Peganum harmala L. (Zygophyllaceae) is a common plant in Middle East and it is still used traditionally to treat several diseases. The effect of P. harmala extract on the expression of different cytochrome P450s (CYP) involved in drug metabolism was examined in human HepG2 cells. Therefore, HepG2 cells were incubated with increasing concentrations of plant extract and the CYP gene expression was determined by real-time PCR. Our results showed that P. harmala extract significantly increased the expression of CYP1A2, 2C19, and 3A4 whereas; CYP2B6, 2D6 and 2E1 was significantly decreased. We concluded that care should be taken when P. harmala is co-administered with other drugs.
Keywords: Cytochrome P450, HepG2 cells, Peganum harmala L
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