Liver Detox Genes – CYP2E1

This is part of an ongoing series on the genes involved in detoxification.

The CYP2E1 gene codes for an enzyme (of the same name) that is involved in the metabolism of several important drugs as well as the conversion of ethanol to acetaldehyde.  CYP2E1 is involved in the breakdown or activation of several anesthetics, as well as several industrial products including benzene and ethylene glycol.  It is induced by ethanol, and polymorphisms of CYP2E1 are being studied in relation to alcohol induced liver disease. Low levels of alcohol in occasional drinkers are metabolized through the ADH enzyme; higher levels of alcohol induce CYP2E1. [ref]

Polymorphisms: there are a few polymorphisms with CYP2E1 that are currently being studied.  While polymorphisms may play a role in increasing or decreasing this enzyme, environmental factors such as alcohol usage may play a larger role for CYP2E1.

Check your 23andMe results for rs2031920:

  • T/T: CYP2E1 (Rsal) – slightly decreased risk of lung cancer [ref]
  • C/T: Carrier of one CYP2E1-Rsal allele – slightly decreased risk of lung cancer
  • C/C: normal

CYP2E1 is also involved in the metabolism of acrylamide, which is produced through the Maillard reaction when food is cooked.  Some examples of acrylamide being formed in food would be in toast, french fries, potato chips, cookies, toasted breakfast cereal.

Check your 23andMe results for rs6413419:

  • A/A: CYP2E1*4 – combined with GSTM1 null, more problems with acrylamide [ref]
  • A/G: Carrier of one CYP2E1*4 allele
  • G/G: normal


Check your 23andMe results for rs2070676:

  • G/G: CYP2E1*1B – studied in Parkinson’s disease risk [ref]
  • C/G: Carrier of one CYP2E1*1B allele
  • C/C: normal

(note: plus orientation)

More to read:
CYP2E1 overview
Study showing that Vitamin C and E mediate the effects of alcohol induced CYP2E1

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One Comment on “Liver Detox Genes – CYP2E1

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