Physiologically Based Biopharmaceutics Modeling of Regional and Colon Absorption in Dogs.Mol Pharm. 2021 04 05; 18(4):1699-1710.MP
Colon absorption is a key determinant for the successful development of modified-release (MR) formulations, and the risk that colon absorption may limit the in vivo performance of an MR product can be assessed early by various in vitro tests or by preclinical in vivo regional absorption studies in dogs. Mechanistic physiologically based biopharmaceutics modeling (PBBM) is becoming increasingly accepted to predict in vivo performance and guide formulation development; however, no evaluation of the ability to predict colon absorption has been performed. The purpose of this study was to investigate if regional and colon absorption of drugs in dogs could be predicted with sufficient accuracy using PBBM to enable the replacement of in vivo dog studies in the early assessment of colon absorption limitation risks. This was done by predicting the regional and colon absorption and plasma exposure of 14 drugs after administration to the dog colon according to an a priori approach using the in silico absorption models GI-Sim and GastroPlus. Predictive performance was primarily assessed by comparing observed and predicted plasma concentration-time profiles, AUC0-t, and the relative bioavailability in the colon (Frel,colon) as compared to an oral/duodenal reference. Trends in dependency of prediction performance on predicted fraction absorbed, permeability, and solubility/dissolution rate were also investigated. For GI-Sim, the absolute average fold error (AAFE) values for AUC0-t and Frel,colon were within a 2-fold prediction error for both solutions (1.88 and 1.51, respectively) and suspensions (1.58 and 1.99, respectively). For GastroPlus, the AAFE values for AUC0-t and Frel,colon were outside the set 2-fold prediction error limit for accurate predictions for both solutions (3.63 and 2.98, respectively) and suspensions (2.94 and 2.09, respectively). No trends for over- or underprediction were observed for GI-Sim, whereas GastroPlus showed a slight trend for underprediction of both AUC0-t and Frel,colon for compounds with low permeability. In addition, regional differences in the plasma profiles were qualitatively predicted in the majority of cases for both software. Despite the differences in prediction performance, both models can be considered to predict regional differences in absorption as well as AUC0-t and Frel,colon with acceptable accuracy in an early development setting. The results of this study indicate that it is acceptable to replace in vivo regional absorption studies in dogs with the evaluated models as a method for the early assessment of the risk for colon absorption limitation of MR drug product candidates.