrikeeva, Meixiang Xu, Valentina Fokina, Wayne G. Fischer, Sherif Z. Abdel-Rahman, Maged Costantine, Mahmoud S. Ahmed, Tatiana Nanovskaya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The expression and activity of human placental transporters during pregnancy could be altered by several factors including pathological changes associated with preeclampsia. The aims of this study were to identify the placental efflux transporters involved in the bio-disposition of pravastatin, determine the protein expression of these transporters and their encoding genes as well as the activity of pravastatin uptake in placentas obtained from patients with preeclampsia. ATP-dependent uptake of [3H]-pravastatin by trophoblast tissue apical and basal membrane vesicles exhibited sigmoidal kinetics. The curved shapes of Eadie-Hofstee plots indicate that more than one placental transporter are involved in the uptake of pravastatin. ATP-dependent uptake of [3H]-pravastatin into vesicles expressing MRP1-5, BCRP, and P-gp, as well as the results of inhibition studies suggest that BCRP and MRP1 are the major placental efflux transporters responsible for the in vitro uptake of pravastatin. Compared to placentas from healthy pregnancies, preeclamptic placentas had increased number of syncytial knots with increased expression of BCRP in their apical membrane and increased expression of MRP1 in the cytoplasm of the syncytiotrophoblast and in cytoplasm of syncytial knots. There was a concomitant increase in ABCC1 but not in ABCG2 gene expressions in preeclamptic placentas. ATP-dependent uptake of [3H]-pravastatin by vesicles prepared from apical membranes of preeclamptic placentas was similar to the uptake by vesicles prepared from placentas obtained after uncomplicated pregnancies (13.9 ± 6.5 vs 14.1 ± 5.8 pmol·mg protein−1 min−1). The transporter-specific changes in the expression of BCRP and MRP1 in preeclamptic placentas did not affect the efflux activity of transporters localized on the apical membrane of the syncytiotrophoblast.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)467-478
Number of pages12
JournalBiochemical Pharmacology
StatePublished - Oct 2018


  • Efflux transporters
  • Placenta
  • Pravastatin
  • Preeclampsia
  • Pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Pharmacology


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