Special Issue "Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption"

A special issue of Pharmaceutics (ISSN 1999-4923). This special issue belongs to the section "Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Kiyohiko Sugano
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Molecular Pharmaceutics Lab., College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ritsumeikan University, 1-1-1 Noji-higashi, Kusatsu, Shiga 525-8577, Japan
Interests: oral absorption; gastrointestinal physiology; drug property; in vitro model; mechanistic model; modeling and simulation literacy

Special Issue Information

Dear Collegaues,

Mechanistic in vitro and in silico modeling of oral drug absorption is anticipated to enable accurate in vivo prediction. To achieve this goal, a better understanding of gastrointestinal physiology, drug properties, and molecular-level mechanisms is critically important.The aim of this Special Issue is to highlight current progress in this field. The scope of this issue includes in vitro models, mathematical mechanistic models, gastrointestinal physiology, drug properties, and related areas in oral drug absorption. In addition, modeling and simulation (M&S) literacy is the key to progress. Easy case-by-case parameter fitting underlies the sound development of sciences, as Ptolemy’s model did for astronomy over 1300 years. Therefore, articles related to M&S literacy are also welcome (e.g., identifiability analysis).

Prof. Kiyohiko Sugano
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • oral absorption
  • gastrointestinal physiology
  • drug property
  • in vitro model
  • mechanistic model
  • modeling and simulation literacy

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

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Article
Bottom-Up Physiologically Based Oral Absorption Modeling of Free Weak Base Drugs
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(9), 844; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12090844 - 03 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 946
Abstract
In this study, we systematically evaluated “bottom-up” physiologically based oral absorption modeling, focusing on free weak base drugs. The gastrointestinal unified theoretical framework (the GUT framework) was employed as a simple and transparent model. The oral absorption of poorly soluble free weak base [...] Read more.
In this study, we systematically evaluated “bottom-up” physiologically based oral absorption modeling, focusing on free weak base drugs. The gastrointestinal unified theoretical framework (the GUT framework) was employed as a simple and transparent model. The oral absorption of poorly soluble free weak base drugs is affected by gastric pH. Alternation of bulk and solid surface pH by dissolving drug substances was considered in the model. Simple physicochemical properties such as pKa, the intrinsic solubility, and the bile micelle partition coefficient were used as input parameters. The fraction of a dose absorbed (Fa) in vivo was obtained by reanalyzing the pharmacokinetic data in the literature (15 drugs, a total of 85 Fa data). The AUC ratio with/without a gastric acid-reducing agent (AUCr) was collected from the literature (22 data). When gastric dissolution was neglected, Fa was underestimated (absolute average fold error (AAFE) = 1.85, average fold error (AFE) = 0.64). By considering gastric dissolution, predictability was improved (AAFE = 1.40, AFE = 1.04). AUCr was also appropriately predicted (AAFE = 1.54, AFE = 1.04). The Fa values of several drugs were slightly overestimated (less than 1.7-fold), probably due to neglecting particle growth in the small intestine. This modeling strategy will be of great importance for drug discovery and development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Article
Exploring the Effect of Esomeprazole on Gastric and Duodenal Fluid Volumes and Absorption of Ritonavir
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(7), 670; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12070670 - 17 Jul 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 856
Abstract
Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), frequently prescribed to lower gastric acid secretion, often exert an effect on the absorption of co-medicated drug products. A previous study showed decreased plasma levels of the lipophilic drug ritonavir after co-administration with the PPI Nexium (40 mg esomeprazole), even [...] Read more.
Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), frequently prescribed to lower gastric acid secretion, often exert an effect on the absorption of co-medicated drug products. A previous study showed decreased plasma levels of the lipophilic drug ritonavir after co-administration with the PPI Nexium (40 mg esomeprazole), even though duodenal concentrations were not affected. The present study explored if a PPI-induced decrease in gastrointestinal (GI) fluid volume might contribute to the reduced absorption of ritonavir. In an exploratory cross-over study, five volunteers were given a Norvir tablet (100 mg ritonavir) orally, once without PPI pre-treatment and once after a three-day pre-treatment with the PPI esomeprazole. Blood samples were collected for eight hours to assess ritonavir absorption and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was used to determine the gastric and duodenal fluid volumes during the first three hours after administration of the tablet. The results confirmed that PPI intake reduced ritonavir plasma concentrations by 40%. The gastric residual volume and gastric fluid volume decreased by 41% and 44% respectively, while the duodenal fluid volume was reduced by 33%. These data suggest that the PPI esomeprazole lowers the available fluid volume for dissolution, which may limit the amount of ritonavir that can be absorbed. Although additional factors may play a role, the effect of PPI intake on the GI fluid volume should be considered when simulating the absorption of poorly soluble drugs like ritonavir in real-life conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Article
Application of the Gastrointestinal Simulator (GIS) Coupled with In Silico Modeling to Measure the Impact of Coca-Cola® on the Luminal and Systemic Behavior of Loratadine (BCS Class 2b)
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(6), 566; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12060566 - 18 Jun 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1011
Abstract
In the present work, we explored if Coca-Cola® had a beneficial impact on the systemic outcome of the weakly basic drug loratadine (Wal-itin®, immediate-release formulation, 10 mg, generic drug product). To map the contribution of underlying physiological variables that may [...] Read more.
In the present work, we explored if Coca-Cola® had a beneficial impact on the systemic outcome of the weakly basic drug loratadine (Wal-itin®, immediate-release formulation, 10 mg, generic drug product). To map the contribution of underlying physiological variables that may positively impact the intestinal absorption of loratadine, a multi-compartmental and dynamic dissolution device was built, namely the Gastrointestinal Simulator (GIS). The luminal behavior of one immediate-release (IR) tablet of 10 mg of loratadine was tested under four different fasted state test conditions in the GIS: (i) with 250 mL of water and applying a predetermined gastric half-life (t1/2,G) of 15 min; (ii) with 250 mL of water and applying a t1/2,G of 30 min; (iii) with 250 mL of Coca-Cola® and a t1/2,G of 15 min; (iv) with 250 mL of Coca-Cola® and a t1/2,G of 30 min. After initiating the experiments, solution concentrations and solubility were measured in the withdrawn samples, and pH was monitored. To address the impact of the present CO2 in Coca-Cola® on the disintegration time of the tablet, additional disintegration experiments were performed in a single-vessel applying tap water and sparkling water as dissolution media. These experiments demonstrated the faster disintegration of the tablet in the presence of sparkling water, as the present CO2 facilitates the release of the drug. The buffer capacity of Coca-Cola® in the presence of FaSSGF was 4-fold higher than the buffer capacity of tap water in the presence of FaSSGF. After performing the in vitro experiments, the obtained results were used as input for a two-compartmental pharmacokinetic (PK) modeling approach to predict the systemic concentrations. These simulations pointed out that (i) the present CO2 in Coca-Cola® is responsible for the enhancement in drug release and dissolution and that (ii) a delay in gastric emptying rate will sustain the supersaturated concentrations of loratadine in the intestinal regions of the GI tract, resulting in an enhanced driving force for intestinal absorption. Therefore, co-administration of loratadine with Coca-Cola® will highly likely result in an increased systemic exposure compared to co-administration of loratadine with tap water. The mechanistic insights that were obtained from this work will serve as a scientific basis to evaluate the impact of Coca-Cola® on the systemic exposure of weakly basic drugs for patients on acid-reducing agents in future work. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Article
Intrinsic Dissolution Rate Profiling of Poorly Water-Soluble Compounds in Biorelevant Dissolution Media
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(6), 493; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12060493 - 28 May 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1723
Abstract
The intrinsic dissolution rate (IDR) of active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) is a key property that aids in early drug development, especially selecting formulation strategies to improve dissolution and thereby drug absorption in the intestine. Here, we developed a robust method for rapid, medium [...] Read more.
The intrinsic dissolution rate (IDR) of active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) is a key property that aids in early drug development, especially selecting formulation strategies to improve dissolution and thereby drug absorption in the intestine. Here, we developed a robust method for rapid, medium throughput screening of IDR and established the largest IDR dataset in open literature to date that can be used for pharmaceutical computational modeling. Eighteen compounds with diverse physicochemical properties were studied in both fasted and fed state simulated intestinal fluids. Dissolution profiles were measured in small-scale experimental assays using compound suspensions or discs. IDR measurements were not solely linked to API solubility in either dissolution media. Multivariate data analysis revealed that IDR strongly depends on compound partitioning into bile salt and phospholipid micelles in the simulated intestinal fluids, a process that in turn is governed by API lipophilicity, hydrophobicity, and ionization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Article
Oral Administration System Based on Meloxicam Nanocrystals: Decreased Dose Due to High Bioavailability Attenuates Risk of Gastrointestinal Side Effects
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(4), 313; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12040313 - 01 Apr 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 933
Abstract
Meloxicam (MLX) is widely applied as a therapy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA); however, it takes far too long to reach its peak plasma concentration for a quick onset effect, and gastrointestinal toxicity has been observed in RA patients taking it. To solve these [...] Read more.
Meloxicam (MLX) is widely applied as a therapy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA); however, it takes far too long to reach its peak plasma concentration for a quick onset effect, and gastrointestinal toxicity has been observed in RA patients taking it. To solve these problems, we designed MLX solid nanoparticles (MLX-NPs) by the bead mill method and used them to prepare new oral formulations. The particle size of the MLX-NPs was approximately 20-180 nm, and they remained in the nano-size range for 1 month. The tmax of MLX-NPs was shorter than that of traditional MLX dispersions (MLX-TDs), and the intestinal penetration of MLX-NPs was significantly higher in comparison with MLX-TDs (P < 0.05). Caveolae-dependent endocytosis (CavME), clathrin-dependent endocytosis (CME), and micropinocytosis (MP) were found to be related to the high intestinal penetration of MLX-NPs. The area under the plasma MLX concentration-time curve (AUC) for MLX-NPs was 5-fold higher than that for MLX-TDs (P < 0.05), and the AUC in rats administered 0.05 mg/kg MLX-NPs were similar to rats administered the therapeutic dose of 0.2 mg/kg MLX-TDs. In addition, the anti-inflammatory effect of the MLX-NPs was also significantly higher than that of MLX-TDs at the corresponding dose (P < 0.05), and the therapeutic effect of 0.2 mg/kg MLX-TDs and 0.05 mg/kg MLX-NPs in adjuvant-induced arthritis (AA) rats showed no difference. Furthermore, the gastrointestinal lesions in AA rats treated repetitively with 0.05 mg/kg MLX-NPs were fewer than in rats receiving 0.2 mg/kg MLX-TDs (P < 0.05). In conclusion, we demonstrate that MLX solid nanoparticles allow a quick onset of therapeutic effect and that three endocytosis pathways, CavME, CME, and MP, are related to the high absorption of solid nanoparticles. In addition, we found that MLX solid nanoparticles make it possible to reduce the amount of orally administered drugs, and treatment with low doses of MLX-NPs allows RA therapy without intestinal ulcerogenic responses to MLX. These findings are useful for designing therapies for RA patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Review

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Review
Drug Disposition in the Lower Gastrointestinal Tract: Targeting and Monitoring
Pharmaceutics 2021, 13(2), 161; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics13020161 - 26 Jan 2021
Viewed by 904
Abstract
The increasing prevalence of colonic diseases calls for a better understanding of the various colonic drug absorption barriers of colon-targeted formulations, and for reliable in vitro tools that accurately predict local drug disposition. In vivo relevant incubation conditions have been shown to better [...] Read more.
The increasing prevalence of colonic diseases calls for a better understanding of the various colonic drug absorption barriers of colon-targeted formulations, and for reliable in vitro tools that accurately predict local drug disposition. In vivo relevant incubation conditions have been shown to better capture the composition of the limited colonic fluid and have resulted in relevant degradation and dissolution kinetics of drugs and formulations. Furthermore, drug hurdles such as efflux transporters and metabolising enzymes, and the presence of mucus and microbiome are slowly integrated into drug stability- and permeation assays. Traditionally, the well characterized Caco-2 cell line and the Ussing chamber technique are used to assess the absorption characteristics of small drug molecules. Recently, various stem cell-derived intestinal systems have emerged, closely mimicking epithelial physiology. Models that can assess microbiome-mediated drug metabolism or enable coculturing of gut microbiome with epithelial cells are also increasingly explored. Here we provide a comprehensive overview of the colonic physiology in relation to drug absorption, and review colon-targeting formulation strategies and in vitro tools to characterize colonic drug disposition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Review
Food Effects on Oral Drug Absorption: Application of Physiologically-Based Pharmacokinetic Modeling as a Predictive Tool
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(7), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12070672 - 17 Jul 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1377
Abstract
The bioavailability of an orally administered small molecule is often dictated by drug-specific physicochemical characteristics and is influenced by many biological processes. For example, in fed or fasted conditions, the transit time within the gastrointestinal tract can vary, confounding the ability to predict [...] Read more.
The bioavailability of an orally administered small molecule is often dictated by drug-specific physicochemical characteristics and is influenced by many biological processes. For example, in fed or fasted conditions, the transit time within the gastrointestinal tract can vary, confounding the ability to predict the oral absorption. As such, the effects of food on the pharmacokinetics of compounds in the various biopharmaceutics classification system (BCS) classes need to be assessed. The consumption of food leads to physiological changes, including fluctuations in the gastric and intestinal pH, a delay in gastric emptying, an increased bile secretion, and an increased splanchnic and hepatic blood flow. Despite the significant impact of a drug’s absorption and dissolution, food effects have not been fully studied and are often overlooked. Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models can be used to mechanistically simulate a compound’s pharmacokinetics under fed or fasted conditions, while integrating drug properties such as solubility and permeability. This review discusses the PBPK models published in the literature predicting the food effects, the models’ strengths and shortcomings, as well as future steps to mitigate the current knowledge gap. We observed gaps in knowledge which limits the ability of PBPK models to predict the negative food effects and food effects in the pediatric population. Overall, the further development of PBPK models to predict food effects will provide a mechanistic basis to understand a drug’s behavior in fed and fasted conditions, and will help enable the drug development process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Review
In Vitro Dissolution and in Silico Modeling Shortcuts in Bioequivalence Testing
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(1), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12010045 - 04 Jan 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1405
Abstract
Purpose: To review in vitro testing and simulation platforms that are in current use to predict in vivo performances of generic products as well as other situations to provide evidence for biowaiver and support drug formulations development. Methods: Pubmed and Google Scholar databases [...] Read more.
Purpose: To review in vitro testing and simulation platforms that are in current use to predict in vivo performances of generic products as well as other situations to provide evidence for biowaiver and support drug formulations development. Methods: Pubmed and Google Scholar databases were used to review published literature over the past 10 years. The terms used were “simulation AND bioequivalence” and “modeling AND bioequivalence” in the title field of databases, followed by screening, and then reviewing. Results: A total of 22 research papers were reviewed. Computer simulation using software such as GastroPlus™, PK-Sim® and SimCyp® find applications in drug modeling. Considering the wide use of optimization for in silico predictions to fit observed data, a careful review of publications is required to validate the reliability of these platforms. For immediate release (IR) drug products belonging to the Biopharmaceutics Classification System (BCS) classes I and III, difference factor (ƒ1) and similarity factor (ƒ2) are calculated from the in vitro dissolution data of drug formulations to support biowaiver; however, this method can be more discriminatory and may not be useful for all dissolution profiles. Conclusions: Computer simulation platforms need to improve their mechanistic physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling, and if prospectively validated within a small percentage of error from the observed clinical data, they can be valuable tools in bioequivalence (BE) testing and formulation development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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Other

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Erratum
Erratum: Hens, B.; et al. Application of the Gastrointestinal Simulator (GIS) Coupled with In Silico Modeling to Measure the Impact of Coca-Cola® on the Luminal and Systemic Behavior of Loratadine (BCS Class 2b). Pharmaceutics, 2020, 12, 566
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(12), 1137; https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12121137 - 25 Nov 2020
Viewed by 507
Abstract
The authors make the following correction to this paper after the final publication of the work [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanistic In Vitro and In Silico Modeling of Oral Drug Absorption)
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