Clinical significance of ABCB1 genotyping in oncology

Alma Hamidovic, Kristine Hahn, Jill Kolesar

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Background. P-glycoprotein (Pgp) is a drug efflux pump that transports natural products, including taxanes and other chemotherapeutic agents, from cells. Several frequent polymorphisms in ATP binding cassette gene B1 (ABCB1) may influence Pgp levels and drug efflux. The purpose of this review was to assess the clinical significance of ABCB1 polymorphisms in oncology. Methods. Peer-reviewed studies were identified through a search of PubMed/MEDLINE (1990-2008) and the ASCO abstracts (2003-2008) database. Included studies described clinical trials where ABCB1 genotyping was performed in patients with cancer. Search terms included ABCB1, Pgp, docetaxel, paclitaxel, irinotecan, imatinib, and anticancer agent. Studies were excluded if the manuscript was not available in English. Results. The influence of polymorphisms in ABCB1 2677G>T/A, 3435C>T, and 1236C>T and progression-free and overall survival in 309 patients from the Australian Ovarian Cancer Study treated with paclitaxel/carboplatin demonstrated that compared to homozygote GG carriers at 2677, women with the minor T/A alleles were significantly less likely to relapse following treatment. Other trials of ABCB1 genotyping in breast and prostate cancer patients receiving taxanes have shown inconsistent results. Pharmacokinetic studies where ABCB1 was genotyped and patients received irinotecan or imatinib have also shown inconsistent results. Conclusion. A number of commercially available drugs are substrates for Pgp, and the ABCB1-variant genotypes are frequent and functionally significant, which may have future implications for drug dosing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-44
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2010


  • Genotyping
  • P-glycoprotein
  • Pyrosequencing
  • Taxanes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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