Background: One severe side effect of calcineurin inhibitors (CNIs: such as cyclosporine [CsA] and tacrolimus [FK506]) is neurotoxicity. CNIs are substrates for CYP3A5 and P-glycoprotein (P-gp), encoded by ABCB1 gene. In the present study, we hypothesized that genetic variability in CYP3A5 and ABCB1 genes may be associated with CNI-related neurotoxicity.Methods: The effects of the polymorphisms, such as CYP3A5 A6986G, ABCB1 C1236T, G2677T/A, and C3435T, associated with CNI-related neurotoxicity were evaluated in 63 patients with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.Results: Of the 63 cases, 15 cases developed CNI-related neurotoxicity. In the CsA patient group (n = 30), age (p = 0.008), hypertension (p = 0.017), renal dysfunction (p < 0.001), ABCB1 C1236T (p < 0.001), and G2677T/A (p = 0.014) were associated with neurotoxicities. The CC genotype at ABCB1 C1236T was associated with it, but not significantly so (p = 0.07), adjusted for age, hypertension, and renal dysfunction. In the FK506 patient group (n = 33), CYP3A5 A6986G (p < 0.001), and ABCB1 C1236T (p = 0.002) were associated with neurotoxicity. At least one A allele at CYP3A5 A6986G (expressor genotype) was strongly associated with it according to logistic regression analysis (p = 0.01; OR, 8.5; 95% CI, 1.4-51.4).Conclusion: The polymorphisms in CYP3A5 and ABCB1 genes were associated with CNI-related neurotoxicity. This outcome is probably because of CYP3A5 or P-gp functions or metabolites of CNIs.
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