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1.  Prediction of dissolution-absorption relationships from a continuous dissolution/Caco-2 system 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(2):27-38.
The objectives were 1) to design a continuous dissolution Caco-2 system to predict the dissolution-absorption relationships for fast and slow dissolving formulations of piroxicam, metoprolol tartrate, and ranitidine HCl, and compare the predicted relationships with observed relationships from clinical studies; 2) to estimate the effect of croscarmellose sodium on ranitidine dissolution-absorption relationships; and 3) to estimate the effect of solubilizing agents on piroxicam dissolution-absorption relationships. A continuous dissolution/Caco-2 system was constructed from a dissolution apparatus and a diffusion cell, such that drug dissolution and permeation across a Caco-2 monolayer would occur sequentially and simultaneously. The continuous system generally matched observed dissolution-absorption relationships from clinical studies. For example, the system successfully predicted the slow metoprolol and slow ranitidiine formulations to be permeation-rate-limited. The system predicted the slow piroxicam formulation to be dissolution-rate-limited, and the fast piroxicam formulation to be permeation-rate-limited, in spite of piroxicam’s high permeability and low solubility. Additionally, the system indicated croscarmellose sodium enhanced ranitidine permeability and predicted solubilizing agents to not modulate permeability. These results suggest a dissolution/Caco-2 system to be an experimentally based tool that may predict dissolution-absorption relationships from oral solid dosage forms, and hence the relative contributions of dissolution and permeation to oral drug absorption kinetics.
PMCID: PMC2761118  PMID: 11741200
2.  Empirical versus mechanistic modelling: Comparison of an artificial neural network to a mechanistically based model for quantitative structure pharmacokinetic relationships of a homologous series of barbiturates 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(4):5-13.
The aim of the current study was to compare the predictive performance of a mechanistically based model and an empirical artificial neural network (ANN) model to describe the relationship between the tissue-to-unbound plasma concentration ratios (Kpu's) of 14 rat tissues and the lipophilicity (LogP) of a series of nine 5-n-alkyl-5-ethyl barbituric acids. The mechanistic model comprised the water content, binding capacity, number of the binding sites, and binding association constant of each tissue. A backpropagation ANN with 2 hidden layers (33 neurons in the first layer, 9 neurons in the second) was used for the comparison. The network was trained by an algorithm with adaptive momentum and learning rate, programmed using the ANN Toolbox of MATLAB. The predictive performance of both models was evaluated using a leave-one-out procedure and computation of both the mean prediction error (ME, showing the prediction bias) and the mean squared prediction error (MSE, showing the prediction accuracy). The ME of the mechanistic model was 18% (range, 20 to 57%), indicating a tendency for overprediction; the MSE is 32% (range, 6 to 104%). The ANN had almost no bias: the ME was 2% (range, 36 to 64%) and had greater precision than the mechanistic model, MSE 18% (range, 4 to 70%). Generally, neither model appeared to be a significantly better predictor of the Kpu's in the rat.
PMCID: PMC2751347  PMID: 11741213
3.  A novel in vitro release method for submicron-sized dispersed systems 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):32-40.
Sink conditions are often violated when using conventional release methods for dispersed systems. A novel reverse dialysis bag method was designed to overcome this problem. Model drug transport rates from submicron emulsions obtained using the conventional diffusion cell method and this novel method were compared. In the side-by-side diffusion cell method, emulsions were placed in the donor chamber and surfactant/buffer solutions in the receiver chamber. In the novel dialysis bag method, emulsions were diluted infinitely in the donor phase and surfactant/buffer solutions were placed in the receiver phase (dialysis bags). Slow release rates and linear release profiles were obtained using the side-by-side diffusion cell method apparently due to limited model drug solubility in the donor chamber resulting in violation of sink conditions. Biphasic release profiles were obtained using the dialysis bag method apparently due to an initial rapid release of free and micellar solubilized model drug from the donor to the receiver chambers followed by slow release from the oil droplets. Using both release methods, an initial increase and latter decrease in release rates were observed with increase in surfactant concentration. The initial increase was considered to be due to a decrease in the model drug oil-in-water partition coefficients and the subsequent decrease in release rates was due to micellar shape change (spheres to rods) causing a decrease in diffusion rates. Sink conditions were violated using the side-by-side diffusion cell method but were maintained in the dialysis bag method since emulsions were diluted infinitely in the donor phase.
PMCID: PMC2761125  PMID: 11741207
dialysis bag; submicron emulsions; in vitro release; dispersed systems; sink conditions
4.  Activity and kinetics of dissociation and transfer of amphotericin B from a novel delivery form 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):21-31.
Recently it has been demonstrated that moderate heat treatment of Amphotericin B/deoxycholate solutions (HAmB-DOC) leads to a therapeutically interesting supramolecular rearrangement that can be observed by significant changes in light scattering, CD, and absorbance. In this study, we continue the investigation of the physical properties of this new form by evaluating the activity and kinetics of dissociation and dispersion of HAmB-DOC and AmB-DOC in saline, serum, and in model mammalian or fungal lipid biomimetic membrane vesicles. Stopped-flow spectrophotometry combined with singular value decomposition (SVD) and global analysis were used to resolve the components of this process. The dissociation kinetics for both states are complex, requiring multiexponential fits, vet in most cases SVD indicates only two significant changing species representing the monomer and the aggregate. The kinetic mechanism could involve dissociation of monomers from coexisting spectroscopically similar but structurally distinct aggregates or sequential rearrangements in supramolecular structure of aggregates. Rate constants and amplitudes of dissociation from aggregates to monomer in buffer, whole serum, 10% cholesterol, and ergosterol membrane vesicles are generally greater for AmB-DOC, demonstrating its greater kinetic instability. In addition, at comparable low concentrations, HAmB-DOC and AmB-DOC are nearly equally active at promoting cation selective permeability in ergosterol-containing membranes; however, HAmB-DOC is much less active against mammalian mimetic cholesterol-containing vesicles, despite a higher level of self-association, supporting previous observations that there exists a specific “toxic aggregate” structure.
PMCID: PMC2761124  PMID: 11741206
5.  Kinetic modeling of plasmid DNA degradation in rat plasma 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):15-20.
A major obstacle in gene delivery is the transport of intact plasmid DNA (pDNA) to target sites. We sought to investigate the kinetic processes underlying the degradation of pDNA in a rat plasma model, as this is one of the main components responsible for the clearance of pDNA after intravenous administration. We further sought to construct a complete kinetic model to describe the degradation of all three topoforms (supercoiled, open circular, and linear) of pDNA in a rat plasma model. Supercoiled pDNA was incubated in isolated rat plasma at 37°C in vitro. At various time points, the plasma was assayed by electrophoresis for the amounts of supercoiled, open circular, and full-length linear pDNA remaining. The calculated amounts remaining were fit to linear differential equations describing this process. In this model, pDNA degradation is considered to be a unidirectional process, with supercoiled degrading to open circular and then to the linear topoform. The calculated kinetic parameters suggested that supercoiled pDNA degrades in rat plasma with a half-life of 1.2 minutes, open circular pDNA degrades with a half-life of 21 minutes, and linear pDNA degrades with a half-life of 11 minutes. Complexation of pDNA with liposomes resulted in a portion of the supercoiled plasmid remaining detectable through 5.5 hours.
PMCID: PMC2761123  PMID: 11741205
6.  Comparative studies to determine the selective inhibitors for P-glycoprotein and cytochrome P 4503A4 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(4):14-19.
It has been suggested that cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) and MDR1 P-glycoprotein (P-gp) act synergistically to limit the bioavailability of orally administered agents. In order to determine the relative role of these proteins, it is essential to identify a selective inhibitor for either P-gp or CYP3A4. In the present investigation, comparative studies were performed to examine the effect of inhibitors on the function of these proteins. The IC50 of P-gp function, determined by examining the inhibition of the transcellular transport of vinblastine across Caco-2 monolayers, was in the order PSC833 ≪ ketoconazole, verapamil ≪ N-(2(R)-hydroxy-1(S)-indanyl)-5-(2(S)-(1,1-dimethylethylaminocarbonyl)-4-(furo(2,3-b)pyridin-5-yl) methyl)piperazin-1-yl)-4(S)-hydroxy-2(R)-phenylmethylpentanamide (L-754,394). In contrast, the IC50 of CYP3A4 function, determined by examining the inhibition of the metabolism of midazolam by intestinal and liver microsomes, was in the order L-754,384 ≪ketoconazole≪ PSC 833 and verapamil. The ratio of IC50 for P-gp to that for CYP3A4 was more than 200 for L-754,394,60 ∼ 150 for ketoconazole, 1.5 for verapamil, and 0.05 for PSC 833. Collectively, it was demonstrated that PSC 833 and L-754,394 can be used as selective inhibitors of P-gp and CYP3A4, respectively.
PMCID: PMC2751348  PMID: 11741214
7.  A short-term (accelerated release) approach to evaluate peptide release from PLGA depot formulations 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):1-6.
An accelerated method to evaluate peptide release from poly(dl-lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) depot formulations in short time is described. Peptide-loaded microspheres were made from hydrophilic 50∶50 PLGA by a dispersionsolyent extraction technique, and peptide release was studied at 37°C and at higher temperatures in various media. For all accelerated conditions, release was faster at temperatures above the glass transition, Tg, of the host polymer. Complete release of peptide from 8600 MW PLGA was achieved in 35 hours at 50°C in buffered and nonbuffered media containing 0.5% polyvinyl alcohol (PVA). Type of release media and concentration of PVA influenced the release profiles. A PVA concentration of 0.1 to 0.5% was found to prevent aggregation of microspheres at higher temperatures, with an increase in release at the higher PVA concentration. Peptide release was associated with a reduction of pH of the releasing media and increased mass loss. Complete peptide release at pH 4 from 8.6 kd and 28 kd PLGA at 50 and 60°C occurred within 30–40 hours and correlated well with the real-time release at 37°C and pH 7.0. At the higher molecular weight, a slightly longer accelerated release time and higher temperature were required to correlate with the real-time release. The data suggest that by optimization of release conditions such as temperature, surfactant concentration, buffer component, and pH, an accelerated study could be employed to evaluate depot formulations for a given polymer type.
PMCID: PMC2761121  PMID: 11741203
peptide loaded microspheres; depot formulation; accelerated release; elevated temperature; PLGA
8.  Determination of membrane protein glycation in diabetic tissue 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(4):27-33.
Diabetes-associated hyperglycemia causes glycation of proteins at reactive amino groups, which can adversely affect protein function Although the effects of glycation on soluble proteins are well characterized, there is no information regarding membrane-associated proteins, mainly because of the lack of reproducible methods to determine protein glycation in vivo. The current study was conducted to establish such a method and to compare the glycation levels of membrane-associated proteins derived from normal and diabetic tissue. We present a detailed sample preparation protocol based on the borohydride-periodate assay, modified to allow manipulation of animal tissue. Assay noise associated with extraction protocols and nonproteinaceous buffer components was eliminated by the using 3-[(3-cholamidopropyl) dimethylammonio]-1-propanesulfonate (CHAPS) as a membrane detergent, applying desalting columns, and including a protein precipitation step. The glycation level of membrane proteins from diabetic rats is elevated to 4.89 nmol/mg protein (standard deviation [SD] 0.48) compared with normoglycemic control tissue (2.23 nmol/mg protein, SD 0.64). This result is consistent with and correlated to the total glycated hemoglobin levels in diabetic and normoglycemic rats. Using<100 μg protein, the described methods allow further study of protein glycation effects on the function of individual transporter proteins and the role of these modifications in diabetes.
PMCID: PMC2751350  PMID: 11741216
Glycation; Membrane Protein; Diabetes
9.  Receptor-targeted gene delivery viafolate-conjugated polyethylenimine 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(4):20-26.
A novel synthetic gene transfer vector was evaluated for tumor cell-specific targeted gene delivery. The folate receptor is a tumor marker overexpressed in more than 90% of ovarian carcinomas and large percentages of other human tumors. Folic acid is a high affinity ligand for the folate receptor that retains its binding affinity upon derivatization via its gamma carboxyl. Folate conjugation, therefore, presents a potential strategy for tumor-selective targeted gene delivery. In the current study, we investigated a series of folate conjugates of the cationic polymer polyethylenimine (PEI) for potential use in gene delivery. A plasmid containing a luciferase reporter gene (pCMV-Luc) and the folate receptor expressing human oral cancer KB cells were used to monitor gene transfer efficiency in vitro. Transfection activity of polyplexes containing unmodified polyethylenimine was highly dependent on the positive to negative charge (or the N/P) ratio. Folate directly attached to PEI did not significantly alter the transfection activity of its DNA complexes compared to unmodified PEI. Modification of PEI by polyethyleneglycol (PEG) led to a partial inhibition of gene delivery compared to unmodified PEI. Attaching folates to the distal termini of PEG-modified PEI greatly enhanced the transfection activity of the corresponding DNA complexes over the polyplexes containing PEG-modified PEI. The enhancements were observed at all N/P ratios tested and could be blocked partially by co-incubation with 200 μM free folic acid, which suggested the involvement of folate receptor in gene transfer. Targeted vectors based on the folate-PEG-PEI conjugate are potentially useful as simple tumor-specific vehicles of therapeutic genes.
PMCID: PMC2751349  PMID: 11741215
10.  Monoamine oxidase inhibitory properties of some benzazoles: Structure-; Activity relationships 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(4):1-4.
Benzazoles containing two or three nitrogen atoms were screened for their inhibitory activity toward monoamine oxidases MAO-A and MAO-B. In order to clarify the mechanism of interaction of these compounds with the enzyme, their electronic structure was calculated at the ab initio level and the influence of lipophilicity on activity was investigated. The mode of binding of benzazoles to MAO-B appears different from that of previously investigated heterocycles.
PMCID: PMC2751346  PMID: 11741212
11.  Function and immunolocalization of overexpressed human intestinal H+/peptide cotransporter in adenovirus-transduced Caco-2 cells 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):41-49.
Purpose. To determine the localization of the human intestinal H+/peptide cotransporter (hPepT1) and its function in intestinal epithelial cells after adenoviral transduction. Methods. Caco-2 cells grown on Transwell membrane filters were transduced with a recombinant replication-deficient adenovirus carrying the hPepT1 gene. The transport of Gly-Sar across both apical and basolateral membranes was measured after adenoviral transduction as a function of pH, temperature, inhibitors, and substrate concentration. The localization of hPepT1 was examined by immunocytochemistry using confocal laser scanning microscopy. Results. The apical-to-basolateral and basolateral-to-apical transport of Gly-Sar in Caco-2 cells after viral transduction was increased 3.3 and 3.5-fold, respectively. The similar magnitude of Gly-Sar permeability from either direction indicates involvement of identical transport pathways in both membranes. This was further confirmed by immunocytochemistry showing that hPepT1 was localized in the apical and basolateral membrane of Caco-2 cells after adenoviral transduction. In both directions, Gly-Sar transport was enhanced in the presence of a pH gradient. In addition, the basolateral-to-apical Gly-Sar transport was dependent on temperature, multiplicity of infection (MOI), and Gly-Sar concentration. It was inhibited in the presence of excess Gly-Pro and cephalexin. Conclusions. Caco-2 cell monolayers represent an appropriate model to study gene expression in intestinal epithelial cells. Transport characteristics of Gly-Sar from the basolateral to the apical side in adenovirus-transduced Caco-2 cells are in agreement with those from the apical to the basolateral side, indicating that hPepT1 is also expressed in the basolateral membrane and displays a similar level of transport enhancement after adenovirus mediated hPepT1 gene expression.
PMCID: PMC2761126  PMID: 11741208
hPepT1; Gene expression; Adenovirus; Caco-2 cells; Confocal microscopy
12.  Reversed phase-high performance liquid chromatographic method to measure migration of semivolatile compound, vanillin, in ipratropium bromide inhalation solution 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):66-69.
Ipratropium bromide, a bronchodilator, is used as an inhalation solution. Commercial ipratropium bromide solution products are packaged in low-density polyethylene (LDPE) vials, through which semivolatile compounds are reported to migrate. In this article, a specific reversed phase-high performance liquid chromatographic method to assay vanillin, a semivolatile compound, in ipratropium bromide solution is described. The method was validated for a concentration range for vanillin from 30 ng/mL to 1,600 ng/mL.
Migration of vanillin was assessed in two commercial preparations, ATROVENT® (ipratropium bromide) Inhalation Solution packaged in a secondary foil pouch and a generic ipratropium bromide inhalation solution packaged in a carton. Levels of vanillin detected in ATROVENT® after 6 months of storage at 40° C and 75% RH were below the limit of detection (11 ng/mL). Significant migration of vanillin was observed after 1 month in the generic product and reached 165 ng/mL to 999 ng/mL in three months under the same storage conditions.
It is concluded that this method can be readily used to measure vanillin in commercial preparations of ipratropium bromide inhalation solution. The results strongly indicate that a protective secondary packaging material is critical in preventing migration of semivolatile compounds. This study result is in agreement with the FDA's recommendation to consider even the secondary packaging components as potential sources of contamination and the use of an overwrap (typically aluminum foil) to decrease the overall permeability.
PMCID: PMC2761129  PMID: 11741211
13.  Inhibition of carboxyethylphosphoramide mustard formation from 4-hydroxycyclophosphamide by carmustine 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):58-65.
It has been reported that the toxicity of carmustine (BCNU) cyclophosphamide (CY)/etoposide regimen (when BCNU is split into 4 doses) is less than that of BCNU/CY/cisplatin regimen (when the same amount of BCNU is administered as a single dose). We hypothesized that this might in part be due to the inhibition of aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 (ALDH1) by BCNU or its degradation product, 2-chloroethyl isocyanate, which is likely to be more pronounced at the higher BCNU dose. The effects of BCNU and 2-chloroethyl isocyanate on the formation of carboxyethylphosphoramide mustard (CEPM) from 4-hydroxycyclophosphamide (HCY) was evaluated in human liver cytosol incubations. We found that CEPM formation from HCY was inhibited strongly by BCNU and weakly by 2-chloroethyl isocyanate. The mechanism of inhibition of ALDH1 activity by BCNU was elucidated using indole-3-acetaldehyde (IAL) as the probe substrate in ALDH1 prepared from human erythrocytes. BCNU was a competitive inhibitor of ALDH1 activity with a Ki of 1.95 μM. The inhibition was independent of preincubation time and reversible by dialysis. The calculated %inhibition of ALDH1 activity by acrolein and BCNU in patients receiving BCNU in 4 split doses with CY was 81%, and it increased to 92% in single dose BCNU regimen. Thus, the calculation indicates that residual operating ALDH1 activity is halved in the presence of single-dose BCNU compared to split-dose BCNU. The inhibition of ALDH1 may contribute to the observed lower incidence of toxicity when BCNU was split into 4 doses compared with single dose and coadministered with CY although dose-dependent effects of BCNU on glutathione and glutathione reductase are also likely to contribute.
PMCID: PMC2761128  PMID: 11741210
cyclophosphamide carmustine ALDH1; 4-hydroxycyclophosphamide alkylator
14.  Evaluation of polyoxyethylene homopolymers for buccal bioadhesive drug delivery device formulations 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):50-57.
Our objective was to evaluate the application of polyoxyethylene homopolymers in buccal bioadhesive drug (BBD) delivery device formulations. The bioadhesive strength of four different molecular weight (MW) polyoxyethylene polymers was measured by Instronâ tensile tester using glass plate and bovine sublingual tissue as substrate surfaces. Several BBD device formulations containing polyoxyethylene polymer (MW 7,000,000) were prepared by direct compression and compression molding processes. The prepared BBD devices were evaluated for their elasticity, in vitro adhesion and drug release characteristics. The in vivo bioadhesion characteristics of a placebo compression molded device were examined in 3 adult healthy male beagle dogs. The bioadhesive strength of polyoxyethylene polymers appeared to be directly related to their molecular weights. When bovine sublingual mucosa or a glass plate was used as model mucosal substrate surface, the rank order of bioadhesive strength of different molecular weight polyoxyethylene polymers was similar. The bioadhesive strength of devices prepared by the compression molding process was greater than those prepared by direct compression, but the kinetics of drug release were independent of the process used for the preparation of the devices. The drug release and the bioadhesive strength of the similarly prepared device formulations appeared to be dependent on the drug:polymer ratios. The elasticity of the BBD devices prepared by compression molding was improved by the inclusion of polyisobutylene polymer in the formulations. When adhered to the oral cavity of the dogs, the compression molded placebo BBD device exhibited adhesion for at least 4 hours and appeared to show no signs of local irritation. In conclusion, BBD devices containing polyoxyethylene polymer (MW 7,000,000) can be prepared by direct compression or compression molding process in order to provide controlled drug release to the oral cavity while maintaining appropriate bioadhesive characteristics.
PMCID: PMC2761127  PMID: 11741209
polyox; bioadhesion; compression molding; buccal patch; polyethyleneoxide
15.  Kinetics of hallmark biochemical changes in paclitaxel-induced apoptosis 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(3):7-14.
Apoptosis is associated with cascades of biochemical changes, including caspase activation, cleavage of poly-ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP), and fragmentation of genomic DNA. Knowledge of the kinetics of these changes in drug-induced apoptosis is important for designing pharmacodynamic studies. We have shown that the slow manifestation of apoptosis contributes to the delayed pharmacological effects of paclitaxel (Cancer Res. 58:2141–2148, 1998). The present study examined the timing of the biochemical changes in paclitaxel-induced apoptosis in human prostate PC3 cancer cells. After treatment with 20 nM paclitaxel, the fraction of cells that detached from the culture flask increased with time to reach 68% at the end of the 96-hour experiment. In contrast, the control samples showed <1% detachment. The attached and detached paclitaxel-treated cells showed different biochemical properties. The detached cells exhibited the full spectrum of apoptotic changes, whereas the attached cells only showed activation of caspase-3-like proteases but not PARP cleavage, DNA fragmentation, nor release of DNA fragments to the cytoplasm. Activation of caspases in the attached cells was several-fold lower and occurred at a later time (ie, 24 vs 12 hours) compared to the detached cells. In the detached cells, caspase activation was first detected at 12 hours and peaked at 36 hours, whereas PARP cleavage was first detected at 24 hours and was completed prior to 72 hours. In contrast, the extent of internucleosomal DNA fragmentation and the release of DNA-histone complex to the cytoplasm (both were first detected at 24 hours) were cumulative over time up to the last time point of 96 hours. In summary, in paclitaxel-induced apoptosis, caspase activation was followed with a 12-hour lag time by PARP cleavage, internucleosomal DNA fragmentation, and release of DNA-histone complex to the cytoplasm. There was no detectable lag time between PARP cleavage and DNA fragmentation. The observation that only the detached cells but not the attached cells showed the full spectrum of apoptotic changes suggests that detachment is either a part of the initiation execution phases of apoptosis and or is required for their completion.
PMCID: PMC2761122  PMID: 11741204
paclitaxel; apoptosis; anoikis; caspase activation; PARP cleavage; DNA fragmentation
16.  A method to monitor DNA transfer during transfection 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(2):46-52.
This report describes a method for monitoring the transfer of DNA during transfection. This method involves random labeling of plasmid DNA with fluorescein-12-dUTP, flow cytometric detection and sorting of the fluorescent transfected cells, and laser confocal fluorescence microscopic determination of the intracellular location of the plasmid DNA. By this method, >95% of the sorted cells were labeled, indicating a >95% specificity of the sorting procedure. The sorted cells were viable, as indicated by their ability to exclude trypan blue dye (>98% cells excluded the dye) and to maintain cell growth. The results of the kinetics of the Lipofectin transfection technology show that the fraction of the cells that internalized plasmid DNA increased from 10% at 1 hr after initiation of the transfection procedures to 18% at 3 hr. This method does not require protein expression, does not require the use of selection pressure such as drug treatment to isolate the cells that internalized DNA, and can be used to study the early events of DNA transfection.
PMCID: PMC2761120  PMID: 11741202
transfection; cell sorting; fluorescein-labeled DNA; lipofectin; confocal microscopy
17.  Design and synthesis of the CB1 selective cannabinoid antagonist AM281: A potential human SPECT ligand 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(2):39-45.
In the search for a radioligand capable of imaging cannabinoid CB1 receptors in the living human brain by SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography), N-(morpholin-4-yl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-5-(4-iodophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide (AM281) was synthesized. This compound is an analog of the potent, CB1 receptor selective antagonist SR141716A [N-(piperidin-1-yl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide]. AM281 bound to brain and spleen membrane preparations (CB1 and CB2 receptors, respectively) with Ki values of 12 nM and 4200 nM, respectively. AM281 also inhibited the response of guinea-pig small intestine preparation to a cannabinoid receptor agonist. Thus, AM281 behaves as a CB1 receptor selective antagonist. Methods for the rapid, high-yield synthesis and purification of [123I]AM281 were developed, and transaxially reconstructed brain SPECT images obtained after continuous infusion of [123I]AM281 in baboons. Thus [123I]AM281 may be suitable for imaging CB1 receptors in humans.
PMCID: PMC2761119  PMID: 11741201
AM281; cannabinoid CB1 receptor; cannabinoid receptor antagonist; CB1 selective ligand; SPECT image
18.  The venus flytrap of periplasmic binding proteins: An ancient protein module present in multiple drug receptors 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(2):7-26.
Located between the inner and outer membranes of Gram-negative bacteria, periplasmic binding proteins (PBPs) scavenge or sense diverse nutrients in the environment by coupling to transporters or chemotaxis receptors in the inner membrane. Their three-dimensional structures have been deduced in atomic detail with the use of X-ray crystallography, both in the free and liganded state. PBPs consist of two large lobes that close around the bound ligand, resembling a Venus flytrap. This architecture is reiterated in transcriptional regulators, such as the lac repressors. In the process of evolution, genes encoding the PBPs have fused with genes for integral membrane proteins. Thus, diverse mammalian receptors contain extracellular ligand binding domains that are homologous to the PBPs; these include glutamate/glycine-gated ion channels such as the NMDA receptor, G protein-coupled receptors, including metabotropic glutamate, GABA-B, calcium sensing, and pheromone receptors, and atrial natriuretic peptide-guanylate cyclase receptors. Many of these receptors are promising drug targets. On the basis of homology to PBPs and a recently resolved crystal structure of the extracellular binding domain of a glutamate receptor ion channel, it is possible to construct three-dimensional models of their ligand binding domains. Together with the extensive information available on the mechanism of ligand binding to PBPs, such models can serve as a guide in drug discovery.
PMCID: PMC2761117  PMID: 11741199
19.  Glycylsarcosine uptake in rabbit renal brush border membrane vesicles isolated from outer cortex or outer medulla: Evidence for heterogeneous distribution of oligopeptide transporters 
AAPS PharmSci  1999;1(2):1-6.
Studies were initially performed in rabbit brush border membrane vesicles (BBMV) prepared from whole cortex plus outer medulla. In these studies using combined tissues, two distinct peptide/H+ transport systems were found for glycylsarcosine (GlySar) uptake, with one representing a low-affinity/high-capacity system (Vm1=974 pmol/mg/10 sec and Km1=4819 μM) and the other a high-affinity/low-capacity system (Vm2=220 pmol/mg/10 sec and Km2=96 μM). Thus, under linear conditions, the high-affinity transporter accounted for about 92% of the total transport of dipeptide. To better define the regional heterogeneity of peptide transporter activity in kidney, subsequent studies were performed in vesicles prepared from separately harvested outer cortical and outer medullary tissue. In BBMV studies prepared from outer cortex, two saturable components were revealed for GlySar transport (low-affinity/high-capacity transport system: Vm1=1921 pmol/mg/10 sec and Km1=11714 μM; high-affinity/low-capacity transport system: Vm2=143 pmol/mg/10 sec and Km2=138 μM). However, in BBMV studies prepared from outer medulla, only one saturable component was revealed for GlySar transport (high-affinity/low-capacity transport system: Vm2=168 pmol/mg/10 sec and Km2=230 μM). Overall, these studies support the contention that peptides are handled sequentially in kidney (ie, first by low-affinity transporter PEPT1, and then by high-affinity transporter PEPT2) and that PEPT2 is primarily responsible for the renal reabsorption of peptides and peptidomimetics.
PMCID: PMC2761116  PMID: 11741198
Renal peptide heterogeneity; Low-affinity transporter; High-affinity transporter; Glycylsarcosine; Brush border membrane vesicles

Results 1-19 (19)