As part of the overall product development and manufacturing strategy, pharmaceutical companies routinely change formulation and manufacturing site. Depending on the type and level of change and the BCS class of the molecule, dissolution data and/or bioequivalence (BE) may be needed to support the change for immediate release dosage forms. In this report, we demonstrate that for certain weakly basic low-solubility molecules which rapidly dissolve in the stomach, absorption modeling could be used to justify a BE study waiver even when there is failure to show dissolution similarity under some conditions. The development of an absorption model for etoricoxib is described here, which was then used to a priori predict the BE outcome of tablet batches manufactured at two sites. Dissolution studies in 0.01 N HCl media (pH 2.0) had demonstrated similarity of etoricoxib tablets manufactured at two different sites. However, dissolution testing at pH 4.5 and pH 6.8 media failed to show comparability of the tablets manufactured at the two sites. Single simulations and virtual trials conducted using the 0.01 N HCl dissolution showed similarity in AUC and C max for all tablet strengths for batches manufactured at the two manufacturing sites. These predicted results were verified in a definitive bioequivalence study, which showed that both tablet batches were bioequivalent. Since the development of traditional in vitro-in vivo correlations (IVIVC) for immediate release (IR) products is challenging, in cases such as etoricoxib, absorption modeling could be used as an alternative to support waiver of a BE study.
Co-infection of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) by Wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV, a Tritimovirus) and Triticum mosaic virus (TriMV, a Poacevirus) of the family Potyviridae causes synergistic interaction. In this study, the effects of the synergistic interaction between WSMV and TriMV on endogenous and virus-derived small interfering RNAs (vsiRNAs) were examined in susceptible ('Arapahoe') and temperature-sensitive resistant ('Mace') wheat cultivars at 18°C and 27°C. Single and double infections in wheat caused a shift in the profile of endogenous small RNAs from 24 nt being the most predominant in healthy plants to 21 nt in infected wheat. Massive amounts of 21 and 22 nt vsiRNAs accumulated in singly and doubly infected Arapahoe at both temperatures and in Mace at 27°C but not 18°C. The plus- and minus-sense vsiRNAs were distributed throughout the genomic RNAs in Arapahoe at both temperature regimens and in Mace at 27°C, although some regions served as hot-spots, spawning an excessive number of vsiRNAs. The vsiRNA peaks were conserved among cultivars, suggesting that the Dicer-like enzymes in susceptible and resistant cultivars similarly accessed the genomic RNAs of WSMV or TriMV. Accumulation of large amounts of vsiRNAs in doubly infected plants suggests that the silencing suppressor proteins encoded by TriMV and WSMV do not prevent the formation of vsiRNAs; thus, the synergistic effect observed is independent from RNA-silencing mediated vsiRNA biogenesis. The high-resolution map of endogenous and vsiRNAs from WSMV- and/or TriMV-infected wheat cultivars may form a foundation for understanding the virus-host interactions, the effect of synergistic interactions on host defense, and virus resistance mechanisms in wheat.
To meet the increasing global demand for soybeans for food and feed consumption, new high-yield varieties with improved quality traits are needed. To ensure the safety of the crop, it is important to determine the variation in seed proteins along with unintended changes that may occur in the crop as a result various stress stimuli, breeding, and genetic modification. Understanding the variation of seed proteins in the wild and cultivated soybean cultivars is useful for determining unintended protein expression in new varieties of soybeans. Proteomic technology is useful to analyze protein variation due to various stimuli. This short review discusses transgenic soybeans, different soybean proteins, and the approaches used for protein analysis. The characterization of soybean protein will be useful for researchers, nutrition professionals, and regulatory agencies dealing with soy-derived food products.
Lactoferrin (LF) is a ubiquitous cationic iron-binding milk glycoprotein that contributes to nutrition and exerts a broad-spectrum primary defense against bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and viruses in mammals. These qualities make lactoferrin protein and its antimicrobial motifs highly desirable candidates to be incorporated in plants to impart broad-based resistance against plant pathogens or to economically produce them in bulk quantities for pharmaceutical and nutritional purposes. This study introduced bovine LF (BLF) gene into tobacco ( Nicotiana tabacum var. Xanthi), Arabidopsis ( A. thaliana ) and wheat ( Triticum aestivum ) via Agrobacterium -mediated plant transformation. Transgenic plants or detached leaves exhibited high levels of resistance against the damping-off causing fungal pathogen Rhizoctonia solani and the head blight causing fungal pathogen Fusarium graminearum . LF also imparted resistance to tomato plants against a bacterial pathogen, Ralstonia solanacearum . Similarly, other researchers demonstrated expression of LF and LF-mediated high-quality resistance to several other aggressive fungal and bacterial plant pathogens in transgenic plants and against viral pathogens by foliar applications of LF or its derivatives. Taken together, these studies demonstrated the effectiveness of LF for improving crop quality and its biopharming potentials for pharmaceautical and nutritional applications.
Published reports have clearly shown that weakly basic drugs which have low solubility at high pH could have impaired absorption in patients with high gastric pH thus leading to reduced and variable bioavailability. Since such reduction in exposure can lead to significant loss of efficacy, it is imperative to (1) understand the behavior of the compound as a function of stomach pH to inform of any risk of bioavailability loss in clinical studies and (2) develop a robust formulation which can provide adequate exposure in achlorhydric patients. In this review paper, we provide an overview of the factors that can cause high gastric pH in human, discuss clinical and preclinical pharmacokinetic data for weak bases under conditions of normal and high gastric pH, and give examples of formulation strategies to minimize or mitigate the reduced absorption of weakly basic drugs under high gastric pH conditions. It should be noted that the ability to overcome pH sensitivity issues is highly compound dependent and there are no obvious and general solutions to overcome such effect. Further, we discuss, along with several examples, the use of biopharmaceutical tools such as in vitro dissolution, absorption modeling, and gastric pH modified animal models to assess absorption risk of weak bases in high gastric pH and also the use of these tools to enable development of formulations to mitigate such effects.
The impact of a carmellose sodium (sodium carboxymethycellulose)-based coat (Opaglos 2) on the stability of an oxygen-sensitive compound A and in-vitro dissolution and bioperformance of compound B has been investigated.
Impaired absorption of weakly basic drugs in patients with reduced gastric acidity can lead to loss of efficacy of the therapeutic agent. Hence, a robust formulation which can provide adequate exposure in achlorhydric patients is imperative to achieve the desired efficacy. In this report, formulation development of a weakly basic Merck compound A is described. Compound A shows lower solubility at higher pH and thus is prone to reduced exposure under conditions of achlorhydria, as the compounds solubility increases only in environments of less than pH 2. Several formulations with or without an acidifier were developed and characterized by in vitro dissolution and in gastric pH modified dog model to assess their bioperformance in high gastric pH conditions. To predict the bioperformance of these formulations in humans, a dissolution based absorption model was developed and validated against the observed PPI-interaction data in the clinic and the gastric pH-adjusted dog data. An additional absorption model was developed to allow for incorporation of the dog PK data to provide translation of preclinical to clinical exposure. Based on the in vitro dissolution, in silico absorption modeling and preclinical in vivo data, a citric acid-based formulation (F2) was selected for a human pharmacokinetic study. This study showed that exposures from F2 were not meaningfully different in the presence of proton pump inhibitor (PPI) as compared to non-PPI, thus confirming that the F2 formulation was successful in overcoming the achlorhydria effect. These efforts also highlighted that the complementary use of in vitro/in silico/in vivo (IVISIV) tools may be a helpful strategy in the development of formulations to overcome the achlorhydria effect and achieve adequate exposure in patients with high gastric pH.
Psoriasis is one of the most common human skin diseases. Topical therapy forms the cornerstone in the management of mild-to-moderate psoriasis. Topical therapies are also used as adjunctive to systemic therapy in moderate and severe forms of the disease.
In Vitro-In Vivo Correlation (IVIVC) is being increasingly used to predict bioperformance of dosage forms without conducting animal and/or human studies which are not only time-consuming and expensive but also might be considered ethically undesirable. The main aim of IVIVC methods is to develop in vitro drug release methods which are simple, robust, reproducible, inexpensive, in compliance with compendial and regulatory requirements and finally can be used in lieu of in vivo studies to direct formulation selection. This review provides a summary of currently marketed polymeric depot products and the patents related to these drug delivery systems in addition to currently available in vitro release methods used to study drug release from injectable controlled release drug delivery systems, currently available IVIVC methods and some examples of successful IVIVC for small molecules, peptides and proteins formulated in controlled release formulations administered subcutaneously or intramuscularly.
Genetic engineering plays a unique role in fundamental plant biology studies and in improving crop traits. These efforts often necessitate introduction and expression of multiple genes using promoters from a very limited repertoire. Current common practice of expressing multiple genes is the repeated use of the same or similar promoters. This practice causes more frequent transgene silencing due to a high degree of sequence homology and a greater chance of rearrangement among repeatedly used promoter sequences. Therefore, availability and use of natural bidirectional promoters to minimize gene silencing and achieve desirable expression pattern of transgenes is a critical issue in the field of plant genetic engineering. Here we describe the use of a single natural bidirectional promoter to drive the expression of two reporter genes in onion epidermal cells and in transgenic tobacco plants. We show that (1) the promoter drives the simultaneous expression of GUS and GFP reporter genes after transient expression and stable transformation, (2) the transcription is equally strong in both directions, (3) immediate upstream regions in each direction control transcription independently from each other, and (4) the reporter genes are expressed in leaves and stems but not in roots, as expected from the fact that the endogenous promoter controls the expression of two photosynthetic genes in Arabidopsis. Hence, use of bidirectional promoters in heterologous background provides a means to express multiple genes in transgenic plants and aids genetic engineering-based crop improvement.
Rhizoctonia solani is a ubiquitous basidiomycetous soilborne fungal pathogen causing damping-off of seedlings, aerial blights and postharvest diseases. To gain insight into the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis a global approach based on analysis of expressed sequence tags (ESTs) was undertaken. To get broad gene-expression coverage, two normalized EST libraries were developed from mycelia grown under high nitrogen-induced virulent and low nitrogen/methylglucose-induced hypovirulent conditions. A pilot-scale assessment of gene diversity was made from the sequence analyses of the two libraries. A total of 2280 cDNA clones was sequenced that corresponded to 220 unique sequence sets or clusters (contigs) and 805 singlets, making up a total of 1025 unique genes identified from the two virulence-differentiated cDNA libraries. From the total sequences, 295 genes (38.7%) exhibited strong similarities with genes in public databases and were categorized into 11 functional groups. Approximately 61.3% of the R. solani ESTs have no apparent homologs in publicly available fungal genome databases and are considered unique genes. We have identified several cDNAs with potential roles in fungal pathogenicity, virulence, signal transduction, vegetative incompatibility and mating, drug resistance, lignin degradation, bioremediation and morphological differentiation. A codon-usage table has been formulated based on 14694 R. solani EST codons. Further analysis of ESTs might provide insights into virulence mechanisms of R. solani AG 4 as well as roles of these genes in development, saprophytic colonization and ecological adaptation of this important fungal plant pathogen.
Nanosuspensions, formulations based on the reduction of the active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) particle size in the sub-micron range and most typically around 100-200 nm, represent a valuable option for formulators to facilitate oral absorption of Biopharmaceutics Classification System class II and IV compounds. Their ability to increase the API dissolution rate and subsequent absorption and thus oral bioavailability has been demonstrated in preclinical and clinical settings. This review summarizes the current experience in the biopharmaceutic field with the use of nanosuspensions as oral delivery formulations. The principles behind nanosuspensions as well as the in vitro and in silico evaluation are discussed, while examples are presented highlighting both successes as well as limitations in their application as either toxicology or clinical formulations.
Fixed-dose combination (FDC) products are becoming a popular treatment option because of increased patient compliance and convenience, improved clinical effectiveness, and reduced cost to the patient, among several other reasons. A commonly applied approach for approval of a FDC product is demonstrating bioequivalence between the FDC and co-administration of individual mono-products, provided that there is adequate safety and efficacy data for co-administration of the individual agents. However, achieving bioequivalence between the FDC and individual mono-products can be very challenging, and sometimes not possible since combining multiple active ingredients, especially insoluble molecules, in a single drug product could complicate its biopharmaceutical and pharmacokinetic behavior. In this review, some of the major challenges often encountered while assessing bioequivalence during FDC development will be presented along with discussion of future opportunities to facilitate FDC development and approval.
This summary workshop report highlights presentations and over-arching themes from an October 2011 workshop. Discussions focused on best practices in the application of biopharmaceutics in oral drug product development and evolving bioequivalence approaches. Best practices leverage biopharmaceutic data and other drug, formulation, and patient/disease data to identify drug development challenges in yielding a successfully performing product. Quality by design and product developability paradigms were discussed. Development tools include early development strategies to identify critical absorption factors and oral absorption modeling. An ongoing theme was the desire to comprehensively and systematically assess risk of product failure via the quality target product profile and root cause and risk analysis. However, a parallel need is reduced timelines and fewer resources. Several presentations discussed applying Biopharmaceutics Classification System (BCS) and in vitro-in vivo correlations in development and in post-development and discussed both resource savings and best scientific practices. The workshop also focused on evolving bioequivalence approaches, with emphasis on highly variable products (HVDP), as well as specialized modified-release products. In USA, two bioequivalence approaches for HVDP are the reference-scaled average bioequivalence approach and the two-stage group-sequential design. An adaptive sequential design approach is also acceptable in Canada. In European Union, two approaches for HVDP are a two-stage design and an approach to widen C (max) acceptance limits. For some specialized modified-release products, FDA now requests partial area under the curve. Rationale and limitations of such metrics were discussed (e.g., zolpidem and methylphenidate). A common theme was the benefit of the scientific and regulatory community developing, validating, and harmonizing newer bioequivalence methodologies (e.g., BCS-based waivers and HVDP trial designs).
The development of plant gene transfer systems has allowed for the introgression of alien genes into plant genomes for novel disease control strategies, thus providing a mechanism for broadening the genetic resources available to plant breeders. Using the tools of plant genetic engineering, a broad-spectrum antimicrobial gene was tested for resistance against head blight caused by Fusarium graminearum Schwabe, a devastating disease of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) that reduces both grain yield and quality.
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