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Articles by Uwe Christians in JoVE

 JoVE Medicine

Quantification of the Immunosuppressant Tacrolimus on Dried Blood Spots Using LC-MS/MS

1iC42 Clinical Research and Development, University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, 2Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, 3Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center of Drug Evaluation Research - Office of Generic Drugs, 4Transplant Clinical Research, University of Cincinnati

JoVE 52424

Other articles by Uwe Christians on PubMed

Comparison of the Effects of Cyclosporin a on the Metabolism of Perfused Rat Brain Slices During Normoxia and Hypoxia

Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism : Official Journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism. Mar, 2002  |  Pubmed ID: 11891440

The authors evaluated and compared the metabolic effects of cyclosporin A in the rat brain during normoxia and hypoxia/reperfusion. Ex vivo 31P magnetic resonance spectroscopy experiments based on perfused rat brain slices showed that under normoxic conditions, 500 microg/L cyclosporin A significantly reduced mitochondrial energy metabolism (nucleotide triphosphate, 83 +/- 9% of controls; phosphocreatine, 69 +/- 9%) by inhibition of the Krebs cycle (glutamate, 77 +/- 5%) and oxidative phosphorylation (NAD+, 65 +/- 14%) associated with an increased generation of reactive oxygen species (285 +/- 78% of control). However, the same cyclosporin A concentration (500 microg/L) was found to be the most efficient concentration to inhibit the hypoxia-induced mitochondrial release of Ca2+ in primary rat hippocampal cells with cytosolic Ca2+ concentrations not significantly different from normoxic controls. Addition of 500 microg/L cyclosporin A to the perfusion medium protected high-energy phosphate metabolism (nucleotide triphosphate, 11 +/- 15% of control vs. 35 +/- 9% with 500 microg/L cyclosporin A) and the intracellular pH (6.2 +/- 0.1 control vs. 6.6 +/- 0.1 with cyclosporin A) in rat brain slices during 30 minutes of hypoxia. Results indicate that cyclosporin A simultaneously decreases and protects cell glucose and energy metabolism. Whether the overall effect was a reduction or protection of cell energy metabolism depended on the concentrations of both oxygen and cyclosporin A in the buffer solution.

Close Association Between the Reduction in Myocardial Energy Metabolism and Infarct Size: Dose-response Assessment of Cyclosporine

The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. Sep, 2002  |  Pubmed ID: 12183671

Cyclosporine protects the heart against ischemia/reperfusion injury, but its effect on cardiac metabolism is largely unknown. We assessed cyclosporine-induced metabolic changes in the rat heart prior to occlusion using magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and correlated effects with infarct size in a coronary occlusion/reperfusion model. The two study groups were cyclosporine and cyclosporine + coronary occlusion (n = 20/group). Rats were pretreated with cyclosporine (5, 10, 15, and 25 mg/kg/day) or the vehicle by oral gavage for 3 days (n = 4/dose). On day 4, hearts of rats in the cyclosporine group were excised, and extracted cell metabolites were measured using (1)H and (31)P MRS. The second group was subjected to 30 min of coronary artery occlusion followed by 24 h of reperfusion. Infarct size and area at risk were measured using a double staining method. In the cyclosporine group, cyclosporine reduced cardiac energy metabolism (ATP: r = -0.89, P < 0.001) via depression of oxidative phosphorylation and the Krebs' cycle in a dose-dependent manner. The decrease of ATP levels was positively correlated with changes of NAD(+) (r = 0.89), glutamate (r = 0.95), glutamine (r = 0.84), and glucose concentrations (r = 0.92, all P < 0.002). It was inversely correlated with lactate (r = -0.93, P < 0.001). In the coronary occlusion group, cyclosporine dose dependently reduced the ratio [area of infarct/area of the left ventricle] (r = -0.86, P < 0.01), with 15 mg/kg/day being the most effective cyclosporine dose. The reduction in infarct size correlated with the reduction in oxidative phosphorylation (ATP: r = 0.97; NAD(+): r = 0.82, P < 0.01). The reduction in cardiac energy metabolism before occlusion may be the cause of myocardial preservation during ischemia/reperfusion.

Mechanisms of Clinically Relevant Drug Interactions Associated with Tacrolimus

Clinical Pharmacokinetics. 2002  |  Pubmed ID: 12190331

The clinical management of tacrolimus, a macrolide used as immunosuppressant after transplantation, is complicated by its narrow therapeutic index in combination with inter- and intraindividually variable pharmacokinetics. As a substrate of cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A enzymes and P-glycoprotein, tacrolimus interacts with several other drugs used in transplantation medicine, which also are known CYP3A and/or P-glycoprotein inhibitors and/or inducers. In clinical studies, CYP3A/P-glycoprotein inhibitors and inducers primarily affect oral bioavailability of tacrolimus rather than its clearance, indicating a key role of intestinal P-glycoprotein and CYP3A. There is an almost complete overlap between the reported clinical drug interactions of tacrolimus and those of cyclosporin. However, in comparison with cyclosporin, only few controlled drug interaction studies have been carried out, but tacrolimus drug interactions have been extensively studied in vitro. These results are inconsistent and are of poor predictive value for clinical drug interactions because of false negative results. P-glycoprotein regulates distribution of tacrolimus through the blood-brain barrier into the brain as well as distribution into lymphocytes. Interaction of other drugs with P-glycoprotein may change tacrolimus tissue distribution and modify its toxicity and immunosuppressive activity. There is evidence that ethnic and gender differences exist for tacrolimus drug interactions. Therapeutic drug monitoring to guide dosage adjustments of tacrolimus is an efficient tool to manage drug interactions. In the near future, progress can be expected from studies evaluating potential pharmacokinetic interactions caused by herbal preparations and food components, the exact biochemical mechanism underlying tacrolimus toxicity, and the potential of inhibition of CYP3A and P-glycoprotein to improve oral bioavailability and to decrease intraindividual variability of tacrolimus pharmacokinetics.

Ultrasound-induced Mild Hyperthermia As a Novel Approach to Increase Drug Uptake in Brain Microvessel Endothelial Cells

Pharmaceutical Research. Aug, 2002  |  Pubmed ID: 12240937

Drug delivery to the central nervous system (CNS) is limited by the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Thus, a noninvasive and reversible method to enhance BBB permeation of drugs is highly desirable. In the present work, we studied if ultrasound-induced mild hyperthermia (USHT, 0.4 watts (W)/cm2 at 41 degrees C) can enhance drug absorption in BBB endothelial cells, and we elucidated the mechanism of USHT on cellular accumulation.

Cyclosporine Can Increase Isoflurane MAC

Anesthesia and Analgesia. Oct, 2002  |  Pubmed ID: 12351270

Previous reports indicate that cyclosporine increases sleeping time from barbiturate administration, and analgesia from fentanyl administration, suggesting a possible contribution of cyclosporine to anesthesia. Accordingly, we determined whether cyclosporine pretreatment decreases isoflurane MAC (the minimum alveolar concentration of anesthetic required to eliminate movement in response to noxious stimulation in 50% of subjects) in rats, and whether cyclosporine changes the hindpaw withdrawal latency (HPWL) test to thermal nociceptive stimulation. We assigned rats to receive vehicle (control; n = 18), 7.5 mg. kg(-1). d(-1) cyclosporine (n = 10), or 15 mg. kg(-1). d(-1) cyclosporine (n = 20). MAC was determined before and immediately after 3 days of treatment. HPWL was determined after 3 days of treatment in controls (vehicle) and cyclosporine (15 mg. kg(-1). d(-1)) treated animals. Cyclosporine 7.5 and 15 mg. kg(-1). d(-1) increased MAC by 10.4% +/- 7.3% and 23.1% +/- 17.1% (mean +/- SD) (P < 0.05), respectively. The changes in isoflurane MAC correlated significantly with cyclosporine blood concentrations. Cyclosporine did not significantly increase HPWL. Contrary to our hypotheses, cyclosporine increases rather than decreases MAC, but does not confer appreciable analgesia.

Sirolimus (rapamycin) Monotherapy Prevents Graft Vascular Disease in Nonhuman Primate Recipients of Orthotopic Aortic Allografts

Circulation. May, 2003  |  Pubmed ID: 12719285

Delayed treatment with sirolimus (SRL) halts progression of graft vascular disease (GVD) in nonhuman primate (NHP) aortic allograft recipients. In this study, we investigated whether SRL monotherapy prevents the development of GVD.

Single Dose of Glutamine Enhances Myocardial Tissue Metabolism, Glutathione Content, and Improves Myocardial Function After Ischemia-reperfusion Injury

JPEN. Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition. Nov-Dec, 2003  |  Pubmed ID: 14621120

Myocardial ischemia and reperfusion (I/R) injury causes significant morbidity and mortality. Protection against I/R injury may occur via preservation of tissue metabolism and ATP content, preservation of reduced glutathione, and stimulation of heat shock protein (HSP) synthesis. Supplementation with glutamine (GLN) has been reported to have beneficial effects on all of these protective pathways. Thus, we hypothesized that GLN pretreatment given to the rat in vivo would protect the myocardium against I/R-induced dysfunction.

Transplantation: Toxicokinetics and Mechanisms of Toxicity of Cyclosporine and Macrolides

Current Opinion in Investigational Drugs (London, England : 2000). Nov, 2003  |  Pubmed ID: 14758767

For over two decades, calcineurin inhibitors (CIs) have been the mainstay of immunosuppressive therapy following solid-organ transplantation. However, CI nephrotoxicity is one of the main contributors to chronic kidney allograft dysfunction. A novel class of immunosuppressants that inhibit the kinase mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), although not nephrotoxic themselves, enhance CI nephrotoxicity. The biochemical basis of CI toxicity and their toxicodynamic interaction with mTOR inhibitors is still poorly understood. Studies using a magnetic resonance spectroscopy-based metabonomic approach indicate that CI toxicity is caused by drug-induced mitochondrial dysfunction and that mTOR inhibitors enhance the negative effects of CIs on cell energy metabolism.

Pharmacokinetic Interactions Between Cyclosporine and Protease Inhibitors in HIV+ Subjects

Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics. 2003  |  Pubmed ID: 15618725

With advances in antiretroviral therapy, many HIV+ individuals are living longer lives and some are developing end-stage renal and/or hepatic disease requiring transplantation. These patients require concomitant use of immunosuppressants (e.g., cyclosporine [CsA]) and antiretrovirals (e.g., protease inhibitors [PIs]), which exhibit narrow therapeutic windows and are substrates and inhibitors of cytochrome P450 3A enzymes and the cellular transporter P-glycoprotein. In this pilot study, HIV+ subjects on either oral nelfinavir (NFV) or indinavir (IND) with nondetectable viral loads and normal renal and hepatic function had 12 hour pharmacokinetic (PK) studies on 3 separate days: PIs alone, PIs+intravenous CsA, and PIs+oral CsA to determine the extent of PK interactions between these medications. PIs and CsA concentrations were measured by LC/MS in plasma and whole blood, respectively. Nine subjects (n=7 on NFV, n=2 on IND) completed the study. Only the results of those subjects taking NFV are reported. Oral co-administration of CsA increased NFV T(max) from 2.6+/-0.9 to 3.2+/-0.8 h (p<0.05), and AUC(0-infinity) from 27.9+/-15.2 to 43.2+/-27.1 mg(*)h/mL (p=0.06). Intravenous CsA did not appreciably alter oral pharmacokinetics of NFV. Both CsA and NFV PK parameters exhibited a high degree of intersubject variability, underscoring the need for routine therapeutic drug monitoring of both CsA and PIs in HIV+ subjects undergoing transplantation.

CYP3A4-transfected Caco-2 Cells As a Tool for Understanding Biochemical Absorption Barriers: Studies with Sirolimus and Midazolam

The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. Jan, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 14569063

CYP3A4-transfected Caco-2 cells were used as an in vitro system to predict the importance of drug metabolism and transport on overall drug absorption. We examined the transport and metabolism of two drugs; midazolam, an anesthetic agent and CYP3A4 substrate, and sirolimus, an immunosuppressant and a dual CYP3A4/P-glycoprotein (P-gp) substrate, in the presence of cyclosporine (CsA, a CYP3A4/P-gp inhibitor) or N-[4-[2-(1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-6,7-dimethoxy-2-isoquinolinyl)-ethyl]-phenyl]-9,10-dihydro-5-methoxy-9-oxo-4-acridine carboxamine (GG918) (an inhibitor of P-gp and not CYP3A4). All major CYP3A4 metabolites were formed in the cells (1-OH > 4-OH midazolam and 39-O-desmethyl > 12-OH > 11-OH sirolimus), consistent with results from human liver microsomes. There was no bidirectional transport of midazolam across CYP3A4-transfected Caco-2 cells, whereas there was a 2.5-fold net efflux of sirolimus (1 microM) that disappeared in the presence of CsA or GG918. No change in the absorption rate or extraction ratio (ER) for midazolam was observed when P-gp was inhibited with GG918. Addition of GG918 had a modest impact on the absorption rate and ER for sirolimus (increased 58% and decreased 25%, respectively), whereas a 6.1-fold increase in the absorption rate and a 75% decrease in the ER were found when sirolimus was combined with CsA. Although both midazolam and sirolimus metabolites were preferentially excreted to the apical compartment, only sirolimus metabolites were transported by P-gp as determined from inhibition studies with GG918. Using CYP3A4-transfected Caco-2 cells we determined that, in contrast to P-gp, CYP3A4 is the major factor limiting sirolimus absorption. The integration of CYP3A4 and P-gp into a combined in vitro system was critical to unveil the relative importance of each biochemical barrier.

Preliminary in Vivo Pharmacokinetic and Pharmacodynamic Evaluation of a Novel Calcineurin-independent Inhibitor of NFAT

Transplant International : Official Journal of the European Society for Organ Transplantation. Mar, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 14735234

A-285222 (A-285) is a bis-trifluoromethyl-pyrazole (BTP), a novel class of immunosuppressive agents that inhibit NFAT activity in vitro in human and non-human primate cells through a calcineurin-independent mechanism. In this preliminary study, we treated cynomolgus monkeys with different doses of A-285 for several days. Blood was collected from all animals at different times during the study. From these samples, plasma concentrations of A-285 were measured by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS), and intracellular T-cell production of the cytokines IL-2, IFN-gamma, and TNF-alpha was quantified by flow cytometry using a mitogen-stimulated whole blood assay. Marked inhibition of cytokine production occurred after administration of the first dose of A-285, and this effect was comparable to that of cyclosporine. While neurological toxic side effects were seen when the plasma concentration of A-285 exceeded 4 microg/ml, at lower plasma levels the drug was well tolerated over 2 weeks and its pharmacodynamic effects were sustained throughout this time.

Biochemical Mechanisms of Cyclosporine Neurotoxicity

Molecular Interventions. Apr, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 15087483

Proper management of chemotoxicity in transplant patients requires detailed knowledge of the biochemical mechanisms underlying immunosuppressant toxicity. Neurotoxicity is one of the most significant clinical side effects of the immunosuppressive undecapeptide cyclosporine, occurring at some degree in up to 60% of transplant patients. The clinical symptoms of cyclosporine-mediated neurotoxicity consist of decreased responsiveness, hallucinations, delusions, seizures, cortical blindness, and stroke-like episodes that mimic those clinical symptoms of mitochondrial encephalopathy. Clinical computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies have revealed a correlation between clinical symptoms of cyclosporine-mediated neurotoxicity and morphological changes in the brain, such as hypodensity of white matter, cerebral edema, metabolic encephalopathy, and hypoxic damages. Paradoxically, in animal models cyclosporine protects the brain from ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury. Interestingly, cyclosporine appears to mediate both neurotoxicity (under normoxic conditions) and I/R protection across the same range of drug concentration. Both toxicity and protection might arise from the intersection of cyclosporine with mitochondrial energy metabolism. This review addresses basic biochemical mechanisms of: 1) cyclosporine toxicity in normoxic brain, and 2) its protective effects in the same organ during I/R. The marked and unparallel potential of magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) as a novel quantitative approach to evaluate metabolic drug toxicity is described.

Transport Proteins and Intestinal Metabolism: P-glycoprotein and Cytochrome P4503A

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Apr, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 15228147

Although traditionally the liver was considered the main site of pharmacokinetic drug interactions, this view has been reexamined in light of the finding that cytochrome P4503A4 (CYP3A) enzymes are expressed at high levels in mature villus tip enterocytes. Because of their topographic location in small intestinal enterocytes and their overlap in substrates, functional interactions between P-glycoprotein and CYP3A were suggested. Although the functional interaction between CYP3A and P-glycoprotein is not yet completely understood, experimental evidence suggests several mechanisms: (1) CYP3A and P-glycoprotein are coregulated via the orphan nuclear receptor SXR/PXR; (2) drugs are repeatedly taken up and pumped out of the enterocytes by P-glycoprotein, and repeated exposure to CYP3A enzymes increases the probability of a drug being metabolized; (3) P-glycoprotein keeps intracellular drug concentrations within the linear range of CYP3A enzymes; (4) metabolism results in better substrates for P-glycoprotein; and (5) metabolism shifts affinity to other intestinal efflux transporters to avoid competitive interaction of metabolites with P-glycoprotein-mediated efflux of the parent drug.

Alterations in Glucose Metabolism by Cyclosporine in Rat Brain Slices Link to Oxidative Stress: Interactions with MTOR Inhibitors

British Journal of Pharmacology. Oct, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 15339861

Co-administration of the calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine and the mTOR inhibitors sirolimus or everolimus increases the efficacy of immunosuppression after organ transplantation. However, clinical studies showed enhancement of cyclosporine toxicity. To characterize the biochemical mechanisms involved, we assessed the time-dependent effects of cyclosporine in combination with mTOR inhibitors on energy production (ex vivo (31)P-MRS), glucose metabolism (ex vivo (13)C-MRS), and reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation (using the fluorescent agent 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein diacetate) in perfused rat brain slices. Cyclosporine alone inhibited energy production (ATP: 75+/-9%), the Krebs cycle (4-(13)C-glutamate from 1-(13)C-glucose: 61+/-27%), and oxidative phosphorylation (NAD(+): 62+/-25%) after 4 h of perfusion. After 10 h, activation of anaerobic glycolysis (3-(13)C-lactate: 140+/-17%) compensated for inhibition of mitochondrial energy production and lowered the intracellular pH. ROS formation was increased after 4 h (285+/-55% of untreated control), but not after 10 h. mTOR inhibitors alone inhibited lactate production. When combined with cyclosporine, sirolimus enhanced cyclosporine-induced inhibition of energy metabolism (ATP: 64+/-9%) and ROS formation (367+/-46%). Most importantly, sirolimus inhibited cytosolic glycolysis and therefore compensation for cyclosporine-induced ATP reduction after 10 h. In contrast to sirolimus, everolimus antagonized cyclosporine-induced inhibition of mitochondrial energy metabolism (ATP: 91+/-7%) and ROS formation (170+/-49%). The antioxidant tocopherol antagonized all cyclosporine effects on cell metabolism. Cyclosporine time-dependently inhibited mitochondrial metabolism and increased ROS, followed by compensation involving anaerobic glycolysis. Everolimus antagonized cyclosporine-induced mitochondrial dysfunction, whereas sirolimus inhibited compensatory anaerobic glycolysis, thus enhancing cyclosporine's negative effects. ROS play the key role in mediating the negative effects of cyclosporine on cell energy metabolism.

Automated, Fast, and Sensitive Quantification of Drugs in Human Plasma by LC/LC-MS: Quantification of 6 Protease Inhibitors and 3 Nonnucleoside Transcriptase Inhibitors

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Oct, 2004  |  Pubmed ID: 15385839

An analytic assay based on automated sample preparation and liquid chromatography (LC) coupled with electrospray mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) was developed for the quantification of 6 protease inhibitors (PIs) and 3 nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). The 6 PIs, amprenavir, indinavir, ritonavir, lopinavir, nelfinavir, and saquinavir, as well as the three NNRTIs, nevirapine, efavirenz, and delavirdine, require a succinct analysis technique for therapeutic drug monitoring in HIV/AIDS patients. After protein precipitation, samples were loaded on a C8, 10 x 4-mm extraction column, washed, and, after activation of the column-switching valve, backflushed onto the 30 x 2.1 mm C8 analytic column. [M+H] ions were detected in the selected ion mode. A nonlinear fit (y(-1) = a + b/x, all r2 > 0.999) for amprenavir, indinavir, ritonavir, lopinavir, nelfinavir, and saquinavir and a linear fit (y = ax + b, all r2 > 0.999) for nevirapine, efavirenz, and delavirdine led to best regression. Absolute recoveries were as follows: PIs > 81%; NNRTIs > 76%. Interday and intraday precision were <12.5% for the PIs and <11.7% for the NNRTIs. Interday and intraday accuracy were <12.2% for the PIs and <14.9% for the NNRTIs. Limits of quantification were 20, 40, 50, 40, 40, 20, and 100 microg/L for amprenavir, indinavir, ritonavir, lopinavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir, and the NNRTIs, respectively. The assay allows fast analysis of patient samples for therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) and has successfully been used for TDM and pharmacokinetic drug-drug interactions studies.

Cyclosporine Toxicity in Immunosuppressed Streptozotocin-diabetic Nonhuman Primates

Toxicology. Feb, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 15590127

Streptozotocin (STZ) is widely applied in animal models of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Adverse effects of STZ mainly concern liver and kidney. In nonhuman primates a single 100-150 mg/kg dose invariably induces diabetes with only rare adverse effects. We report one animal with renal failure necessitating sacrifice. Body weight (age) might be a confounding factor, i.e. older animals might be more vulnerable to STZ-related toxicity. We therefore recommended to administer STZ on a mg/m2 basis and not on a mg/kg basis. In our islet transplantation program nonhuman primates with STZ-induced diabetes received transplants under chronic immunosuppression including calcineurin inhibitors (cyclosporine, tacrolimus), drugs in the rapamycin class affecting growth factor-induced cell proliferation, and the sphingosine 1-phosphate receptor antagonist FTY720. Four animals developed renal failure and had to be sacrificed, most likely caused by cyclosporine. Kidney histology was typical for cyclosporine toxicity including thrombotic microangiopathy in glomeruli and fibrinoid necrosis of arteries, and for STZ toxicity including acute tubular necrosis and accumulations of erythroid precursors. This adverse effect was observed at a pharmacologically active cyclosporine exposure. Additionally, six diabetic animals without major adverse effects during cyclosporine or tacrolimus treatment are presented. We conclude that cyclosporine facilitates renal dysfunction in animals with STZ-induced diabetes, presumably related to an increased vulnerability to a toxic insult after STZ administration.

The Effect of Soluble Complement Receptor Type 1 on Acute Humoral Xenograft Rejection in HDAF-transgenic Pig-to-primate Life-supporting Kidney Xenografts

Xenotransplantation. Jan, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 15598270

In pig-to-nonhuman primate solid organ xenotransplantation using organs from donors transgenic for human decay-accelerating factor (hDAF), the main type of rejection is antibody-mediated (acute humoral xenograft rejection, AHXR). This occurs despite the complement-regulatory function of the transgene, neutralization of natural antibodies to Galalpha1-3Gal (Gal) using soluble glycoconjugates, and chronic immunosuppression. As complement components play a major role in graft destruction after antibody binding, we evaluated the efficacy of chronic complement inhibition by soluble complement receptor type 1 (TP10).

Greater Free Plasma VEGF and Lower Soluble VEGF Receptor-1 in Acute Mountain Sickness

Journal of Applied Physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985). May, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 15649874

Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a hypoxia-induced protein that produces vascular permeability, and limited evidence suggests a possible role for VEGF in the pathophysiology of acute mountain sickness (AMS) and/or high-altitude cerebral edema (HACE). Previous studies demonstrated that plasma VEGF alone does not correlate with AMS; however, soluble VEGF receptor (sFlt-1), not accounted for in previous studies, can bind VEGF in the circulation, reducing VEGF activity. In the present study, we hypothesized that free VEGF is greater and sFlt-1 less in subjects with AMS compared with well individuals at high altitude. Subjects were exposed to 4,300 m for 19-20 h (baseline 1,600 m). The incidence of AMS was determined by using a modified Lake Louise symptom score and the Environmental Symptoms Questionnaire for cerebral effects. Plasma was collected at low altitude and after 24 h at high altitude, or at time of illness, and then analyzed by ELISA for VEGF and for soluble VEGF receptor, sFlt-1. AMS subjects had lower sFlt-1 at both low and high altitude compared with well subjects and a significant rise in free plasma VEGF on ascent to altitude compared with well subjects. We conclude that increased free plasma VEGF on ascent to altitude is associated with AMS and may play a role in pathophysiology of AMS.

Adding Sirolimus to Tacrolimus-based Immunosuppression in Pediatric Renal Transplant Recipients Reduces Tacrolimus Exposure

American Journal of Transplantation : Official Journal of the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons. Aug, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 15996252

In adult renal recipients, coadministration of tacrolimus (TAC) and sirolimus (SIR) results in reduced exposure to TAC at SIR doses of 2 mg/day. Eight pediatric renal recipients (median age at transplant 2.0 years, range: 1.2-12.9 years) were converted to TAC- and SIR-based immunosuppression as a rescue therapy. All patients had biopsy-proven chronic allograft nephropathy. TAC levels were measured using a commercially available EMIT assay and SIR levels with a newly developed assay based on the LC-MS MS technology. SIR was started at 0.13+/-0.05 mg/kg/day (3.51+/-1.26 mg/m2/day) in two divided doses. TAC was given at 0.14+/-0.09 mg/kg/day, resulting in a trough level of 6.3+/-2.5 ng/mL. After the addition of SIR, the median dose required to keep TAC blood trough concentrations within the target range increased by 71.2% (range: 21.9-245.4%), dose-normalized TAC exposure (AUC) decreased to 67.1% and the dose-normalized C(max), a surrogate for absorption rate, to 53.8% (both geometric means) while terminal half-life (t1/2), a pharmacokinetic parameter characterizing systemic elimination, remained unchanged (p<0.93). Adding SIR to TAC-based immunosuppression in young pediatric renal transplant recipients results in a significant decrease of TAC exposure. TAC trough levels should be monitored frequently.

Cyclosporine Pharmacokinetics and Dosing Modifications in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-infected Liver and Kidney Transplant Recipients

Transplantation. Jul, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 16003227

With advances in antiretroviral therapy, many human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals are living longer and developing end-stage renal or hepatic disease requiring transplantation. Maintaining the viability of the transplant and suppressing HIV replication requires concomitant use of immunosuppressants (e.g., cyclosporine) and antiretrovirals (e.g., protease inhibitors or nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors), which leads to drug interactions. To assist in appropriate clinical management of HIV-infected transplant recipients, the authors describe the pharmacokinetic interactions between cyclosporine and the antiretroviral medications, and required modifications of cyclosporine dosing.

Microparticle-based Lung Delivery of INH Decreases INH Metabolism and Targets Alveolar Macrophages

Journal of Controlled Release : Official Journal of the Controlled Release Society. Oct, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 16009444

Microparticles prepared by the precipitation with a compressed antisolvent (PCA) process were evaluated for their potential in targeting an ionizable prodrug of isoniazid (INH), isoniazid methanesulfonate (INHMS), for sustained delivery of INH to alveolar macrophages (AMs). The charged prodrug was ion-paired with two different hydrophobic cations (tetrapentylammonium (TPA)- and tetraheptylammonium (THA)-bromide), and loaded separately into the poly(l-lactide) (PLA) microparticles. The drug/polymer particles were spherical in shape and between 1 and 3 mum in diameter. The choice of hydrophobic cations did not affect drug incorporation efficiencies or the release kinetics of INH from the microparticles. Using a sensitive liquid chromatographic tandem mass spectrometric (LC-MS/MS) assay developed for INH, high level of INH was detected in NR8383, a rat AM cell line, following exposure of these cells to drug-loaded microparticles. To confirm the microparticles can target AMs in vivo, we compared the INH levels in lavaged bronchoalveolar macrophages by LC-MS/MS after the Sprague-Dawley rats were administered either INHMS in PLA microparticles by intra-tracheal instillation or INH solution by gavage or intra-tracheal instillation. As expected, only microparticles provided sustained and targeted delivery of INH to AMs. Most importantly, this method of delivery led to substantial reduction in the blood levels of acetylisoniazid (AcINH), a major and potential toxic metabolite of INH.

Development and Validation of a High-throughput Assay for Quantification of the Proliferation Inhibitor ABT-578 Using LC/LC-MS/MS in Blood and Tissue Samples

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Dec, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 16306853

We report here a specific, automated LC/LC-MS/MS assay for the quantification of ABT-578 in human and rabbit blood and rabbit tissues for drug-eluting stent development. After protein precipitation, samples were injected into the HPLC system and extracted online using a high flow of 5 mL/min. The extracts were then backflushed onto the analytic column. The [M+Na] of ABT-578 (m/z 988.6-->369.4) and its internal standard sirolimus (m/z 936.5-->409.3) were monitored. Extraction and analysis took 4 minutes. The assay was validated following the US Food & Drug Administration guidelines. Linearity was 0.025-25 ng/mL for most matrices. In human blood, interday accuracies were 81.8% (at 0.025 ng/mL), 91.0% (1 ng/mL), and 99.5% (50 ng/mL), and interday precisions were 10.7% (0.025 ng/mL), 3.0% (1 ng/mL), and 1.8% (50 ng/mL).

Biomarkers for Toxicodynamic Monitoring of Immunosuppressants: NMR-based Quantitative Metabonomics of the Blood

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Dec, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 16404806

Metabonomics is the latest "omics" science and provides metabolic endpoints of drug toxicity, drug efficacy, and pathophysiology. With high-resolution 'H-NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance)spectroscopy on body fluids (eg, urine, blood samples) used in combination with statistical tools, metabolic biomarkers of drug toxicity can be distinguished and validated. For 2 decades, immuno-suppressant cyclosporine (CsA) has been used in transplantation medicine as a potent calcineurin inhibitor with well-known nephrotoxic side effects. The combination of CsA with novel macrolide immunosuppressants-sirolimus (SRL) or everolimus (RAD)-has proved to have a beneficial synergistic immunosuppressive effect but may also possess an increased nephrotoxic potential. 1H-NMR spectroscopy was performed on the blood from CsA-, SRL-, and RAD (alone and in combination)-treated rats to predict metabolic toxicity and to identify and quantify specific metabolic biomarkers. After 6 days of treatment with 10 mg/kg CsA, a significant increase in blood glucose, hydroxybutyrate, creatine+creatinine, trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO), and cholesterol as well as a decrease in total glutathione concentrations were observed. SRL (3 mg/kg) enhanced the magnitude of CsA metabolic changes (enhanced toxicity),whereas combination with RAD (3 mg/kg) partly curtailed them. Together with pharmacokinetic studies, quantitative NMR-based metabonomics represents a powerful tool for pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic-toxicodynamic evaluation in drug research.

Functional Interactions Between P-glycoprotein and CYP3A in Drug Metabolism

Expert Opinion on Drug Metabolism & Toxicology. Dec, 2005  |  Pubmed ID: 16863430

The interaction between drug-metabolising enzymes and active transporters is an emerging concept in pharmacokinetics. In the gut mucosa, P-glycoprotein and cytochrome P450 (CYP)3A functionally interact in three ways: i) drugs are repeatedly taken up and pumped out of the enterocytes by P-glycoprotein, thus increasing the probability of drugs being metabolised; ii) P-glycoprotein keeps intracellular drug concentrations within the linear range of the metabolising capacity of CYP3A; and iii) P-glycoprotein transports drug metabolites formed in the mucosa back into the gut lumen. In comparison with the gut mucosa, in hepatocytes the spatial sequence of CYP3A and P-glycoprotein is reversed, resulting in different effects when the activity of one or both are changed. CYP3A and P-glycoprotein are both regulated by nuclear receptors such as the pregnane X receptor (PXR). There is significant genetic variability of CYP3A, P-glycoprotein and PXR and their expression and activity is dependent on coadministered drugs, herbs, food, age, hormonal status and disease. Future pharmacogenomic and pharmacokinetic studies will have to take all three components into account to allow for valid conclusions.

Active Drug Transport of Immunosuppressants: New Insights for Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Feb, 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 16418692

Immunosuppressants have a narrow therapeutic index, and pharmacokinetic variability negatively affects long-term outcome of transplantation. Recently, it has become clear that active transport is a major determinant of the inter-and intraindividual variability of the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of immunosuppressants. Active transport plays a key role in (1) the poor correlation between oral doses and systemic exposure of cyclosporine, tacrolimus, sirolimus, and everolimus, (2) tissue distribution including distribution into lymphocytes, (3) hepatic and intestinal metabolism, (4) the pharmacokinetic variability of immunosuppressants after oral dosing, (5) drug-drug interactions, (6) disease-drug interactions, and (7) age, gender, and ethnicity-based differences in pharmacokinetics of immunosuppressants. Those new insights may significantly improve patient management and long-term outcome not only by reducing pharmacokinetic variability and avoidance of drug-drug interactions but also by identification of sensitive patient populations. They will also significantly impact preclinical and clinical development strategies of new immunosuppressants.

Prolonged Diabetes Reversal After Intraportal Xenotransplantation of Wild-type Porcine Islets in Immunosuppressed Nonhuman Primates

Nature Medicine. Mar, 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 16491083

Cell-based diabetes therapy requires an abundant cell source. Here, we report reversal of diabetes for more than 100 d in cynomolgus macaques after intraportal transplantation of cultured islets from genetically unmodified pigs without Gal-specific antibody manipulation. Immunotherapy with CD25-specific and CD154-specific monoclonal antibodies, FTY720 (or tacrolimus), everolimus and leflunomide suppressed indirect activation of T cells, elicitation of non-Gal pig-specific IgG antibody, intragraft expression of proinflammatory cytokines and invasion of infiltrating mononuclear cells into islets.

Risk of Impaired Coagulation in Warfarin Patients Ascending to Altitude (>2400 M)

High Altitude Medicine & Biology. 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 16544965

Approximately 476,000 people on warfarin therapy visit a resort at altitude (>2400 m) annually in Colorado. Clinicians practicing at altitude have expressed concern that ascent to altitude adversely affects coagulation in patients taking warfarin in both high altitude residents and visitors. We sought to determine the effect of ascent to and descent from altitude on coagulation in warfarin patients, as assessed by the international normalized ratio (INR). A retrospective medical chart review was conducted on all warfarin patients treated between August 1998 and October 2003 at a cardiology clinic in which travel to and from altitude was documented in association with each INR measurement in high altitude residents. Of the 1139 INR measurements in 49 patients, 143 were associated with changes in altitude (in 32 of 49 patients). The odds of an INR measurement being below the prescribed range were 2.7 times (95% CI: 1.2-5.8) higher among warfarin patients with recent ascent to altitude, 2.1 times (95% CI: 1.4-3.2) higher among warfarin patients with atrial fibrillation, and 5.6 (95% CI: 2.3-13.7) times higher among warfarin patients with both atrial fibrillation and recent ascent to altitude. Increasing altitude is a risk factor for subtherapeutic INR in warfarin patients and this risk is doubled in atrial fibrillation patients.

Unexpectedly High Exposure to Enteric-coated Mycophenolate Sodium Upon Once-daily Dosing

Pediatric Nephrology (Berlin, Germany). Aug, 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 16721583

Enteric-coated mycophenolate sodium (EC-MPS) has a mean half-life of 11.7 hours, which encouraged hope of using this drug once daily in a nonadherent adolescent SLE patient. This is a case report on a 17-year-old adolescent with a history of noncompliance who was switched from twice-daily mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) to once-daily EC-MPS. The EC-MPS dose was equimolar to the daily MMF dose (1 g MMF BID and 1.44 g of EC-MPS OD). The active compound of both drugs, mycophenolic acid, was measured using a commercially available EMIT assay. Both drugs were well-tolerated and maintained remission of the SLE. The average of three 12-hour areas under the time-concentration curves (AUC) on 1 g of MMF BID was 59.0 mgxh/L. In contrast, the 24-hour AUC after 1.44 g EC-MPS OD was 283.2 mgxh/L, more than double the expected 118.0 mgxh/L of two MMF dosing intervals. A repeat 24-hour AUC after 1.08 g of EC-MPS was 218.2 mgxh/L. EC-MPS once daily may be a well-tolerated therapeutic option for nonadherent adolescent lupus patients, but may be associated with a significantly higher exposure than the equivalent MMF BID dose.

Impact of Organ Preservation Using HTK for Graft Flush and Subsequent Storage in UW in Rat Kidney Transplantation

European Surgical Research. Europäische Chirurgische Forschung. Recherches Chirurgicales Européennes. 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 16847398

In kidney transplantation, preservation has a significant influence on organ function. Since previous reports have indicated a benefit of combining histidine-tryptophan-ketoglutarate (HTK) and University of Wisconsin (UW) solution, we evaluated the effects of initial flush with low viscosity HTK, followed by storage in UW.

Pharmacokinetics of Pyridostigmine in a Child with Postural Tachycardia Syndrome

Pediatrics. Nov, 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 17015495

Pyridostigmine has been proposed for the treatment of postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome in adults at a dose of 60 mg twice daily, but no dosing recommendation exists for children. With the approval of our local ethics board, we tested the pharmacokinetics of pyridostigmine in 6 children with myasthenia and a pediatric index patient with severe postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome whose condition failed all conventional therapy and who had developed significant postural hypertension. Pyridostigmine was quantified by using a validated, semiautomated, and specific high-performance liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry assay in combination with online column-switching extraction and turbo electrospray ionization. The patient with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome showed a dose-dependent favorable response to oral pyridostigmine. Pharmacokinetic evaluation revealed a short half-life of 2.29 hours, similar to the 2.0 +/- 0.63 hours in the patients with myasthenia. The patient with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome has subsequently been treated at a dose of 45 mg in the morning, 30 mg at lunchtime, and 15 mg at bedtime; after 9 months, there has been persistent positive effect and without additional blood pressure medication. No major adverse effects occurred. Pyridostigmine has been a safe and effective treatment modality for this child with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome. The short half-life suggests that dosing 3 times per day is preferable.

Cyclosporin Twice or Three Times Daily Dosing in Pediatric Transplant Patients - It is Not the Same!

Pediatric Transplantation. Dec, 2006  |  Pubmed ID: 17096765

Not infrequently, physicians elect to divide CyA-ME from b.i.d. to t.i.d. dosing in an effort to minimize toxicity. Equivalent exposure is assumed. Few studies have compared 24-h PK profiles on both dosing regimes in the same patient. We retrospectively studied a heterogeneous population of seven pediatric patients (one heart transplant, five renal transplants and one FSGS patient) on both dosing regimes who had complete 24-h PK profiles on CyA-ME. Four patients were converted from b.i.d. to t.i.d. and three patients from t.i.d. to b.i.d. dosing. There was no difference in the dose/kg (5.66 +/- 2.52 mg/kg on b.i.d. dosing and 5.75 +/- 1.81 mg/kg on t.i.d. dosing, p = 0.8578, two-sided t-test). When comparing the dose-normalized AUCs over 24 h, every single patient demonstrated lower CyA-ME exposure on t.i.d. than on b.i.d. dosing with an average relative bioavailability that was 37.9% lower on t.i.d. than on b.i.d. dosing. The median dose-normalized AUC(0-->24h) dropped from 1620 ng x h x kg/mL x mg (range: 1253-4319) on b.i.d. to 1016 ng x h x kg/mL x mg (range: 712-1485, p = 0.02, Wilcoxon's matched pairs test) on t.i.d. dosing. Our results indicate t.i.d. dosing of CyA-ME results in significantly lower exposure when the same total dose is administered in two divided doses. This reduced exposure may potentially increase the risk for rejection.

Quantification of Isoniazid and Acetylisoniazid in Rat Plasma and Alveolar Macrophages by Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry with On-line Extraction

Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Mar, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17070115

To evaluate if pulmonary delivery of microparticles loaded with a prodrug of isoniazid (INH), isoniazid methanesulfonate (INHMS), can target alveolar macrophages (AM) and reduce metabolism of INH, an HPLC-MS/MS assay with automated online extraction for quantification of INH and its metabolite acetylisoniazid (AcINH) in plasma and AMs was developed and validated. Reproducibility in rat plasma and homogenate of a rat AM cell line, NR8383, for INH and AcINH showed excellent precision and accuracy with calibration curves exhibiting linearity within a range of 1-250ng/ml of INH and 0.05-50ng/ml of AcINH (r(2)>0.99). The validated methods were successfully applied to pharmacokinetic study of INHMS-loaded microparticles in rats, demonstrating efficient targeting of AMs and reduction of INH metabolism.

Prolonged Survival of Porcine Hepatocytes in Cynomolgus Monkeys

Gastroenterology. Jan, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17241882

Management of patients with liver failure can be a significant medical challenge, and transplantation of the liver is the only definitive therapy. Whole liver allotransplantation is limited by a shortage of human donors and the risks of the surgery in those most ill. Transplants consisting of xenogeneic hepatocytes might overcome these problems, and work in rodents indicates that such transplants can correct some metabolic deficiencies and can prevent the complications and mortality associated with hepatic failure. As a prelude to clinical application, we tested the feasibility of hepatocyte xenotransplantation in nonhuman primates.

HPLC-atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionization MS/MS for Quantification of 15-F2t-isoprostane in Human Urine and Plasma

Clinical Chemistry. Mar, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17259231

Quantification of F(2)-Isoprostanes is considered a reliable index of the oxidative stress status in vivo and is valuable in the diagnosis and monitoring of a variety of diseases. Because of complex and lengthy sample preparation procedures, current chromatography/mass spectrometry and immunoassays are impractical for measuring larger numbers of samples. Thus, we developed and validated a semiautomated high-throughput HPLC tandem mass spectrometry assay for the quantification of F(2)-Isoprostane F(2t) in human urine and plasma.

Development and Validation of an Assay for the Quantification of 11 Nucleotides Using LC/LC-electrospray Ionization-MS

Analytical Biochemistry. Jun, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17475198

A unique quantitative high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) method to investigate the energy state in cells and tissues was developed and validated using a chromatographic method designed to (i) separate and quantify more than 11 nucleotides without the use of phosphate buffer and (ii) minimize the potential ion suppression common to other nucleotide methods. Several commonly used extraction methods were compared based on absolute recoveries and reproducibilities. Perchloric acid (PCA) extraction yielded the highest recoveries (75-86%) and showed the best reproducibility (coefficient of variation=2.5-9.5%). Our assay, which included PCA extraction, online desalting, separation of the high-energy phosphates on a C18 reversed-phase column using a methanol/dibutylammonium formate gradient, and detection of negative ions in the single ion mode, met all predefined acceptance criteria for the quantification of AMP, ADP, ATP, CDP, CTP, FAD, GDP, GTP, UDP, and UTP. Detection limits ranged from 0.25 pmol on-column (FAD) to 4 pmol (NAD+). Assay development also included validation of tissue sample collection procedures. ATP/ADP concentrations and the resulting energy charge in kidney tissues are very sensitive to hypoxia, with significant decreases occurring within seconds. Avoidance of hypoxia during tissue retrieval is critical, and in vivo freeze clamping compares favorably with other tissue collection techniques.

Pharmacokinetics of Enteric-coated Mycophenolate Sodium in Stable Liver Transplant Recipients

Clinical Transplantation. May-Jun, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17488394

Mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) is one of the major immunosuppressive agents used in liver transplantation recipients. In an attempt to mitigate one of the most common side effects of MMF (gastrointestinal symptoms), enteric-coated mycophenolate sodium (EC-MPS) was developed. In this study, we report the pharmacokinetic profile of EC-MPS in stable liver transplantation recipients administered a single 720 mg dose.

Assessment and Validation of the MS/MS Fragmentation Patterns of the Macrolide Immunosuppressant Everolimus

Journal of Mass Spectrometry : JMS. Jun, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17511017

Everolimus (40-O-(2-hydroxyethyl)rapamycin, Certican) is a 31-membered macrolide lactone. In lymphocytes, it inhibits the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and is used as an immunosuppressant after organ transplantation. Due to its instability in pure organic solvents and insufficient HPLC separation, NMR spectroscopy analysis of its metabolite structures is nearly impossible. Therefore, structural identification based on tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) and MS(n) fragmentation patterns is critical. Here, we have systematically assessed the fragmentation pattern of everolimus during liquid chromatography (LC)-electrospray ionization (ESI)-MS/MS and validated the fragment structures by (1) comparison with structurally identified derivatives (sirolimus), (2) high-resolution mass spectrometry, (3) elucidation of fragmentation pathways using ion trap mass spectrometry (up to MS(5)) and (4) H/D exchange. In comparison with the structurally related immunosuppressants tacrolimus and sirolimus, our study was complicated by the low ionization efficiency of everolimus. Detection of positive ions gave the best sensitivity, and everolimus and its fragments were mainly detected as sodium adducts. LC-ESI-MS/MS of everolimus in combination with collision-induced dissociation (CID) resulted in a complex fragmentation pattern and the structures of 53 fragments were identified. These detailed fragmentation pathways of everolimus provided the basis for structural elucidation of all everolimus metabolites generated in vivo und in vitro.

Serotonin Transporter Protein in Pulmonary Hypertensive Rats Treated with Atorvastatin

American Journal of Physiology. Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology. Sep, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17575010

HMG-CoA-reductase inhibitors (statins) influence lipid metabolism and have pleiotropic effects. Several statins reduce various forms of pulmonary hypertension (PH) in animal models. The relationship between atorvastatin and expression of serotonin transporter protein (5-HTT) remains unknown. This study focused on the effects of atorvastatin on the course of monocrotaline (MCT)-induced PH and its relation to 5-HTT expression. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were challenged with MCT with or without subsequent daily oral treatment with 0.1, 1, and 10 mg/kg of atorvastatin for 28 days. Over the 4-wk course, the progression of PH was followed by transthoracic echocardiography [pulmonary artery pressure was assessed by pulmonary artery flow acceleration time (PAAT), an estimate reciprocal to pulmonary artery pressure], and, at the end of the 4-wk course, invasive right ventricular pressure, right ventricular weight, quantitative morphology, and 5-HTT expression were measured. MCT caused significant PH as early as 7 days after injection. Atorvastatin treatment increased PAAT and reduced right ventricular pressure, right ventricular hypertrophy, and vascular remodeling over the 4-wk course. MCT challenge was associated with increased pulmonary vascular 5-HTT expression, and atorvastatin treatment reduced the 5-HTT expression. MCT-induced PH over the course of 4 wk can be easily followed by transthoracic echocardiography, and atorvastatin is effective in reducing the PH. Atorvastatin's effects are associated with a decrease of 5-HTT expression.

Comparison of Lung Proteome Profiles in Two Rodent Models of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

Proteomics. Jul, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17623304

We studied the lung proteome changes in two widely used models of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH): monocrotaline (MCT) injection and chronic hypoxia (CH); untreated rats were used as controls (n = 6/group). After 28 days, invasive right ventricular systolic pressure (RVSP) was measured. Lungs were immunostained for alpha-smooth muscle actin (alphaSMA). 2-DE (n = 4/group) followed by nano-LC-MS/MS was applied for protein identification. Western blotting was used additionally if possible. RVSP was significantly increased in MCT- and CH-rats (MCT 62.5 +/- 4.4 mmHg, CH 62.2 +/- 4.1 mmHg, control 25.0 +/- 1.7 mmHg, p<0.001). This was associated with an increase of alphaSMA positive vessels. In both groups, there was a significantly increased expression of proteins associated with the contractile apparatus (diphosphoHsp27 (p<0.001), Septin2 (p<0.001), F-actin capping protein (p<0.01), and tropomyosin beta (p<0.02)). In CH, proteins of the nitric oxide (Hsc70; p = 0.002), carbon monoxide (biliverdin reductase; p = 0.005), and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) pathway (annexin 3; p<0.001) were significantly increased. In MCT, proteins involved in serotonin synthesis (14-3-3; p = 0.02), the enhanced unfolded protein response (ERp57; p = 0.02), and intracellular chloride channels (CLIC 1; p = 0.002) were significantly elevated. Therefore, MCT- and CH-induced vasoconstriction and remodeling seemed to be mediated via different signaling pathways. These differences should be considered in future studies using either PAH model.

Identification of Everolimus Metabolite Patterns in Trough Blood Samples of Kidney Transplant Patients

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Oct, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 17898649

Everolimus is used as an immunosuppressant after organ transplantation. It is extensively metabolized, mainly by cytochrome P4503A enzymes, resulting in several hydroxylated and demethylated metabolites. The structures of these metabolites after in vitro metabolism of everolimus by human liver microsomes have recently been identified. It was the goal to elucidate the everolimus metabolite patterns in 128 trough blood samples from kidney graft patients using high-performance liquid chromatography (LC)-ion trap mass spectrometry (MS) in combination with analysis of the fragmentation patterns of the metabolites isolated from patient blood and comparison with the metabolites generated in vitro. After identification, concentrations of the metabolites were estimated using LC-MS. Relative to the everolimus concentrations in trough blood samples, metabolite concentrations were [median (range), n = 128] 46-hydroxy 44.1% (0-784%), 24-hydroxy 7.7% (0-85.6%), and 25-hydroxy 14.4% (0-155.4%); 11-Hydroxy, 12-hydroxy, 14-hydroxy, 49-hydroxy, two hydroxy-piperidine everolimus metabolites, 16-O-desmethyl, 16,39-O-didesmethyl, 16,27-O-didesmethyl, and 27,39-O-didesmethyl everolimus were also detected. However, when detectable, concentrations were consistently between the lower limit of detection (0.1 microg/L) and the lower limit of quantification (0.25 microg/L) of our LC-MS assay. In most trough blood samples, the total metabolite concentrations were between 50% and 100% of the everolimus concentrations. The clinical importance of everolimus metabolites in blood of patients including pharmacodynamics, toxicodynamics, and cross-reactivity with the antibodies of immunoassays used for therapeutic drug monitoring remains to be evaluated.

Crossreactivity of Isolated Everolimus Metabolites with the Innofluor Certican Immunoassay for Therapeutic Drug Monitoring of Everolimus

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Dec, 2007  |  Pubmed ID: 18043471

Everolimus is an immunosuppressant used as rejection prophylaxis in patients undergoing transplants. It requires blood concentration-guided dosing and is extensively metabolized. It was the goal to assess the crossreactivity of the major everolimus metabolites in the blood of patients undergoing kidney graft with the Innofluor Certican Assay (Seradyn, Inc., Indianapolis, IN), a clinical assay used to quantify the concentrations of everolimus in patients' blood samples. The three main hydroxy metabolites of everolimus (46-, 24-, and 25-hydroxy everolimus) and all other minor hydroxylated and demethylated metabolites were generated using pooled human liver microsomes and purified using semipreparative high-performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection. Structures were confirmed using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/ion trap mass spectrometry and analysis of the fragmentation patterns. Blank blood samples were spiked with the isolated metabolites to determine the specific crossreactivity with the immunoassay. Crossreactivity testing with the immunoassay showed 1% or less for 46-hydroxy and 24-hydroxy everolimus and 6% or less crossreactivity for 25-hydroxy everolimus at therapeutically relevant concentrations. Crossreactivity testing of the minor metabolites showed crossreactivities of 16.3% for 45-hydroxy, 33.0% for 12-hydroxy, 18.3% for 11-hydroxy, 15.3% for 14-hydroxy, 38.7% for OH-piperidine I, 46.3% for OH-piperidine II, 43% for 39-O-desmethyl, 142% for 27-O-desmethyl, and 68% for 40-O-desethylhydroxy everolimus (sirolimus).

Pharmacokinetics of Mycophenolate Mofetil and Sirolimus in Children

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Apr, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18367972

This review summarizes the pharmacokinetics in children and youths of 2 commonly used immunosuppressive drugs, mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) and sirolimus (Sir), as presented at the IATDMCT 2007 conference. The review focuses on the developmental changes of drug disposition during childhood and adolescence. Regarding mycophenolate mofetil, the authors were unable to demonstrate age dependency of MMF in combination with cyclosporine. By contrast, there was an inverse relationship between age and the dose-normalized mycophenolate (MPA) area-under-the-time-concentration curve (AUC) in children who received concomitant tacrolimus (Tac). Dose-normalized MPA AUCs were higher than commonly observed in adult patients. It can be hypothesized that the age dependency is related to developmental changes in the expression of the UDP-glucuronosyltransferases. Sirolimus half-life and mean residence time (MRT) are shorter than in adults. Similar to that in adults, there is a profound drug-drug interaction between cyclosporine and Sir. In our own experience, Sir was started at 0.13 +/- 0.05 mg/kg/day. The average Sir AUC was 64.9 +/- 29.7 ng*h/mL. The median (range) AUC for each metabolite was as follows: 12-hydroxy-Sir, 7.6 (0.2-18.8); 46-hydroxy-Sir, 3.1 (0.0-12.4); 24-hydroxy-Sir, 4.3 (0.0-12.6); piperidine-hydroxy-Sir, 3.5 (0.0-8.3); 39-desmethyl-Sir, 3.6 (0.0-11.3); 16-desmethyl-Sir, 5.0 (0.1-9.9); and di-hydroxy-Sir, 4.3 (0.0-32.5) ng*h/mL. Of the total metabolite AUC, 77.5% was due to hydroxylated metabolites, while 39-O-desmethyl Sir (the main metabolite in adults) comprised only 8.4% of the metabolites. This is clinically relevant, as 39-O-desmethyl Sir shows 86% to 127% cross-reactivity with the Sir immunoassay. Metabolites reached a median AUC of 60% of that of Sir, but the range was 2.6% to 136%. The age dependency of Sir metabolite formation was confirmed in a human liver microsome model. On the basis of the age dependency of piperidine-hydroxy Sir, the authors postulate that the ontogeny of the drug disposition can be largely explained by developmental changes of the CYP2C8 expression. In conclusion, both Sir and MMF drug disposition vary in children and adolescents from adult patients, most likely because of developmental changes of biliary transporters and metabolic enzymes.

Toxicodynamic Therapeutic Drug Monitoring of Immunosuppressants: Promises, Reality, and Challenges

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Apr, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18367974

Although current immunosuppressive protocols have dramatically decreased acute rejection episodes, there has been less progress in terms of long-term graft survival after kidney transplantation over the last 2 decades. The key to reducing the damage to a transplanted organ as caused by chronic processes is early detection. Modern screening technologies in the fields of genetics, genomics, protein profiling (proteomics), and biochemical profiling (metabolomics) have opened new opportunities for the development of sensitive and specific diagnostic tools. Metabolic profiling appears to be a promising strategy because changes in the cell biochemistry are ultimately responsible for the histologic and pathophysiologic changes of the transplanted kidney and are most likely already detectable before histologic and pathophysiologic changes occur. Using truly no-targeted screening technologies as clinical diagnostic tools is not yet feasible, mostly because of the complexity of the data generated and the lack of algorithms to convert this information into clinically applicable information. A realistic and powerful targeted approach is the development of combinatorial biomarkers. These are biomarker patterns that typically consist of five or more individual parameters. Combined biomarker patterns confer significantly more information than a single measurement and, thus, can be expected to have better specificity and sensitivity. A series of studies in rats and healthy individuals evaluating the effects of immunosuppressants on urine metabolite patterns showed that immunosuppressant-induced changes of metabolite patterns in urine were associated with a combination of changes in glomerular filtration, changes in secretion/absorption by tubulus cells, and changes in kidney cell metabolism. These studies suggested that a combination of biomarkers that can be used for toxicodynamic therapeutic drug monitoring of immunosuppressants should include urine metabolites that constitute valid surrogate markers of these kidney functions.

A Metabonomic and Proteomic Analysis of Changes in IMCD3 Cells Chronically Adapted to Hypertonicity

Nephron. Physiology. 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18460876

The genomic response to adaptation of IMCD3 cells to hypertonicity results in both upregulation and downregulation of a variety of genes.

Oxidative in Vitro Metabolism of Liquiritigenin, a Bioactive Compound Isolated from the Chinese Herbal Selective Estrogen Beta-receptor Agonist MF101

Drug Metabolism and Disposition: the Biological Fate of Chemicals. Nov, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18669586

Liquiritigenin [2,3-dihydro-7-hydroxy-2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-(S)-4H-1-benzopyran-4-one] is one of the major active compounds of MF101, an herbal extract currently in clinical trials for the treatment of hot flashes and night sweats in postmenopausal women. MF101 is a selective estrogen receptor beta agonist but does not activate the estrogen receptor alpha. Incubation with pooled human liver microsomes yielded a single metabolite. Its structure was elucidated using tandem mass spectrometry in combination with analysis of the fragmentation patterns. The metabolite resulted from the loss of two hydrogens and rearrangement to the stable 7,4'-dihydroxyflavone. The structure was also confirmed by comparison with authentic standard material. Maximum apparent reaction velocity (V(max)) and Michaelis-Menten constant (K(m)) for the formation of 7,4'-dihydroxyflavone were 32.5 nmol/g protein/min and 128 microM, respectively. After correction for protein binding (free fraction = 0.84), the apparent intrinsic clearance (CL(int)) for 7,4'-dihydroxyflavone formation was 0.3 ml/g/min. Liquiritigenin was almost exclusively metabolized by CYP3A enzymes. Comparison of liquiritigenin metabolism in human liver microsomes isolated from 16 individuals showed 9.5-fold variability in metabolite formation (3.4-32.2 nmol/g protein/min). An estrogen receptor luciferase assay indicated that the metabolite was a 3-fold more potent activator of the estrogen receptor beta than the parent compound and did not activate the estrogen receptor alpha.

An Automated, Highly Sensitive LC-MS/MS Assay for the Quantification of the Opiate Antagonist Naltrexone and Its Major Metabolite 6beta-naltrexol in Dog and Human Plasma

Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Oct, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 18805072

To support animal studies and clinical pharmacokinetic trials, we developed and validated an automated, specific and highly sensitive LC-MS/MS method for the quantification of naltrexone and 6beta-naltrexol in the same run. In human plasma, the assay had a lower limit of quantitation of only 5pg/mL. This was of critical importance to follow naltrexone pharmacokinetics during its terminal elimination phase. The assay had the following key performance characteristics for naltrexone in human plasma: range of reliable quantification: 0.005-100ng/mL (r2>0.99), inter-day accuracy (0.03ng/mL): 103.7% and inter-day precision: 10.1%. There were no ion suppression, matrix interferences or carry-over.

The Pharmacokinetics of Biolimus A9 After Elution from the Nobori Stent in Patients with Coronary Artery Disease: the NOBORI PK Study

Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions : Official Journal of the Society for Cardiac Angiography & Interventions. Dec, 2008  |  Pubmed ID: 19016466

The aim of this study was to assess the pharmacokinetics and tolerability of Biolimus A9 eluted from Nobori coronary stents.

Characterization of Sirolimus Metabolites in Pediatric Solid Organ Transplant Recipients

Pediatric Transplantation. Feb, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 18482220

Potential age-dependent changes of sirolimus metabolite patterns in pediatric renal transplant recipients remain elusive. Thirteen pediatric solid organ transplant recipients (10 kidney, one combined liver-kidney, two liver, mean age 8.0 +/- 5.0 yr) underwent a sirolimus pharmacokinetic profile in steady-state with 10 samples drawn over 12 h post-intake to calculate the AUC(0-12 h). Concentrations of sirolimus and metabolite were quantified using a validated LC-MS/MS assay and metabolite structures were identified directly in blood extracts using LC-MS/iontrap. Average sirolimus AUC(0-12 h) was 64.9 +/- 29.7 ng h/mL. Median (range) AUC(0-12 h) for each metabolite (ng h/mL) was: 12-hydroxy-sirolimus 7.6 (0.2-18.8), 46-hydroxy sirolimus 3.1 (0.0-12.4), 24-hydroxy sirolimus 4.3 (0.0-12.6), piperidine-hydroxy sirolimus 3.5 (0.0-8.3), 39-O-desmethyl sirolimus 3.6 (0.0-11.3), 16-O-desmethyl sirolimus 5.0 (0.1-9.9), and di-hydroxy sirolimus 4.3 (0.0-32.5). The metabolites reached a median total AUC(0-12 h) of 60% of that of sirolimus. The range was 2.6-136%, indicating significant variability. In all, 77.5% of the metabolites were hydroxylated, while 39-O-desmethyl sirolimus accounted for only 8.4% of the AUC(0-12 h). This is clinically relevant as 39-O-desmethyl sirolimus shows 86-127% cross-reactivity with the antibody of the widely used Abbott sirolimus immunoassay. The metabolism of sirolimus in the children included in our study differed from that reported in adults, which should be considered when monitoring sirolimus exposure immunologically.

Competitive Substrates for P-glycoprotein and Organic Anion Protein Transporters Differentially Reduce Blood Organ Transport of Fentanyl and Loperamide: Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics in Sprague-Dawley Rats

Anesthesia and Analgesia. Jan, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19095843

Drug transport proteins may be instrumental in controlling the concentration of fentanyl at mu receptors in the brain and may provide potential therapeutic targets for controlling an individual response to opioid administration. P-glycoprotein (P-gp) efflux transporter and organic anion transport protein inward transporters (OATP, human; Oatp, rat) have been implicated in fentanyl and verapamil (only P-gp) transport across the blood-brain barrier. We hypothesized that transport proteins P-gp and Oatp mediate opioid uptake in a drug and organ-specific manner, making them excellent potential targets for therapeutic intervention.

Urine Metabolites Reflect Time-dependent Effects of Cyclosporine and Sirolimus on Rat Kidney Function

Chemical Research in Toxicology. Jan, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19099400

The clinical use of the immunosuppressant calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine is limited by its nephrotoxicity. This is enhanced when combined with the immunosuppressive mTOR inhibitor sirolimus. Nephrotoxicity of both drugs is not yet fully understood. The goal was to gain more detailed mechanistic insights into the time-dependent effects of cyclosporine and sirolimus on the rat kidney by using a comprehensive approach including metabolic profiling in urine ((1)H NMR spectroscopy), kidney histology, kidney function parameters in plasma, measurement of glomerular filtration rates, the oxidative stress marker 15-F(2t)-isoprostane in urine, and immunosuppressant concentrations in blood and kidney. Male Wistar rats were treated with vehicle (controls), cyclosporine (10/25 mg/kg/day), and/or sirolimus (1 mg/kg/day) by oral gavage once daily for 6 and 28 days. Twenty-eight day treatment led to a decrease of glomerular filtration rates (cyclosporine, -59%; sirolimus, -25%). These were further decreased when both drugs were combined (-86%). Histology revealed tubular damage after treatment with cyclosporine, which was enhanced when sirolimus was added. No other part of the kidney was affected. (1)H NMR spectroscopy analysis of urine (day 6) revealed time-dependent changes of 2-oxoglutarate, citrate, and succinate concentrations. In combination with increased urine isoprostane concentrations, these changes indicated oxidative stress. After 28 days of cyclosporine treatment, urine metabonomics shifted to patterns typical for proximal tubular damage with reduction of Krebs cycle intermediates and trimethylamine-N-oxide concentrations, whereas acetate, lactate, trimethylamine, and glucose concentrations increased. Again, sirolimus enhanced these negative effects. Our results indicate that cyclosporine and/or sirolimus induce damage of the renal tubular system. This is reflected by urine metabolite patterns, which seem to be more sensitive than currently used clinical kidney function markers such as creatinine concentrations in serum. Metabolic profiling in urine may provide the basis for the development of toxicodynamic monitoring strategies for immunosuppressant nephrotoxicity.

Metabolic Profiles in Urine Reflect Nephrotoxicity of Sirolimus and Cyclosporine Following Rat Kidney Transplantation

Nephron. Experimental Nephrology. 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19293597

Cyclosporine and/or sirolimus impair recovery of renal transplants. This study examines the changes in urine metabolite profiles as surrogate markers of renal cell metabolism and function after cyclosporine and/or sirolimus treatment employing a rat kidney transplantation model.

Enhanced Leukocyte HIF-1alpha and HIF-1 DNA Binding in Humans After Rapid Ascent to 4300 M

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Jun, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19303436

Hypoxia plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of a multitude of diseases and clinical conditions such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, pulmonary disease, inflammation, organ transplant, and wound healing. Investigations into the role of hypoxia-inducible transcription factor (HIF) in disease development have been conducted with the basic premise that HIF is activated in vivo during hypoxia in humans, yet this basic physiologic premise has never verified. Thus, we hypothesized that HIF-1 DNA binding would be enhanced in vivo in humans in response to acute global hypoxia. Fourteen human subjects were exposed to normoxia (1600 m) and hypoxia (4300 m, approximately 12% O(2)) in a hypobaric hypoxic chamber (8 h). HIF-1 DNA binding and HIF-1alpha protein were evaluated in circulating leukocytes. Oxidative markers were evaluated by plasma metabolomics using nuclear magnetic resonance and by urinary 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations. Leukocyte HIF-1 DNA binding was increased (p=0.007) and HIF-1alpha was greater during hypoxia compared to normoxia. Circulating total glutathione was reduced by 35% (p=0.001), and lactate and succinate were increased by 29 and 158%, respectively (p=0.007 and 0.001), as were urinary 15-F(2t)-isoprostanes (p=0.037). HIF-1 DNA binding and HIF-1alpha were elevated in vivo in leukocytes of healthy human subjects exposed to 12% oxygen, in association with plasma and urinary markers of hypoxic stress.

Development and Validation of a Sensitive Assay for the Quantification of Imatinib Using LC/LC-MS/MS in Human Whole Blood and Cell Culture

Biomedical Chromatography : BMC. Dec, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19517424

We developed and validated a semi-automated LC/LC-MS/MS assay for the quantification of imatinib in human whole blood and leukemia cells. After protein precipitation, samples were injected into the HPLC system and trapped onto the enrichment column (flow 5 mL/min); extracts were back-flushed onto the analytical column. Ion transitions [M + H](+) of imatinib (m/z = 494.3 --> 394.3) and its internal standard trazodone (372.5 --> 176.3) were monitored. The range of reliable response was 0.03-75 ng/mL. The inter-day precisions were: 8.4% (0.03 ng/mL), 7.2% (0.1 ng/mL), 6.5% (1 ng/mL), 8.2% (10 ng/mL) and 4.3% (75 ng/mL) with no interference from ion suppression. Autosampler stability was 24 hs and samples were stable over three freeze-thaw cycles. This semi-automated method is simple with only one manual step, uses a commercially available internal standard, and has proven to be robust in larger studies.

Metabolic Characteristics of Imatinib Resistance in Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia Cells

British Journal of Pharmacology. Sep, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19663881

Early detection of resistance development is crucial for imatinib-based treatment in chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) patients. We aimed to distinguish metabolic markers of cell resistance to imatinib.

Irradiation Alters Selection for Oncogenic Mutations in Hematopoietic Progenitors

Cancer Research. Sep, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19738065

Exposure to ionizing radiation and other DNA-damaging carcinogens is strongly associated with induction of malignancies. Prevailing paradigms attribute this association to the induction of oncogenic mutations, as the incidence of oncogenic events is thought to limit initiation and progression of cancers. On the other hand, random mutagenic and genotoxic effects of irradiation are likely to alter progenitor cell populations and the microenvironment, thus altering the selective effects of oncogenic mutations. Using competitive bone marrow transplantation experiments in mice, we show that ionizing irradiation leads to a persistent decline in the numbers and fitness of hematopoietic stem cells, in part resulting from persistent induction of reactive oxygen species. Previous irradiation dramatically alters the selective effects of some oncogenic mutations, substantially inhibiting clonal expansion and leukemogenesis driven by Bcr-Abl or activated N-Ras oncogenes but enhancing the selection for and leukemogenesis driven by the activated Notch1 mutant ICN. Irradiation-dependent selection for ICN expression occurs in a hematopoietic stem cell-enriched pool, which should facilitate the accumulation of additional oncogenic events at a committed T-progenitor stage critical for formation of T-lymphocytic leukemia stem cells. Enhancement of ICN-driven selection and leukemogenesis by previous irradiation is in part non-cell autonomous, as partial restoration of normal hematopoiesis can reverse these effects of irradiation. These studies show that irradiation substantially alters the adaptive landscape in hematopoietic progenitors and suggest that the causal link between irradiation and carcinogenesis might involve increased selection for particular oncogenic mutations.

Development and Validation of a Semi-automated Assay for the Highly Sensitive Quantification of Biolimus A9 in Human Whole Blood Using High-performance Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry

Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Nov, 2009  |  Pubmed ID: 19762292

Drug-eluting stents are sustained-release intra-coronary devices that are usually coated with a few hundred micrograms of drug. Measuring the drugs that are released over weeks in order to assess human pharmacokinetics is a challenge that requires assays with high sensitivity. We developed and validated a semi-automated LC-MS/MS assay for the quantification of Biolimus A9, a proliferation signal inhibitor that was specifically developed for coating on drug-eluting stents in human EDTA blood. The only manual step was the addition of a zinc sulfate/methanol protein precipitation solution which included the internal standard. Samples were injected into the HPLC and extracted online. The assay had the following performance characteristics: range of reliable response 0.01-100 ng/mL (r(2)>0.99), inter-day accuracy (0.033 ng/mL): 111.7%, and inter-day precision: 8.6%. There was no ion suppression, matrix interferences or carry-over. Extracted samples were stable in the autosampler at +4 degrees C for at least 24 h and could undergo three freeze-thaw cycles. The assay, with a lower limit of detection of 333 fg/mL and a lower limit of quantitation of 10 pg/mL, was sufficiently sensitive and robust for quantifying Biolimus A9 in clinical trials after i.v. injection and after stent implantation.

Consequences of Delayed Pump Infusion Line Change in Patients with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus Treated with Continuous Subcutaneous Insulin Infusion

Journal of Diabetes and Its Complications. Mar-Apr, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 19395280

To systematically investigate the effect of lack of adherence to the recommended change in insulin pump infusion line use beyond 48 h and determine whether the type of insulin made a difference.

Identification and Characterization of a Bacterial Cytochrome P450 for the Metabolism of Diclofenac

Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. Jan, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 19636551

The bacterium Actinoplanes sp. ATCC 53771 is known to perform drug metabolism of several xenobiotics similarly to humans. We identified a cytochrome P450 enzyme from this strain, CYP107E4, and expressed it in Escherichia coli using the pET101 vector. The purified enzyme showed the characteristic reduced-CO difference spectra with a peak at 450 nm, indicating the protein is produced in the active form with proper heme incorporation. The CYP107E4 enzyme was found to bind the drug diclofenac. Using redox enzymes from spinach, the reconstituted system is able to produce hydroxylated metabolites of diclofenac. Production of the human 4'-hydroxydiclofenac metabolite by CYP107E4 was confirmed, and a second hydroxylated metabolite was also produced.

Association of Immunosuppressant-induced Protein Changes in the Rat Kidney with Changes in Urine Metabolite Patterns: a Proteo-metabonomic Study

Journal of Proteome Research. Feb, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 19994912

The basic mechanisms underlying calcineurin inhibitor (CI) nephrotoxicity and its enhancement by sirolimus are still largely unknown. We investigated the effects of CIs alone and in combination with sirolimus on the renal proteome and correlated these effects with urine metabolite pattern changes. Thirty-six male Wistar rats were assigned to six treatment groups (n = 4/group for proteome analysis and n = 6/group for urine (1)H NMR metabolite pattern analysis): vehicle controls, sirolimus 1 mg/kg/day, cyclosporine 10 mg/kg/day, cyclosporine 10 mg/kg/day + sirolimus 1 mg/kg/day, tacrolimus 1 mg/kg/day, tacrolimus 1 mg/kg/day + sirolimus 1 mg/kg/day. After 28 days, 24 h-urine was collected for (1)H NMR-based metabolic analysis and kidneys were harvested for 2D-gel electrophoresis and histology. Cyclosporine affected the following groups of proteins: calcium homeostasis (regucalcin, calbindin), cytoskeleton (vimentin, caldesmon), response to hypoxia and mitochondrial function (prolyl 4-hydroxylase, proteasome, NADH dehydrogenase), and cell metabolism (kidney aminoacylase, pyruvate dehydrogenase, fructose-1,6-bis phosphate). Several of the changes in protein expression, confirmed by Western blot, were associated with and explained changes in metabolite concentrations in urine. Representative examples are an increase in kidney aminoacylase expression (decrease of hippurate concentrations in urine), up regulation of pyruvate dehydrogenase and fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase, (increased glucose metabolism), and down regulation of arginine/glycine-amidino transferase (most likely due to an increase in creatinine concentrations). Protein changes explained and qualified immunosuppressant-induced metabolite pattern changes in urine.

Immunosuppressant Neurotoxicity in Rat Brain Models: Oxidative Stress and Cellular Metabolism

Chemical Research in Toxicology. Mar, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20148532

Coadministration of the calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine (CsA) and the mTOR inhibitors sirolimus (SRL) or everolimus (RAD) increases the efficacy of immunosuppression after organ transplantation. Neurotoxicity of CsA is a major clinical problem. Our goal was to assess the effects of CsA, SRL, and RAD on brain cell metabolism. The studies included the comparison of immunosuppressant-mediated effects on glucose metabolism, energy production, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation in perfused rat brain slices, primary rat astrocytes, and C6 glioma cells. In brain slices and astrocytes, CsA inhibited Krebs cycle metabolism, while activating anaerobic glycolysis, most likely to compensate for the inhibition of mitochondrial energy production. SRL and RAD inhibited cytosolic glycolysis but did not cause changes in mitochondrial energy production. CsA + SRL inhibited Krebs cycle and glycolysis, thus reducing the ability of the cell to compensate for the negative effects of CsA on mitochondrial nucleoside triphosphate synthesis. In contrast to SRL at the concentrations tested, RAD reduced the CsA-induced ROS formation and antagonized CsA-induced effects on glucose and energy metabolism. Surprisingly, in C6 cells, SRL and RAD exposure resulted in high ROS concentrations without significant impairment of cell metabolism. Our results suggested that SRL enhances CsA-induced ROS formation and negative metabolic effects in brain cells, while RAD seems to antagonize the CsA effects. However, the three models showed different metabolic responses when challenged with the study drugs. In contrast to SRL, RAD enhances ROS formation in C6 glioma cells but has only minor effects on normal rat brain tissue.

Bioequivalence Testing of Immunosuppressants: Concepts and Misconceptions

Kidney International. Supplement. Mar, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20150904

Immunosuppressants are considered critical dose/narrow therapeutic index drugs and there is the lingering suspicion among physicians and patients that generic versions may differ in quality and therapeutic efficacy from the brand name drug. The innovator's and the generic active drug molecule are exactly the same and are produced following exactly the same tight rules of good manufacturing practice. Upon oral administration, the drug molecule separates from the formulation and passes the membranes of gut mucosa cells; from this point on, the formulation has no influence on the kinetics of a drug and its biological effects. As formulations may differ, bioequivalence testing in healthy volunteer studies establishes equal relative oral bioavailability. Due to the number of patients required to achieve sufficient statistical power, to test the therapeutic equivalence of two formulations of the same drug with the same bioavailability is an unrealistic goal. An often overlooked fact is that the approval by drug regulatory agencies of several post-approval versions of the innovators' immunosuppressants is based on the identical guidelines used for approval of generics. The FDA has issued specific guidelines describing the requirements for approval of generic versions of tacrolimus, sirolimus, and mycophenolic acid. The standard average bioequivalence approach is recommended and in the cases of tacrolimus and sirolimus, the effect of food should also be tested. No studies in the patient population are requested. Immunosuppressants are not regarded as drugs that require a special status to establish bioequivalence between generic and the innovator's versions.

Effects of Lovastatin on Breast Cancer Cells: a Proteo-metabonomic Study

Breast Cancer Research : BCR. 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20205716

Statins are cholesterol-lowering drugs with pleiotropic activities including inhibition of isoprenylation and reduction of signals driving cell proliferation and survival responses.

Characterization of Potential Allergens in Fenugreek (Trigonella Foenum-graecum) Using Patient Sera and MS-based Proteomic Analysis

Journal of Proteomics. May, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20219717

Fenugreek is a legume plant used as an ingredient of curry spice. Incidents of IgE-mediated food allergy to fenugreek have been reported. Coincidence with allergy to peanut, a major food allergen, seems to be common suggesting a rather high rate of cross-reactivity.

Polymer-free Biolimus A9-coated Stent Demonstrates More Sustained Intimal Inhibition, Improved Healing, and Reduced Inflammation Compared with a Polymer-coated Sirolimus-eluting Cypher Stent in a Porcine Model

Circulation. Cardiovascular Interventions. Apr, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20407114

Drug-eluting stents effectively reduce restenosis but may increase late thrombosis and delayed restenosis. Persistent polymer, the drug, or a combination of both could be responsible. Local delivery of Biolimus A9, a rapamycin derivative, from a polymer-free BioFreedom stent (Biosensors International) may prevent these complications.

Continuous Administration of a Selective Alpha7 Nicotinic Partial Agonist, DMXBA, Improves Sensory Inhibition Without Causing Tachyphylaxis or Receptor Upregulation in DBA/2 Mice

Brain Research. Sep, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20599427

Stimulation of nicotinic receptors, specifically the alpha7 subtype, improves sensory inhibition and cognitive function in receptor deficient humans and rodents. However, stimulation with a full agonist, such as nicotine, produces rapid tachyphylaxis of the P20N40-measured sensory inhibition process. 3-(2,4-dimethoxybenzylidine) anabaseine (DMXBA, also GTS-21) selectively activates the alpha7 nicotinic receptor, and in acute administration studies, has been shown to improve deficient sensory inhibition in both humans and rodents with repeated dosing. Unlike nicotine, this partial agonist acted without inducing tachyphylaxis. Here, we assessed the ability of DMXBA to improve sensory inhibition in DBA/2 mice after 7 days of continuous administration via a subcutaneously implanted osmotic minipump. When assessed on day 8, mice receiving saline showed the characteristic deficient sensory inhibition seen with untreated DBA/2 mice. The 25- and 50-mg/ml infusion concentrations of DMXBA, but not the 100-mg/ml, produced significantly improved sensory inhibition in the mice, exclusively through a decrease in test amplitude. No concentration significantly upregulated hippocampal alpha7 receptor levels. DMXBA levels in the brain were higher than plasma at 2 of the 3 concentrations infused. These data suggest that continuous exposure to DMXBA does not significantly affect the underlying responsiveness of the sensory inhibition pathway to this partial agonist, nor cause receptor upregulation, at these relatively low brain concentrations. The ability of DMXBA to maintain its effectiveness during constant administration conditions may be due to an ability to activate alpha7 receptors at low concentrations, and consequently low fractional occupancy of the five possible binding sites on this homomeric receptor.

Toxicodynamic Effects of Ciclosporin Are Reflected by Metabolite Profiles in the Urine of Healthy Individuals After a Single Dose

British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. Aug, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20653677

WHAT IS ALREADY KNOWN ABOUT THE SUBJECT * Ciclosporin's nephrotoxicity initially targets the proximal tubule and is, at least in part, driven by increased formation of oxygen radicals. * (1)H-nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR)- and mass spectrometry (MS)-based biochemical profiling (metabolomics) allows for the sensitive detection of metabolite pattern changes in urine. * In systematic studies in rats we showed that ciclosporin caused urine metabolite pattern changes typical for proximal tubule damage and that these pattern changes seemed to be more sensitive than established clinical kidney function markers such as serum creatinine concentrations. WHAT THIS PAPER ADDS * This study showed that urine metabolite pattern changes as assessed by (1)H-NMR and HPLC-MS are sensitive enough to detect the effect of ciclosporin as early as 4 h after a single oral dose. * In our previous rat studies, changes in urine metabolite pattern in response to ciclosporin translated into healthy humans, indicating the involvement of the same toxicodynamic mechanisms. * The results provide proof of concept for further development of this combination molecular marker strategy into diagnostic tools for the detection and monitoring of drug nephrotoxicity. AIMS The immunosuppressant ciclosporin is an efficient prophylaxis against transplant organ rejection but its clinical use is limited by its nephrotoxicity. Our previous systematic studies in the rat indicated urine metabolite pattern changes to be sensitive indicators of the negative effects of ciclosporin on the kidney. To translate these results, we conducted an open label, placebo-controlled, crossover study assessing the time-dependent toxicodynamic effects of a single oral ciclosporin dose (5 mg kg(-1)) on the kidney in 13 healthy individuals. METHODS In plasma and urine samples, ciclosporin and 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations were assessed using HPLC-MS and metabolite profiles using (1)H-NMR spectroscopy. RESULTS The maximum ciclosporin concentrations were 1489 +/- 425 ng ml(-1) (blood) and 2629 +/- 1308 ng ml(-1) (urine). The increase in urinary 15-F(2t)-isoprostane observed 4 h after administration of ciclosporin indicated an increase in oxidative stress. 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations were on average 2.9-fold higher after ciclosporin than after placebo (59.8 +/- 31.2 vs. 20.9 +/- 19.9 pg mg(-1) creatinine, P < 0.02). While there were no conclusive changes in plasma 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations or metabolite patterns, non-targeted metabolome analysis using principal components analysis and partial least square fit analysis revealed significant changes in urine metabolites typically associated with negative effects on proximal tubule cells. The major metabolites that differed between the 4 h urine samples after ciclosporin and placebo were citrate, hippurate, lactate, TMAO, creatinine and phenylalanine. CONCLUSION Changes in urine metabolite patterns as a molecular marker are sufficiently sensitive for the detection of the negative effects of ciclosporin on the kidney after a single oral dose.

Opioid Pharmacogenomics Using a Twin Study Paradigm: Methods and Procedures for Determining Familial Aggregation and Heritability

Twin Research and Human Genetics : the Official Journal of the International Society for Twin Studies. Oct, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 20874462

Opioids are the cornerstone medication for the treatment of moderate to severe pain. However, analgesic opioid requirements and the propensity to suffer from aversive opioid effects, including fatal respiratory depression and addiction, vary widely among patients. The factors underlying the substantial response variance remain largely unknown and need clarification for using opioids more effectively in appropriately selected patients. This ongoing study takes advantage of the twin paradigm to estimate the genetic and environmental contributions to inter-individual differences in opioid responses. Evidence of significant heritability will justify more detailed and extensive genomic studies. The enrollment target is 80 monozygotic and 45 dizygotic twin pairs who undergo a target-controlled infusion of the opioid alfentanil and saline placebo in sequential but randomized order. In a laboratory-type setting, well-defined pharmacodynamic endpoints are measured to quantify pain sensitivity, analgesic opioid effects, and aversive opioid effects including respiratory depression, sedation and reinforcing affective responses. First results obtained in 159 participants provide evidence for the feasibility and utility of this interventional study paradigm to estimate familial aggregation and heritability components of relevant drug effects. Areas highlighted in this report include recruitment strategies, required infrastructure and personnel, selection of relevant outcome measures, drug infusion algorithm minimizing pharmacokinetic variability, and considerations for optimizing data quality and quantity without hampering feasibility. Applying the twin paradigm to complex and potentially harmful studies comprehensively characterizing pharmacological response profiles is without much precedent. Methods and first results including heritability estimates for heat and cold pain sensitivity should be of interest to investigators considering similar studies.

Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled, Single Intravenous Dose-escalation Study to Evaluate the Safety, Tolerability, and Pharmacokinetics of the Novel Coronary Smooth Muscle Cell Proliferation Inhibitor Biolimus A9 in Healthy Individuals

Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 20305057

Biolimus A9 (BA9) is a novel proliferation inhibitor of coronary smooth muscle cells that has been specifically designed for coating drug-eluting stents. The goals of this study were to identify the highest safe intravenous dose of BA9, to evaluate the dose-dependent pharmacokinetics of BA9 after intravenous administration in humans, and to characterize early clinical symptoms of BA9 toxicity in healthy subjects. This phase 1 trial in healthy subjects was designed as a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, ascending single-dose study. After screening and randomization, 28 volunteers received either placebo (n = 7) or BA9 (n = 21) in a double-blinded fashion. Doses from 0.0075 mg/kg were escalated to 0.25 mg/kg in 4 cohorts. BA9 concentrations were measured using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. BA9 doses up to 0.075 mg/kg were well tolerated. Only the highest BA9 dose of 0.25 mg/kg produced reversible drug-related adverse events. The most frequent adverse events were headache, nausea, and mouth ulcers, most likely due to immunosuppression. Exposure to BA9 did not result in electrocardiographic or clinical laboratory changes. BA9 had a terminal half-life of 90.0 ± 40.0 hours (all n = 21, mean ± standard deviation), an apparent clearance from blood of 0.96 ± 1.07 L/kg/h, and a volume of distribution of 96.5 ± 72.6 L/kg.

The Pharmacokinetics of Biolimus A9 After Elution from the BioMatrix II Stent in Patients with Coronary Artery Disease: the Stealth PK Study

European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 20963405

This prospective, open-label multicenter study was conducted to assess the pharmacokinetics of Biolimus A9 after elution from BioMatrix II coronary stents. Recent clinical trials have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of Biolimus A9 eluted from different stent platforms. To date, the pharmacokinetics of Biolimus A9 in patients following the deployment of BioMatrix II stents has not yet been studied

Age and Sex Differences in the Effects of the Immunosuppressants Cyclosporine, Sirolimus and Everolimus on Rat Brain Metabolism

Neurotoxicology. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21075140

Application of the widely used immunosuppressant (ISS) cyclosporine (CsA) is severely limited by a number of serious side-effects such as kidney and neurotoxicity. As we have shown before, CsA exhibits metabolic toxicity in brain-models. The macrolide ISSs sirolimus (SRL) and everolimus (RAD) are capable of modulating these CsA-induced effects. It was our aim to study the age-dependent metabolic changes in the rat brain after ISS-treatment and the possible role of the blood-brain-barrier in modulation of CsA metabolic toxicity. Young and adult rats were treated orally with one ISS alone or in combination with CsA for six days. Metabolic changes were assessed by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy of brain extracts as toxicodynamic endpoints. Brain P-glycoprotein (P-gp) and ISS concentrations were determined as pharmacokinetic endpoints. Young rats were more susceptible to CsA-induced inhibition of the Krebs cycle (glutamate: 78% of controls, glutamine: 82%, GABA: 71% in young vs. 85%, 89%, 92% in adult rats). Increased glycolysis after CsA-treatment was sufficient to maintain the energy state at control levels in adult brains, but not in the young rat brains (phosphocreatine: 35%). Tissue concentrations of CsA and SRL within the brain of young rats were three-fold higher, while concentrations of P-gp were three-fold higher in adult rat brains. Our results suggest that age-dependent differences in the blood-brain barrier led to increased ISS brain concentrations and hence inhibition of brain energy metabolism.

Urinary Catalytic Iron in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Without Microalbuminuria--a Substudy of the ACCORD Trial

Clinical Chemistry. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21159897

Interpreting Mammalian Target of Rapamycin and Cell Growth Inhibition in a Genetically Engineered Mouse Model of Nf1-deficient Astrocytes

Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21216928

The identification of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) as a major mediator of neurofibromatosis-1 (NF1) tumor growth has led to the initiation of clinical trials using rapamycin analogs. Previous studies from our laboratory have shown that durable responses to rapamycin treatment in a genetically engineered mouse model of Nf1 optic glioma require 20 mg/kg/day, whereas only transient tumor growth suppression was observed with 5 mg/kg/day rapamycin despite complete silencing of ribosomal S6 activity. To gain clinically relevant insights into the mechanism underlying this dose-dependent effect, we used Nf1-deficient glial cells in vitro and in vivo. First, there was an exponential relationship between blood and brain rapamycin levels. Second, we show that currently used biomarkers of mTOR pathway inhibition (phospho-S6, phospho-4EBP1, phospho-STAT3, and Jagged-1 levels) and tumor proliferation (Ki67) do not accurately reflect mTOR target inhibition or Nf1-deficient glial growth suppression. Third, the incomplete suppression of Nf1-deficient glial cell proliferation in vivo following 5 mg/kg/day rapamycin treatment reflects mTOR-mediated AKT activation, such that combined 5 mg/kg/day rapamycin and PI3-kinase (PI3K) inhibition or dual PI3K/mTOR inhibition recapitulates the growth suppressive effects of 20 mg/kg/day rapamycin. These new findings argue for the identification of more accurate biomarkers for rapamycin treatment response and provide reference preclinical data for comparing human rapamycin levels with target effects in the brain.

Pharmacokinetics of Single-dose Intravenous Ketorolac in Infants Aged 2-11 Months

Anesthesia and Analgesia. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21233498

Ketorolac is a parenterally available nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug that nonselectively inhibits cyclooxygenase. Ketorolac is an attractive alternative to opioids in the pediatric population because of its favorable side effect profile; it provides postoperative analgesia similar to morphine, but is associated with significantly less respiratory depression, pruritus, and emesis. Despite the efficacy of ketorolac in young patients, there are minimal data to characterize the pharmacokinetic variables of ketorolac in infants younger than 6 months.

Biomarkers of Immunosuppressant Organ Toxicity After Transplantation: Status, Concepts and Misconceptions

Expert Opinion on Drug Metabolism & Toxicology. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21241200

A major challenge in transplantation is improving long-term organ transplant and patient survival. Immunosuppressants protect the transplant organ from alloimmune reactions, but sometimes also exhibit limiting side effects. The key to improving long-term outcome following transplantation is the selection of the correct immunosuppressive regimen for an individual patient for minimizing toxicity while maintaining immunosuppressive efficacy.

Quantification of 15-F2t-isoprostane in Human Plasma and Urine: Results from Enzyme-linked Immunoassay and Liquid Chromatography/tandem Mass Spectrometry Cannot Be Compared

Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry : RCM. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21259353

Quantification of F(2)-isoprostanes is considered a reliable index of the oxidative stress status in vivo. Several immunoassays and chromatography/mass spectrometry-based assays are available for 15-F(2t)-isoprostane quantification. However, it remains unclear if results of immunoassays using different assays can be compared with those of liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) assays. Previous studies comparing enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and more specific gas chromatography/mass spectrometry assays have already indicated that ELISAs may overestimate 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations in human plasma. Concentrations of 15-F(2t)-isoprostane in 25 human plasma and urine samples were measured by three commercially available ELISA assays (Assay Designs, Cayman Chemical and Oxford Biomedical Research) and compared with the concentrations measured with a validated, semi-automated high-throughput HPLC tandem mass spectrometry assay (LC/LC-MS/MS). All three ELISAs measured substantially higher 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations (2.1-182.2-fold higher in plasma; 0.4-61.9-fold higher in urine) than LC/LC-MS/MS. Utilization of solid-phase extraction (SPE) columns, especially isoprostane affinity purification columns, brought ELISA isoprostane urine concentrations closer to the LC/LC-MS/MS results. However, SPE did not have much of an effect on ELISA plasma concentrations which remained significantly higher than corresponding LC/LC-MS/MS results. A poor correlation not only between LC/LC-MS/MS and immunoassay results, but also among the immunoassays was found. Especially in plasma, ELISAs grossly overestimate 15-F(2t)-isoprostane concentrations and are not comparable with each other or with LC/LC-MS/MS. It is most disturbing that a sample with relatively high concentrations measured with one ELISA may show low concentrations with another ELISA, and vice versa, potentially affecting the conclusions drawn from such data. The use of specific mass spectrometry-based assays seems advisable.

Liquid Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry in Food Allergen Detection

Journal of Food Protection. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21333155

Food allergy is an important issue in the field of food safety because of the hazards for affected persons and the hygiene requirements and legal regulations imposed on the food industry. Consumer protection and law enforcement require suitable analytical techniques for the detection of allergens in foods. Immunological methods are currently preferred; however, confirmatory alternatives are needed. The determination of allergenic proteins by liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry has greatly advanced in recent years, and gel-free allergenomics is becoming a routinely used approach for the identification and quantitation of food allergens. The present review provides a brief overview of the principles of proteomic procedures, various chromatographic set ups, and mass spectrometry instrumentation used in allergenomics. A compendium of published liquid chromatography methods, proteomic analyses, typical marker peptides, and quantitative assays for 14 main allergy-causing foods is also included.

A Sensitive Assay for the Quantification of Morphine and Its Active Metabolites in Human Plasma and Dried Blood Spots Using High-performance Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry

Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21400080

Opioids such as morphine are the cornerstone of pain treatment. The challenge of measuring the concentrations of morphine and its active metabolites in order to assess human pharmacokinetics and monitor therapeutic drugs in children requires assays with high sensitivity in small blood volumes. We developed and validated a semi-automated LC-MS/MS assay for the simultaneous quantification of morphine and its active metabolites morphine 3β-glucuronide (M3G) and morphine 6β-glucuronide (M6G) in human plasma and in dried blood spots (DBS). Reconstitution in water (DBS only) and addition of a protein precipitation solution containing the internal standards were the only manual steps. Morphine and its metabolites were separated on a Kinetex 2.6-μm PFP analytical column using an acetonitrile/0.1% formic acid gradient. The analytes were detected in the positive multiple reaction mode. In plasma, the assay had the following performance characteristics: range of reliable response of 0.25-1000 ng/mL (r(2) > 0.99) for morphine, 1-1,000 ng/mL (r(2) > 0.99) for M3G, and 2.5-1,000 ng/mL for M6G. In DBS, the assay had a range of reliable response of 1-1,000 ng/mL (r(2) > 0.99) for morphine and M3G, and of 2.5-1,000 ng/mL for M6G. For inter-day accuracy and precision for morphine, M3G and M6G were within 15% of the nominal values in both plasma and DBS. There was no carryover, ion suppression, or matrix interferences. The assay fulfilled all predefined acceptance criteria, and its sensitivity using DBS samples was adequate for the measurement of pediatric pharmacokinetic samples using a small blood of only 20-50 μL.

How Unbiased is Non-targeted Metabolomics and is Targeted Pathway Screening the Solution?

Current Pharmaceutical Biotechnology. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21466457

Metabolomics is only truly unbiased if the whole metabolome is captured. Current metabolomics technologies capture only a part of the metabolome and therefore produce inherently biased results. Important factors that introduce such bias into a metabolomic analysis may include but are not limited to, timing of sample collection, the sample collection procedure, sample processing, stabilization, stability and storage, extraction procedures, dilution of sample, type and number of analytical methods used, preferences of analytical assays for metabolites with certain physico-chemical properties, ion suppression (LC-MS), derivatization (GC-MS), sensitivity of the assay, range of reliable response and the ability to allow at least for semi-quantitative comparison. Consideration of the many computational, chemometric and biostatistical steps required to link changes in metabolite patterns to metabolic pathways and the additional bias and risks that these steps entail, brings up the question of whether or not screening for changes in known metabolic pathways using a set of validated, quantitative multiplexing LC-MS assays (targeted pathway screening, TAPAS) would be a more robust and reliable approach. Instead of non-selectively screening for changes in metabolite patterns, TAPAS screens for changes in metabolic pathways. Since such assays are designed for specific groups of metabolites, TAPAS can cover a larger number of metabolic pathways including metabolites of a wide variety of physicochemical properties and concentration ranges and thus, although based on suite of targeted assays, TAPAS may ultimately be a less biased strategy than current non-targeted metabolomics technologies.

Bezielle (BZL101)-induced Oxidative Stress Damage Followed by Redistribution of Metabolic Fluxes in Breast Cancer Cells: a Combined Proteomic and Metabolomic Study

International Journal of Cancer. Journal International Du Cancer. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21509784

Bezielle is an orally administered aqueous extract of Scutellaria barbata for treatment of advanced and metastatic breast cancer. Phase I trials showed promising tolerability and efficacy. In our study, we used a combined proteomic-metabolomic approach to investigate the molecular pathways affected by Bezielle in ER-positive BT474 and ER-negative SKBR3 cell lines. In both, Bezielle inhibited cell proliferation, induced cell death and G2 cycle arrest by regulating the mediator proteins Jab1, p27(Kip1) and p21(Cip1) . In addition, it stimulated reactive oxygen species production, hyperactivation of PARP and inhibition of glycolysis. Bezielle's ability to induce oxidative stress was associated with the changes in expression of redox potential maintaining enzymes: glutathione- and thioredoxin-related proteins and peroxiredoxins. In regards to cell metabolism, decreased expression of α-enolase was associated with a reduction of de novo (13) C-lactate formation. Reduced Krebs cycle activity as evidenced by the reduced expression of α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase and succinyl-CoA synthetase led to decreased intracellular succinate concentrations. By inhibiting glucose metabolism, cells reacted by lowering the expression of glucose transporters and resulting in decreased intracellular glucose concentration. Decreased expression of fatty acid synthase and reduced concentration of phosphocholine indicated considerable changes in phospholipid metabolism. Ultimately, by inhibiting the major energy-producing pathways, Bezielle caused depletion of ATP and NAD(H). Both cell lines were responsive, thus suggesting that Bezielle has the potential to be effective against ER-negative breast cancers. In conclusion, Bezielle's cytotoxicity toward cancer cells is primarily based on inhibition of metabolic pathways that are preferentially activated in tumor cells thus explaining its specificity for cancer cells.

Structural Identification of SAR-943 Metabolites Generated by Human Liver Microsomes in Vitro Using Mass Spectrometry in Combination with Analysis of Fragmentation Patterns

Journal of Mass Spectrometry : JMS. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21671437

SAR-943 (32-deoxo rapamycin) is a proliferation signal inhibitor via interaction with the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR). Most importantly, SAR-943 has improved chemical stability compared to rapamycin (sirolimus) and is currently under investigation as a drug coated on coronary stents. It was the goal of this study to identify the SAR-943 metabolites generated after incubation with human liver microsomes using high-resolution mass spectrometry (MS) and MS/iontrap (MS(n)) and comparison of fragmentation patterns of the metabolites with those of SAR-943 and other known rapamycin derivatives. Our study showed that SAR-943 is mainly hydroxylated and/or demethylated by human liver microsomes. The structures of the following metabolites were identified: O-demethylated metabolites: 39-O-desmethyl, 16-O-desmethyl and 27-O-desmethyl SAR-943; hydroxylated metabolites: hydroxy piperidine SAR-943, 11-hydroxy, 12-hydroxy, 14-hydroxy, 23-hydroxy, 24-hydroxy, 25-hydroxy, 46-hydroxy and 49-hydroxy SAR-943; didemethylated metabolites: 16,39-O-didesmethyl and 27,39-O-didesmethyl SAR-943; demethylated-hydroxylated metabolites: 39-O-desmethyl, 23- or 24-hydroxy and 39-O-desmethyl, hydroxy piperidine SAR-943 and dihydroxylated metabolites: 12-,23- or 24-dihydroxy SAR-943. In addition, several other demethylated-hydroxylated and dihydroxylated metabolites were detected. However, their exact structures could not be identified.

A Low Blood Volume LC-MS/MS Assay for the Quantification of Fentanyl and Its Major Metabolites Norfentanyl and Despropionyl Fentanyl in Children

Journal of Separation Science. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21916010

Preterm and term neonates often require surgical procedures and analgesia. However, our knowledge about neonatal pharmacokinetics of fentanyl, the most commonly used drug for these procedures, and its metabolites is still incomplete. To facilitate pharmacokinetic studies of fentanyl and its metabolites in neonates and other children, we developed and validated an LC-MS/MS method based on minimally invasive, low blood volume sampling. LC-MS/MS was used for the simultaneous analysis of fentanyl, despropionyl fentanyl (DPF), and norfentanyl from dried blood samples (DBS) collected on filter paper. Positive ions were monitored using multiple reaction monitoring. Since the standard matrix for measuring fentanyl blood concentrations is plasma, the assay was developed and validated in plasma, whole blood, and then DBS. Our method was able to measure clinically relevant levels of fentanyl and its metabolites. In DBS, the lower limits of quantification were 100 pg/mL for fentanyl with a range of reliable response from 0.1 to 100 ng/mL (r(2)>0.99) and 250 pg/mL for both DPF and norfentanyl with a range of reliable response from 0.25 to 100 ng/mL (r(2)>0.99). In plasma and in DBS inter-day accuracy and precisions of fentanyl met predefined acceptance criteria and also indicated comparable assay performance in both matrices.

A High-throughput U-HPLC-MS/MS Assay for the Quantification of Mycophenolic Acid and Its Major Metabolites Mycophenolic Acid Glucuronide and Mycophenolic Acid Acyl-glucuronide in Human Plasma and Urine

Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21839692

Mycophenolic acid (MPA) is used as an immunosuppressant after organ transplantation and for the treatment of immune diseases. There is increasing evidence that therapeutic drug monitoring and plasma concentration-guided dose adjustments are beneficial for patients to maintain immunosuppressive efficacy and to avoid toxicity. The major MPA metabolite that can be found in high concentrations in plasma is MPA glucuronide (MPAG). A metabolite usually present at lower concentrations, MPA acyl-glucuronide (AcMPAG), has been implicated in some of the adverse effects of MPA. We developed and validated an automated high-throughput ultra-high performance chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (U-HPLC-MS/MS) assay using liquid-handling robotic extraction for the quantification of MPA, MPAG, and AcMPAG in human EDTA plasma and urine. The ranges of reliable response were 0.097 (lower limit of quantitation) to 200 μg/mL for MPA and MPAG and 0.156-10 μg/mL for AcMPAG in human urine and plasma. The inter-day accuracies were 94.3-104.4%, 93.8-105.0% and 94.4-104.7% for MPA, MPAG and AcMPAG, respectively. Inter-day precisions were 0.7-7.8%, 0.9-6.9% and 1.6-8.6% for MPA, MPAG and AcMPAG. No matrix interferences, ion suppression/enhancement and carry-over were detected. The total assay run time was 2.3 min. The assay met all predefined acceptance criteria and the quantification of MPA was successfully cross-validated with an LC-MS/MS assay routinely used for clinical therapeutic drug monitoring. The assay has proven to be robust and reliable during the measurement of samples from several pharmacokinetics trials.

Influence of SLCO1B1 Polymorphisms on the Drug-drug Interaction Between Darunavir/ritonavir and Pravastatin

Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. Nov, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22174437

The authors investigated whether SLCO1B1 polymorphisms contribute to variability in pravastatin pharmacokinetics when pravastatin is administered alone versus with darunavir/ritonavir. HIV-negative healthy participants were prospectively enrolled on the basis of SLCO1B1 diplotype: group 1 (*1A/*1A, n = 9); group 2 (*1A/*1B, n = 10; or *1B/*1B, n = 2); and group 3 (*1A/*15, n = 1; *1B/*15, n = 5; or *1B/*17, n = 1). Participants received pravastatin (40 mg) daily on days 1 through 4, washout on days 5 through 11, darunavir/ritonavir (600/100 mg) twice daily on days 12 through 18, with pravastatin 40 mg added back on days 15 through 18. Pharmacokinetic studies were conducted on day 4 (pravastatin alone) and day 18 (pravastatin + darunavir/ritonavir). Pravastatin area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC(tau)) was 21% higher during administration with darunavir/ritonavir compared with pravastatin alone; however, this difference was not statistically significant (P = .11). Group 3 variants had 96% higher pravastatin AUC(tau) on day 4 and 113% higher pravastatin AUC(tau) on day 18 compared with group 1. The relative change in pravastatin pharmacokinetics was largest in group 3 but did not differ significantly between diplotype groups. In sum, the influence of SLCO1B1*15 and *17 haplotypes on pravastatin pharmacokinetics was maintained in the presence of darunavir/ritonavir. Because OATP1B1 inhibition would be expected to be greater in carriers of normal or high-functioning SLCO1B1 haplotypes, these findings suggest that darunavir/ritonavir is not a potent inhibitor of OATP1B1-mediated pravastatin transport in vivo.

Equilibrative Nucleoside Transporter 1 (ENT1) Regulates Postischemic Blood Flow During Acute Kidney Injury in Mice

The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22269324

A complex biologic network regulates kidney perfusion under physiologic conditions. This system is profoundly perturbed following renal ischemia, a leading cause of acute kidney injury (AKI) - a life-threatening condition that frequently complicates the care of hospitalized patients. Therapeutic approaches to prevent and treat AKI are extremely limited. Better understanding of the molecular pathways promoting postischemic reflow could provide new candidate targets for AKI therapeutics. Due to its role in adapting tissues to hypoxia, we hypothesized that extracellular adenosine has a regulatory function in the postischemic control of renal perfusion. Consistent with the notion that equilibrative nucleoside transporters (ENTs) terminate adenosine signaling, we observed that pharmacologic ENT inhibition in mice elevated renal adenosine levels and dampened AKI. Deletion of the ENTs resulted in selective protection in Ent1-/- mice. Comprehensive examination of adenosine receptor-knockout mice exposed to AKI demonstrated that renal protection by ENT inhibitors involves the A2B adenosine receptor. Indeed, crosstalk between renal Ent1 and Adora2b expressed on vascular endothelia effectively prevented a postischemic no-reflow phenomenon. These studies identify ENT1 and adenosine receptors as key to the process of reestablishing renal perfusion following ischemic AKI. If translatable from mice to humans, these data have important therapeutic implications.

MF101: a Multi-component Botanical Selective Estrogen Receptor Beta Modulator for the Treatment of Menopausal Vasomotor Symptoms

Expert Opinion on Investigational Drugs. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22616988

The Women's Health Initiative Estrogen Plus Progestin clinical trial demonstrated the risks exceeded the benefits which have led to a decline in menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) by greater than 50%. MHT use was initiated long before there was a significant understanding of the molecular mechanisms of estrogens. It has become clear that the problem with the current estrogens in MHT is they act non-selectively as an agonist in all tissues that contain estrogen receptors. MF101 is an oral, botanically derived extract that was designed to selectively regulate estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) because the increased risk of breast and endometrial cancer is due to the activation of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) by estrogens. Preclinical and clinical data support a role for selective ERβ agonists, such as MF101, for vasomotor symptoms without increasing cancer risks.

Low-salt Diet and Cyclosporine Nephrotoxicity: Changes in Kidney Cell Metabolism

Journal of Proteome Research. Nov, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23057591

Cyclosporine (CsA) is a highly effective immunosuppressant used in patients after transplantation; however, its use is limited by nephrotoxicity. Salt depletion is known to enhance CsA-induced nephrotoxicity in the rat, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are not completely understood. The goal of our study was to identify the molecular effects of salt depletion alone and in combination with CsA on the kidney using a proteo-metabolomic strategy. Rats (n = 6) were assigned to four study groups: (1) normal controls, (2) low-salt fed controls, (3) 10 mg/kg/d CsA for 28 days on a normal diet, (4) 10 mg/kg/d CsA for 28 days on low-salt diet. Low-salt diet redirected kidney energy metabolism toward mitochondria as indicated by a higher energy charge than in normal-fed controls. Low-salt diet alone reduced phospho-AKT and phospho-STAT3 levels and changed the expression of ion transporters PDZK1 and CLIC1. CsA induced macro- and microvesicular tubular epithelial vacuolization and reduced energy charge, changes that were more significant in low-salt fed animals, probably because of their more pronounced dependence on mitochondria. Here, CsA increased phospho-JAK2 and phospho-STAT3 levels and reduced the phospho-IKKγ and p65 proteins, thus activating NF-κB signaling. Decreased expression of lactate transport regulator CD147 and phospho-AKT was also observed after CsA exposure in low-salt rats, indicating a decrease in glycolysis. In summary, our study suggests a key role for PDZK1, CD147, JAK/STAT, and AKT signaling in CsA-induced nephrotoxicity and proposes mechanistic explanations on why rats fed a low-salt diet have higher sensitivity to CsA.

Everolimus and Sirolimus in Combination with Cyclosporine Have Different Effects on Renal Metabolism in the Rat

PloS One. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23118926

Enhancement of calcineurin inhibitor nephrotoxicity by sirolimus (SRL) is limiting the clinical use of this drug combination. We compared the dose-dependent effects of the structurally related everolimus (EVL) and sirolimus (SRL) alone, and in combination with cyclosporine (CsA), on the rat kidney. Lewis rats were treated by oral gavage for 28 days using a checkerboard dosing format (0, 3.0, 6.0 and 10.0 CsA and 0, 0.5, 1.5 and 3.0 mg/kg/day SRL or EVL, n = 4/dose combination). After 28 days, oxidative stress, energy charge, kidney histologies, glomerular filtration rates, and concentrations of the immunosuppressants were measured along with (1)H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and gas chromatography- mass spectrometry profiles of cellular metabolites in urine. The combination of CsA with SRL led to higher urinary glucose concentrations and decreased levels of urinary Krebs cycle metabolites when compared to controls, suggesting that CsA+SRL negatively impacted proximal tubule metabolism. Unsupervised principal component analysis of MRS spectra distinguished unique urine metabolite patterns of rats treated with CsA+SRL from those treated with CsA+EVL and the controls. SRL, but not EVL blood concentrations were inversely correlated with urine Krebs cycle metabolite concentrations. Interestingly, the higher the EVL concentration, the closer urine metabolite patterns resembled those of controls, while in contrast, the combination of the highest doses of CsA+SRL showed the most significant differences in metabolite patterns. Surprisingly in this rat model, EVL and SRL in combination with CsA had different effects on kidney biochemistry, suggesting that further exploration of EVL in combination with low dose calcineurin inhibitors may be of potential benefit.

Fibronectin-integrin Signaling is Required for L-glutamine's Protection Against Gut Injury

PloS One. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23185570

Extracellular matrix (ECM) stabilization and fibronectin (FN)-Integrin signaling can mediate cellular protection. L-glutamine (GLN) is known to prevent apoptosis after injury. However, it is currently unknown if ECM stabilization and FN-Integrin osmosensing pathways are related to GLN's cell protective mechanism in the intestine.

Mass Spectrometry-Based Multiplexing for the Analysis of Biomarkers in Drug Development and Clinical Diagnostics- How Much is Too Much?

Microchemical Journal, Devoted to the Application of Microtechniques in All Branches of Science. Nov, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23645936

Biomarkers, or more specifically molecular markers, can detect biochemical changes associated with disease processes and drug effects before histopathological and pathophysiological changes occur. Multiplexing technologies such as high-performance liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC-MS) allow for the measurement of molecular marker patterns that confer significantly more information than the measurement of a single parameter alone. The use of multiplexing assays for drug development, and as diagnostic tools, is attractive but will require regulatory review and approval and thus requires validation following regulatory guidances. Multiplexing assays always constitute a compromise. The number of analytes that can reasonably be included in a mass spectrometry-based multiplexing assay depend on the physico-chemical properties of the analytes and their integration into a single assay in terms of extraction, HPLC separation, ionization conditions and mass spectrometry detection. Another aspect includes biomedical considerations such as the differences in physiological concentrations of analytes, the required concentration range, and how much variability is acceptable before the clinical utility of a marker is negatively affected. Regulatory considerations include validation and quality control during sample analysis. Current bioanalytical regulatory guidelines have mostly been developed for single drug compounds and are not always adequate for multiplexing molecular marker assays that often quantify endogenous compounds. Specific guidances for multiplexing assays should be developed. Even if it is possible to integrate a wide variety and large number of analytes into a multiplexing assay, it should always be taken into consideration that a set of shorter, more specialized assays, may offer a more manageable and efficient alternative.

Neurobehavioural Activation During Peripheral Immunosuppression

The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology / Official Scientific Journal of the Collegium Internationale Neuropsychopharmacologicum (CINP). Feb, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 22217400

Like other physiological responses, immune functions are the subject of behavioural conditioning. Conditioned immunosuppression can be induced by contingently pairing a novel taste with an injection of the immunosuppressant cyclosporine A (CsA) in an associative learning paradigm. This learned immunosuppression is centrally mediated by the insular cortex and the amygdala. However, the afferent mechanisms by which the brain detects CsA are not understood. In this study we analysed whether CsA is sensed via the chemosensitive vagus nerve or whether CsA directly acts on the brain. Our experiments revealed that a single peripheral administration of CsA increases neuronal activity in the insular cortex and the amygdala as evident from increased electric activity, c-Fos expression and amygdaloid noradrenaline release. However, this increased neuronal activity was not affected by prior vagal deafferentation but rather seems to partially be induced by direct action of CsA on cortico-amygdaloid structures and the chemosensitive brainstem regions area postrema and nucleus of the solitary tract. Together, these data indicate that CsA as an unconditioned stimulus may directly act on the brain by a still unknown transduction mechanism.

Association of DJ-1/PTEN/AKT- and ASK1/p38-mediated Cell Signalling with Ischaemic Cardiomyopathy

Cardiovascular Research. Jan, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23015639

Dilated cardiomyopathies from chronic ischaemia (ISCM) or idiopathic (IDCM) pathological mechanisms are accompanied by similar clinical symptoms but may differ in protein expression, cell metabolism, and signalling processes at the cellular level. Using a combination of proteomic and metabolomic profiling, we sought to decipher the relationships between the metabolism and cellular signalling pathways in human heart tissues collected from patients with ISCM, IDCM, and those without heart disease and dilation.

A Multi-center Phase Ib Study of Oxaliplatin (NSC#266046) in Combination with Fluorouracil and Leucovorin in Pediatric Patients with Advanced Solid Tumors

Pediatric Blood & Cancer. Feb, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23024067

Platinum agents have been used for a variety of cancers, including pivotal use in pediatric tumors for many years. Oxaliplatin, a third generation platinum, has a different side effect profile and may provide improved activity in pediatric cancers.

Concentration of Tacrolimus and Major Metabolites in Kidney Transplant Recipients As a Function of Diabetes Mellitus and Cytochrome P450 3A Gene Polymorphism

Xenobiotica; the Fate of Foreign Compounds in Biological Systems. Jul, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23278282

1. Disposition of tacrolimus and its major metabolites, 13-O-desmethyl tacrolimus and 15-O-desmethyl tacrolimus, was evaluated in stable kidney transplant recipients in relation to diabetes mellitus and genetic polymorphism of cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A. 2. Steady-state concentration-time profiles were obtained for 12-hour or 2-hour post-dose, in 20 (11 with diabetes) and 32 (24 with diabetes) patients, respectively. In addition, single nucleotide polymorphisms of the following genes: CYP3A4 (CYP3A4: CYP3A4*1B, -392A > G), 3A5 (CYP3A5: CYP3A5*3, 6986A > G) and P-glycoprotein (ABCB1: 3435C > T) were characterized. 3. Dose-normalized concentrations of tacrolimus or metabolites were higher in diabetic patients. CYP3A4*1B carriers and CYP3A5 expressers, independently or when assessed as a combined CYP3A4-3A5 genotype, had significantly lower dose-normalized pre-dose (C0/dose) and 2-hour post-dose (C2/dose) concentrations of tacrolimus and metabolites. Non-diabetic patients with at least one CYP3A4*1B and CYP3A5*1 allele had lower C0/dose as compared to the rest of the population. 4. Genetic polymorphism of CYP3A5 or CYP3A4 influence tacrolimus or metabolites dose-normalized concentrations but not metabolite to parent concentration ratios. The effect of diabetes on tacrolimus metabolism is subject to debate and requires a larger sample size of genetically stratified subjects.

Proteomics and Metabolomics in Renal Transplantation-quo Vadis?

Transplant International : Official Journal of the European Society for Organ Transplantation. Mar, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23350848

The improvement of long-term transplant organ and patient survival remains a critical challenge following kidney transplantation. Proteomics and biochemical profiling (metabolomics) may allow for the detection of early changes in cell signal transduction regulation and biochemistry with high sensitivity and specificity. Hence, these analytical strategies hold the promise to detect and monitor disease processes and drug effects before histopathological and pathophysiological changes occur. In addition, they will identify enriched populations and enable individualized drug therapy. However, proteomics and metabolomics have not yet lived up to such high expectations. Renal transplant patients are highly complex, making it difficult to establish cause-effect relationships between surrogate markers and disease processes. Appropriate study design, adequate sample handling, storage and processing, quality and reproducibility of bioanalytical multi-analyte assays, data analysis and interpretation, mechanistic verification, and clinical qualification (=establishment of sensitivity and specificity in adequately powered prospective clinical trials) are important factors for the success of molecular marker discovery and development in renal transplantation. However, a newly developed and appropriately qualified molecular marker can only be successful if it is realistic that it can be implemented in a clinical setting. The development of combinatorial markers with supporting software tools is an attractive goal.

Development and Validation of an LC-MS/MS Assay for the Quantification of the Trans-methylation Pathway Intermediates S-adenosylmethionine and S-adenosylhomocysteine in Human Plasma

Clinica Chimica Acta; International Journal of Clinical Chemistry. Jun, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23499573

Although increased levels of S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) and S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH) have been implicated as markers for renal and vascular dysfunction, until now there have been no studies investigating their association with clinical post-transplant events such as organ rejection and immunosuppressant nephrotoxicity.

Genetic and Structure-function Studies of Missense Mutations in Human Endothelial Lipase

PloS One. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23536757

Endothelial lipase (EL) plays a pivotal role in HDL metabolism. We sought to characterize EL and its interaction with HDL as well as its natural variants genetically, functionally and structurally. We screened our biethnic population sample (n = 802) for selected missense mutations (n = 5) and identified T111I as the only common variant. Multiple linear regression analyses in Hispanic subjects revealed an unexpected association between T111I and elevated LDL-C (p-value = 0.012) and total cholesterol (p-value = 0.004). We examined lipase activity of selected missense mutants (n = 10) and found different impacts on EL function, ranging from normal to complete loss of activity. EL-HDL lipidomic analyses indicated that EL has a defined remodeling of HDL without exhaustion of the substrate and a distinct and preference for several fatty acids that are lipid mediators and known for their potent pro- and anti-inflammatory properties. Structural studies using homology modeling revealed a novel α/β motif in the C-domain, unique to EL. The EL dimer was found to have the flexibility to expand and to bind various sizes of HDL particles. The likely impact of the all known missense mutations (n = 18) on the structure of EL was examined using molecular modeling and the impact they may have on EL lipase activity using a novel structure-function slope based on their structural free energy differences. The results of this multidisciplinary approach delineated the impact of EL and its variants on HDL. Moreover, the results suggested EL to have the capacity to modulate vascular health through its role in fatty acid-based signaling pathways.

Early Increase in Alveolar Macrophage Prostaglandin 15d-PGJ2 Precedes Neutrophil Recruitment into Lungs of Cytokine-insufflated Rats

Inflammation. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23616184

Early detection and prevention is an important goal in acute respiratory distress syndrome research. We determined the concentration of the anti-inflammatory 15-deoxy-Δ(12,14)-prostaglandin-J2 (15d-PGJ2) and other components of the cyclopentenone prostaglandin cascade in relation to lung inflammation in cytokine (IL-1/LPS)-insufflated rats. We found that 15d-PGJ2 levels increase in the bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid of rats insufflated with cytokines 2 h before. BAL 15d-PGJ2 increases preceded neutrophil recruitment, lung injury, and oxidative stress in the lungs of cytokine-insufflated rats. 15d-PGJ2 was localized in alveolar macrophages that decreased following cytokine insufflation. 15d-PGJ2 may constitute an early biomarker of lung inflammation and may reflect an endogenous attempt to regulate ongoing inflammation in macrophages and elsewhere after cytokine insufflation.

Multidrug Resistance-associated Protein 2 (MRP2/ABCC2) Haplotypes Significantly Affect the Pharmacokinetics of Tacrolimus in Kidney Transplant Recipients

Clinical Pharmacokinetics. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23633119

Tacrolimus is an immunosuppressive drug used for the prevention of the allograft rejection in kidney transplant recipients. It exhibits a narrow therapeutic index and large pharmacokinetic variability. Tacrolimus is mainly metabolized by cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A4 and 3A5 and effluxed via ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters such as P-glycoprotein (P-gp), encoded by ABCB1 gene. The influence of CYP3A5*3 on the pharmacokinetics of tacrolimus has been well characterized. On the other hand, the contribution of polymorphisms in other genes is controversial. In addition, the involvement of other efflux transporters than P-gp in tacrolimus disposition is uncertain. The present study was designed to investigate the effects of genetic polymorphisms of CYP3As and efflux transporters on the pharmacokinetics of tacrolimus.

Comparison of the Quantification of Acetaminophen in Plasma, Cerebrospinal Fluid and Dried Blood Spots Using High-performance Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry

Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis. Sep, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23670126

Acetaminophen (paracetamol, N-(4-hydroxyphenyl) acetamide) is one of the most commonly prescribed drugs for the management of pain in children. Quantification of acetaminophen in pre-term and term neonates and small children requires the availability of highly sensitive assays in small volume blood samples. We developed and validated an LC-MS/MS assay for the quantification of acetaminophen in human plasma, cerebro-spinal fluid (CSF) and dried blood spots (DBS). Reconstitution in water (DBS only) and addition of a protein precipitation solution containing the deuterated internal standard were the only manual steps. Extracted samples were analyzed on a Kinetex 2.6 μm PFP column using an acetonitrile/formic acid gradient. The analytes were detected in the positive multiple reaction mode. Alternatively, DBS were automatically processed using direct desorption in a sample card and preparation (SCAP) robotic autosampler in combination with online extraction. The range of reliable response in plasma and CSF was 3.05-20,000 ng/ml (r(2)>0.99) and 27.4-20,000 ng/ml (r(2)>0.99) for DBS (manual extraction and automated direct desorption). Inter-day accuracy was always within 85-115% and inter-day precision for plasma, CSF and manually extracted DBS were less than 15%. Deming regression analysis comparing 167 matching pairs of plasma and DBS samples showed a correlation coefficient of 0.98. Bland Altman analysis indicated a 26.6% positive bias in DBS, most likely reflecting the blood: plasma distribution ratio of acetaminophen. DBS are a valid matrix for acetaminophen pharmacokinetic studies.

Emerging Technologies: Polymer-free Phospholipid Encapsulated Sirolimus Nanocarriers for the Controlled Release of Drug from a Stent-plus-balloon or a Stand-alone Balloon Catheter

EuroIntervention : Journal of EuroPCR in Collaboration with the Working Group on Interventional Cardiology of the European Society of Cardiology. May, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23685303

Drug-eluting stents have proven to be effective in reducing the risk of late restenosis. In order to achieve a controlled and prolonged release of the antiproliferative agent, current drug-eluting stents utilise various biodegradable as well as non-erodible polymeric blends to coat the stent surface and to serve as drug carriers. The utilisation of polymeric compounds in current drug-eluting stents may eventually limit their performance as well as their clinical applicability due to the potential induction of undesirable local reactions. The development of alternative, polymer-free drug carriers has the potential to overcome some of the limitations of current drug-eluting stent formulations. Moreover, improvements in drug carriers may also result in an expansion of the technological possibilities for other intravascular drug delivery systems, such as metal-free or even implant-free solutions. This article describes the structure and the preclinical validation profile of a novel phospholipid encapsulated sirolimus nanocarrier, used as a coating in two formulations: a coronary stent-plus-balloon system and a stand-alone balloon catheter. The nanoparticles provided a stable, even and homogenous coating to the devices in both formulations. Dose-finding studies allowed the most appropriate identification of the best nanoparticle structure associated with an extremely efficient transfer of drug to all layers of the vessel wall, achieving high tissue concentrations that persisted days after the application, with low systemic drug leaks.

Effects of Lovastatin Treatment on the Metabolic Distributions in the Han:SPRD Rat Model of Polycystic Kidney Disease

BMC Nephrology. 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 23902712

We previously demonstrated that lovastatin decreases cyst volume and improves kidney function in the Han:SPRD (Cy/+) rat model of ADPKD. Since endothelial dysfunction and inflammatory activity are evident in patients with ADPKD, we investigated whether lovastatin reduces the inflammation and vascular dysfunction and improves kidney cell energy metabolism of Cy/+ rats.

Quantification of the 5-lipoxygenase Inhibitor Zileuton in Human Plasma Using High Performance Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry

Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Oct, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24029553

Zileuton is an orally active, selective inhibitor of 5-lipoxygenase, which catalyzes the first step in the conversion of arachadonic acid into leukotrienes. Given the important role of leukotrienes in inflammation and cell signaling, multiple studies have investigated the efficacy of zileuton in the treatment of human disease. Examples of disease targets include asthma, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and more recently, acne, ischemic/reperfusion injury, inflammatory pain, and sickle cell anemia. Zileuton is currently approved for the prophylaxis and chronic treatment of asthma. We report the development and validation of a sensitive and specific liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) assay for the quantification of zileuton in human EDTA plasma. The range of reliable response was 3.05-20,000ng/mL in human plasma. The calibration curves had a correlation coefficient of r(2)>0.99. The intra-day precision was 3.4-5.3%. The inter-day precision ranged from 4.5% to 7.3% and inter-day accuracy from 100% to 107%. No matrix interferences, ion suppression/enhancement, or carry-over was observed. The assay met all predefined acceptance criteria and was subsequently employed to measure plasma zileuton concentrations in a clinical trial.

Changes in Clearance, Volume and Bioavailability of Immunosuppressants when Given with HAART in HIV-1 Infected Liver and Kidney Transplant Recipients

Biopharmaceutics & Drug Disposition. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24030928

Solid organ transplantation in human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV)-infected individuals requiring the concomitant use of immunosuppressants (IS) [e.g. cyclosporine (CsA) or tacrolimus (TAC)] and antiretrovirals (ARVs) [e.g. protease inhibitors (PIs) and/or non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs)] is complicated by significant drug interactions. This paper describes the pharmacokinetics of CsA and TAC in 52 patients on both IS and NNRTIs, PIs or combined NNRTIs + PIs, in studies conducted at 2 weeks, 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after transplantation. Cyclosporine and TAC blood concentrations were measured by LC/MS/MS. This multisubject, varied ARV-IS drug combination, longitudinal observational patient study provided a unique opportunity to examine the effect of different ARV drugs on IS pharmacokinetics (PK) by comparing the ratios of parameters over time and between PK parameters. Subjects taking concomitant PIs exhibited increases in CsA and TAC exposure (AUC/dose) due to the increased apparent oral bioavailability and decreased apparent oral clearance. Those subjects taking CsA and concomitant efavirenz (EFV) showed time dependent increases in exposure due to ~30% increases in the apparent oral bioavailability over time as well as a decreased apparent oral clearance, while subjects on TAC and EFV showed time-dependent changes in all PK parameters. The increased bioavailability was not observed in patients on CsA and nevirapine (NVP). These differences between IS drugs and the changes in PK parameters are not easily predicted, illustrating the importance of continued therapeutic drug monitoring in patients on these complex medication regimens. Published 2013. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

Cyclosporine Induces Endothelial Cell Release of Complement-activating Microparticles

Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN. Nov, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24092930

Defective control of the alternative pathway of complement is an important risk factor for several renal diseases, including atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome. Infections, drugs, pregnancy, and hemodynamic insults can trigger episodes of atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome in susceptible patients. Although the mechanisms linking these clinical events with disease flares are unknown, recent work has revealed that each of these clinical conditions causes cells to release microparticles. We hypothesized that microparticles released from injured endothelial cells promote intrarenal complement activation. Calcineurin inhibitors cause vascular and renal injury and can trigger hemolytic uremic syndrome. Here, we show that endothelial cells exposed to cyclosporine in vitro and in vivo release microparticles that activate the alternative pathway of complement. Cyclosporine-induced microparticles caused injury to bystander endothelial cells and are associated with complement-mediated injury of the kidneys and vasculature in cyclosporine-treated mice. Cyclosporine-induced microparticles did not bind factor H, an alternative pathway regulatory protein present in plasma, explaining their complement-activating phenotype. Finally, we found that in renal transplant patients, the number of endothelial microparticles in plasma increases 2 weeks after starting tacrolimus, and treatment with tacrolimus associated with increased C3 deposition on endothelial microparticles in the plasma of some patients. These results suggest that injury-associated release of endothelial microparticles is an important mechanism by which systemic insults trigger intravascular complement activation and complement-dependent renal diseases.

Bioactive Lipid Mediators in Polycystic Kidney Disease

Journal of Lipid Research. Dec, 2013  |  Pubmed ID: 24343898

Inflammatory activity is evident in patients with chronic kidney disease with limited data available in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). We hypothesized that inflammation is an upstream event in the pathogenesis of ADPKD and may be a contributing factor in the disease severity and progression. Serum samples from 61 HALT study A group patients were compared with samples from 49 patients from HALT study B group with moderately advanced disease. Targeted MS analysis of bioactive lipid mediators as markers of inflammation was performed and correlated with eGFR and total kidney volume (TKV) normalized to the body surface area (BSAR) to assess if these markers are predictive of ADPKD severity. ADPKD patients with eGFR >60 ml/min/1.73 m(2) showed higher levels of 5- and 12/15-lipoxygenase (LOX) and cyclooxygenase, and generated higher levels of hydroxy-octadecadienoic acids 9-HODE and 13-HODE and HETEs 8-HETE, 11-HETE, 12-HETE, and 15-HETE as compared with healthy subjects. Linear regression of 9-HODE and 13-HODE revealed a significant relationship with eGFR and TKV, while 15-HETE significantly correlated with TKV/BSAR. Production of 20-HETE, a P450-produced metabolite of arachidonic acid, was higher in ADPKD patients as compared with healthy subjects and significantly correlated with eGFR and TKV/BSAR. Perturbation in fatty acid metabolism is evident early in ADPKD patients, even in those with preserved kidney function. The identified LOX pathways may be potential therapeutic targets for slowing down ADPKD progression.

CD73-dependent Generation of Adenosine and Endothelial Adora2b Signaling Attenuate Diabetic Nephropathy

Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN. Mar, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24262796

Nucleotide phosphohydrolysis by the ecto-5'-nucleotidase (CD73) is the main source for extracellular generation of adenosine. Extracellular adenosine subsequently signals through four distinct adenosine A receptors (Adora1, Adora2a, Adora2b, or Adora3). Here, we hypothesized a functional role for CD73-dependent generation and concomitant signaling of extracellular adenosine during diabetic nephropathy. CD73 transcript and protein levels were elevated in the kidneys of diabetic mice. Genetic deletion of CD73 was associated with more severe diabetic nephropathy, whereas treatment with soluble nucleotidase was therapeutic. Transcript levels of renal adenosine receptors showed a selective induction of Adora2b during diabetic nephropathy. In a transgenic reporter mouse, Adora2b expression localized to the vasculature and increased after treatment with streptozotocin. Adora2b(-/-) mice experienced more severe diabetic nephropathy, and studies in mice with tissue-specific deletion of Adora2b in tubular epithelia or vascular endothelia implicated endothelial Adora2b signaling in protection from diabetic nephropathy. Finally, treatment with a selective Adora2b agonist (BAY 60-6583) conveyed potent protection from diabetes-associated kidney disease. Taken together, these findings implicate CD73-dependent production of extracellular adenosine and endothelial Adora2b signaling in kidney protection during diabetic nephropathy.

Mycophenolate Mofetil Enhances the Negative Effects of Sirolimus and Tacrolimus on Rat Kidney Cell Metabolism

PloS One. 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24497939

Mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) per se is not known to have negative effects on the kidney. MMF alone or in combination with sirolimus, can be the basis of calcineurin inhibitor (CNI)-free, kidney sparing drug protocols. However, long-term outcomes in patients on MMF/SRL seem to be inferior to those treated with regimens that include the CNI tacrolimus (TAC) due to an increased risk of allo-immune reactions. Interestingly, potential enhancement of the negative effects of SRL and TAC on the kidney by MMF has never been considered.

Early Effect of Tidal Volume on Lung Injury Biomarkers in Surgical Patients with Healthy Lungs

Anesthesiology. Sep, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24809976

The early biological impact of short-term mechanical ventilation on healthy lungs is unknown. The authors aimed to characterize the immediate tidal volume (VT)-related changes on lung injury biomarkers in patients with healthy lungs and low risk of pulmonary complications.

Focus on MTOR Inhibitors and Tacrolimus in Renal Transplantation: Pharmacokinetics, Exposure-response Relationships, and Clinical Outcomes

Transplant Immunology. Jun, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24861504

Mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)-inhibitor-containing immunosuppressive regimens have been developed as part of calcineurin inhibitor (CNI) minimization/withdrawal strategies for renal transplant recipients, with the goal of avoiding CNI-associated nephrotoxicity. This review focuses on the pharmacokinetic interactions and exposure-response relationships of mTOR inhibitors and tacrolimus (TAC), the most widely used CNI. We also discuss key randomized clinical studies that have evaluated use of this combination in renal transplantation. Pharmacokinetic studies have shown that mTOR inhibitors, everolimus (EVR) and sirolimus (SRL), have a large intra- and inter-patient variability in drug exposure, and narrow therapeutic windows (trough levels [C0] 3-8 ng/mL and 5-15 ng/mL, respectively). Consequently, routine therapeutic drug monitoring of EVR and SRL is recommended to optimize efficacy and minimize toxicity in individual patients. As there is a good correlation between C0 and area under the curve (AUC), C0 can be used as a convenient and reliable measure of mTOR drug exposure. Clinical data on the use of EVR or SRL in TAC minimization strategies in renal transplantation are limited. Available evidence suggests that treatment with EVR allows early and substantial TAC minimization when used with basiliximab induction and corticosteroids, to achieve good renal function without compromising efficacy or safety. However, data comparing this combination with other regimens are lacking. Results with SRL are more mixed. SRL in combination with reduced TAC has been shown to provide less nephrotoxicity than the SRL/standard TAC combination, with comparable efficacy and safety. However, this approach has been shown to be inferior to other regimens in terms of patient/graft survival and biopsy-proven acute rejection (vs MMF/TAC) as well as renal function (vs MMF/TAC and SRL/MMF). Further studies are needed to define the therapeutic window for TAC when used in combination with mTOR inhibitors, evaluate EVR/reduced TAC versus other regimens, assess long-term outcomes, and determine efficacy and safety in high-risk patients.

Inhibition of Calcineurin Combined with Dasatinib Has Direct and Indirect Anti-leukemia Effects Against BCR-ABL1(+) Leukemia

American Journal of Hematology. Sep, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 24891015

Treatment of BCR-ABL1(+) leukemia has been revolutionized with the development of tyrosine kinase inhibitors. However, patients with BCR-ABL1(+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia and subsets of patients with chronic myeloid leukemia are at high risk of relapse despite kinase inhibition therapy, necessitating novel treatment strategies. We previously reported synthetic lethality in BCR-ABL1(+) leukemia cells by blocking both calcineurin/NFAT signaling and BCR-ABL1, independent of drug efflux inhibition by cyclosporine. Here, using RNA-interference we confirm that calcineurin inhibition sensitizes BCR-ABL1(+) cells to tyrosine kinase inhibition in vitro. However, when we performed pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies of dasatinib and cyclosporine in mice, we found that co-administration of cyclosporine increases peak concentrations and the area under the curve of dasatinib, which contributes to the enhanced disease control. We also report the clinical experience of two subjects in whom we observed more hematopoietic toxicity than expected while enrolled in a Phase Ib trial designed to assess the safety and tolerability of adding cyclosporine to dasatinib in humans. Thus, the anti-leukemia benefit of co-administration of cyclosporine and dasatinib is mechanistically pleiotropic, but may not be tolerable, at least as administered in this trial. These data highlight some of the challenges associated with combining targeted agents to treat leukemia.

Fatty Acid Desaturation Index in Human Plasma: Comparison of Different Analytical Methodologies for the Evaluation of Diet Effects

Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. Oct, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 25116600

Stearoyl-CoA desaturase 1 (SCD1) plays a role in the development of obesity and related conditions, such as insulin resistance, and potentially also in neurological and heart diseases. The activity of SCD1 can be monitored using the desaturation index (DI), the ratio of product (16:1n-7 and 18:1n-9) to precursor (16:0 and 18:0) fatty acids. Here, different analytical strategies were applied to identify the method which best supports SCD1 biology. A novel effective approach was the use of the SCD1-independent fatty acid (16:1n-10) as a negative control. The first approach was based on a simple extraction followed by neutral loss triglyceride fatty acid analysis. The second approach was based on the saponification of triglycerides followed by fatty acid analysis (specific for the position of the double bond within monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs)). In addition to the analytical LC-MS assays, different matrices (plasma total triglyceride fraction and the very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) fraction) were investigated to identify the best for studying changes in SCD1 activity. Samples from volunteers on a high-carbohydrate diet were analyzed. Both ultra HPLC (UHPLC)-MS-based assays showed acceptable accuracies (75-125% of nominal) and precisions (<20%) for the analysis of DI-specific fatty acids in VLDL and plasma. The most specific assay for the analysis of the liver SCD activity was then validated for specificity and selectivity, intra- and interday accuracy and precision, matrix effects, dilution effects, and analyte stability. After 3 days of high-carbohydrate diet, only the specific fatty acids in human plasma VLDL showed a significant increase in DI and associated SCD1 activity.

Endothelial Dysfunction and Oxidative Stress in Polycystic Kidney Disease

American Journal of Physiology. Renal Physiology. Dec, 2014  |  Pubmed ID: 25234311

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of premature mortality in ADPKD patients. The aim was to identify potential serum biomarkers associated with the severity of ADPKD. Serum samples from a homogenous group of 61 HALT study A ADPKD patients [early disease group with estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) >60 ml·min(-1)·1.73 m(-2)] were compared with samples from 49 patients from the HALT study B group with moderately advanced disease (eGFR 25-60 ml·min(-1)·1.73 m(-2)). Targeted tandem-mass spectrometry analysis of markers of endothelial dysfunction and oxidative stress was performed and correlated with eGFR and total kidney volume normalized to the body surface area (TKV/BSA). ADPKD patients with eGFR >60 ml·min(-1)·1.73 m(-2) showed higher levels of CVD risk markers asymmetric and symmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA and SDMA), homocysteine, and S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH) compared with the healthy controls. Upon adjustments for age, sex, systolic blood pressure, and creatinine, SDMA, homocysteine, and SAH remained negatively correlated with eGFR. Resulting cellular methylation power [S-adenosylmethionine (SAM)/SAH ratio] correlated with the reduction of renal function and increase in TKV. Concentrations of prostaglandins (PGs), including oxidative stress marker 8-isoprostane, as well as PGF2α, PGD₂, and PGE₂, were markedly elevated in patients with ADPKD compared with healthy controls. Upon adjustments for age, sex, systolic blood pressure, and creatinine, increased PGD₂ and PGF₂α were associated with reduced eGFR, whereas 8-isoprostane and again PGF₂α were associated with an increase in TKV/BSA. Endothelial dysfunction and oxidative stress are evident early in ADPKD patients, even in those with preserved kidney function. The identified pathways may provide potential therapeutic targets for slowing down the disease progression.

Age-dependent Changes in Sirolimus Metabolite Formation in Patients with Neurofibromatosis Type 1

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Jun, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 25162215

Sirolimus is an inhibitor of mammalian target of rapamycin, which exhibits large interindividual pharmacokinetic variability. We report sirolimus pharmacokinetic data collected as part of a concentration-controlled multicenter phase II clinical trial in pediatric patients with neurofibromatosis type 1. The purpose of this study was to explore the effect of growth on age-dependent changes in sirolimus clearance with a focus on cytochrome P450 3A (CYP3A) subfamily mediated metabolism.

Neurobehavioral Consequences of Small Molecule-drug Immunosuppression

Neuropharmacology. Sep, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 25529273

60 years after the first successful kidney transplantation in humans, transplant patients have decent survival rates owing to a broad spectrum of immunosuppressive medication available today. Not only transplant patients, but also patients with inflammatory autoimmune diseases or cancer benefit from these life-saving immunosuppressive and anti-proliferative medications. However, this success is gained with the disadvantage of neuropsychological disturbances and mental health problems such as depression, anxiety and impaired quality of life after long-term treatment with immunosuppressive drugs. So far, surprisingly little is known about unwanted neuropsychological side effects of immunosuppressants and anti-proliferative drugs from the group of so called small molecule-drugs. This is partly due to the fact that it is difficult to disentangle whether and to what extent the observed neuropsychiatric disturbances are a direct result of the patient's medical history or of the immunosuppressive treatment. Thus, here we summarize experimental as well as clinical data of mammalian and human studies, with the focus on selected small-molecule drugs that are frequently employed in solid organ transplantation, autoimmune disorders or cancer therapy and their effects on neuropsychological functions, mood, and behavior. These data reveal the necessity to develop immunosuppressive and anti-proliferative drugs inducing fewer or no unwanted neuropsychological side effects, thereby increasing the quality of life in patients requiring long term immunosuppressive treatment. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Neuroimmunology and Synaptic Function'.

A High-performance Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry-based Targeted Metabolomics Kidney Dysfunction Marker Panel in Human Urine

Clinica Chimica Acta; International Journal of Clinical Chemistry. Jun, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 25871999

Previous studies have examined and documented fluctuations in urine metabolites in response to disease processes and drug toxicity affecting glomerular filtration, tubule cell metabolism, reabsorption, oxidative stress, purine degradation, active secretion and kidney amino acylase activity representative of diminished renal function. However, a high-throughput assay that incorporates metabolites that are surrogate markers for such changes into a kidney dysfunction panel has yet to be described.

Everolimus and Sirolimus in Transplantation-related but Different

Expert Opinion on Drug Safety. Jul, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 25912929

The inhibitors of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) sirolimus and everolimus are used not only as immunosuppressants after organ transplantation in combination with calcineurin inhibitors (CNIs) but also as proliferation signal inhibitors coated on drug-eluting stents and in cancer therapy. Notwithstanding their related chemical structures, both have distinct pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic and toxicodynamic properties.

Long-term Cross-validation of Everolimus Therapeutic Drug Monitoring Assays: the Zortracker Study

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Jun, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 25970506

This ongoing academic collaboration was initiated for providing support to set up, validate, and maintain everolimus therapeutic drug monitoring assays and to study long-term interlaboratory performance.

Pravastatin Therapy and Biomarker Changes in Children and Young Adults with Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease

Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : CJASN. Sep, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 26224879

Disease-specific treatment options for autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease are limited. Clinical intervention early in life is likely to have the greatest effect. In a 3-year randomized double-blind placebo-controlled phase 3 clinical trial, the authors recently showed that pravastatin decreased height-corrected total kidney volume (HtTKV) progression of structural kidney disease over a 3-year period. However, the underlying mechanisms have not been elucidated.

Memory-updating Abrogates Extinction of Learned Immunosuppression

Brain, Behavior, and Immunity. Sep, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 26386321

When memories are recalled, they enter a transient labile phase in which they can be impaired or enhanced followed by a new stabilization process termed reconsolidation. It is unknown, however, whether reconsolidation is restricted to neurocognitive processes such as fear memories or can be extended to peripheral physiological functions as well. Here, we show in a paradigm of behaviorally conditioned taste aversion in rats memory-updating in learned immunosuppression. The administration of sub-therapeutic doses of the immunosuppressant cyclosporin A together with the conditioned stimulus (CS/saccharin) during retrieval blocked extinction of conditioned taste aversion and learned suppression of T cell cytokine (interleukin-2; interferon-γ) production. This conditioned immunosuppression is of clinical relevance since it significantly prolonged the survival time of heterotopically transplanted heart allografts in rats. Collectively, these findings demonstrate that memories can be updated on both neural and behavioral levels as well as on the level of peripheral physiological systems such as immune functioning.


Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. Jul, 2015  |  Pubmed ID: 26418704

In response to the urgent need for new, reliable biomarkers to complement the guidance of the immunosuppressive therapy a huge number of biomarker candidates to be implemented in clinical practice have been introduced to the transplant community. This includes a diverse range of molecules with very different molecular weights, chemical and physical properties, ex vivo stabilities, in vivo kinetic behaviors and levels of similarity to other molecules, etc. In addition a large body of different analytical techniques and assay protocols can be used to measure biomarkers. Sometimes a complex software-based data evaluation is a prerequisite for appropriate interpretation of the results and for their reporting. Although some analytical procedures are of great value for research purposes, they may be too complex for implementation in a clinical setting. Whereas the proof of "fitness for purpose" is appropriate for validation of biomarker assays used in exploratory drug development studies, a higher level of analytical validation must be achieved and eventually advanced analytical performance might be necessary before diagnostic application in transplantation medicine. A high level of consistency of results between-laboratories as well as between-methods (if applicable) should be obtained and maintained to make biomarkers effective instruments in support of therapeutic decisions.This overview focuses on pre-analytical and analytical aspects to be considered for the implementation of new biomarkers for adjusting immunosuppression in a clinical setting and highlights critical points to be addressed on the way to make them suitable as diagnostic tools. These include but are not limited to appropriate method validation, standardization, education, automation and commercialization.

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