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Thursday, March 12, 2009

2008 paper : Stephen Mitchell on FMO enzyme

Mitchell SC.
Biomolecular Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, South Kensington, London.

Whilst the scientific community was celebrating the truly momentous discovery of a 'mixed function oxidase' another oxidase was quietly working behind the scenes, mopping up soft nucleophiles and, as it had undoubtedly being doing for aeons, aiding then unknown in the metabolism of xenobiotics and the protection of life forms. This enzyme, flavin mono-oxygenase, has subsequently been shown to be a major player, if not yet an equal partner with cytochrome(s) P450, in the metabolism of both endogenous biochemicals and foreign compounds that enter the human organism. This article outlines the importance of the flavin mono-oxygenases and examines their susceptibility to activity modulation by exogenous factors...
This would be an interesting read but sadly is not available free. It would likely make a good paper to show experts, who are likely very aware of the Cytochrome P450 group of oxidizing enzymes, but not the FMO group (which is currently recognised as being the 'trimethylaminuria causing' enzyme, but may turn out to be the 'generally smelly' enzyme, since it deals with sulfides and amines in particular).

Dr Mitchell has been responsible for many of the TMAU/FMO3 papers, and seems instrumental in instigating the first (international) TMAU workshop in 1999. It looks as if it was him who was the expert in the BBC documentary on TMAU (who the young boy visited). However he should be regarded as an FMO/TMAU expert and most of his TMAU work was done some years back. He also does work in many other areas of academic research. It's probably best to look elsewhere for expert contacts regarding fecal body odor and TMAU and other systemic body odors. Possibly those experts involved in healthcare may be more likely contacts.

Correction: the Dr in the BBC TMAU documentary was in fact Dr. Chris Hendriksz of the Birmingham Childrens Hospital


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