Hepatic Drug Metabolism in Rats: Impairment in a Dirty Environment

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Science  02 Mar 1973:
Vol. 179, Issue 4076, pp. 896-897
DOI: 10.1126/science.179.4076.896


Reduction of aniline hydroxylase activity, ethylmorphine N-dementhylase activity, and cytochrome P-450 content occurred in hepatic microsomes of rats kept under dirty conditions, defined as accumulation for 1 week of urine and feces in pans under the wire mesh cages. In comparison with rats that had urine and feces removed twice daily from such pans, rats kept over Kimpak bedding or over Litter Green, changed twice daily, also showed reduced drug-metabolizing activity in hepatic microsomes, but to a lesser degree than the dirty rats. Placement of a filter top on cages for 1 week also decreased drug-metabolizing activity. These experiments suggest that the relative cleanliness of an animal's environment can influence hepatic microsomal drug metabolism.