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The enzyme TPMT

The enzyme TPMT (full name: thiopurine S-methyltransferase) plays a role in breaking down drugs from the thiopurine group. The enzyme TPMT is involved in the metabolisation of, amongst other things, the anti-tumour drugs mercaptopurine and thioguanine, as well as immunosuppressants like azathioprine. These drugs are used in the treatment of cancer and Crohn’s disease, in the event of organ transplants and to treat inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and inflammation of the bowel, liver or skin, for example.

Azathioprine and the enzyme TPMT

Azathioprine is processed to a large extent by the enzyme TPMT. The activity of this enzyme can vary considerably depending on your genetic predisposition, which means the efficacy of azathioprine can also differ from person to person.

Information about your genetic predisposition may therefore provide grounds for extra vigilance in relation to a treatment with azathioprine.

Read more about Azathioprine »

Mercaptopurine and the enzyme TPMT

Mercaptopurine is processed to a large extent by the enzyme TPMT and NUDt15. The activity of this enzyme can vary considerably depending on your genetic predisposition, which means the efficacy of mercaptopurine can also differ from person to person.

Information about your genetic predisposition may therefore provide grounds for extra vigilance in relation to a treatment with mercaptopurine.

Read more about Mercaptopurine »

Thioguanine and the enzyme TPMT

Thioguanine is processed to a large extent by the enzymes TPMT and NUDT15. The activity of these enzymes can vary considerably depending on your genetic predisposition, which means the efficacy of thioguanine can also differ from person to person.

Information about your genetic predisposition may therefore provide grounds for extra vigilance in relation to a treatment with thioguanine.

Read more about Tioguanine »

Genetic predisposition
The activity of the enzyme TPMT varies from one individual to another. This variation can be partly explained by genetic variations. In people with TPMT deficiency (reduced activity) drugs from the thiopurine group can build up in the body and cause side effects. Reduced activity of the enzyme TPMT is found in roughly 10% of the European population; the enzyme is completely inactive in 0.3% of Europeans.
When a genotype is determined variations in the TPMT gene are indicated by two so-called alleles. Each allele has a name consisting of an asterisk (*) and a number. An example of a possible TPMT genotype is TPMT*2/*3A.
At iGene we determine the following variants (alleles) of the TPMT gene: TPMT*2, TPMT*3A, TPMT*3B, TPMT*3C, TPMT*4, TPMT*11, TPMT*14, TPMT*15, TPMT*23, TPMT*29 and other (classified as TPMT*1).