The bioavailability, fraction of dose that reaches systemic circulation, of orally administered drugs is often limited by both physical barriers of the intestine (e.g., unstirred-water and mucosal layers, epithelial tight junctions) as well as biochemical barriers such as cytochromes P450 (CYP) and P-glycoprotein (P-gp). Highly expressed in intestine and liver, CYP and P-gp can limit the systemicavailability of parent-drug by metabolism and efflux, respectively, by means of similarly large and flexible active sites that accommodate a variety of structurally-diverse, lipophilic molecules over a wide-range of molecular weights. Consequently, many molecules that are substrates for CYP3A4 also demonstrate affinity for P-gp and numerous studies have reported that for these dual-substrates, CYP3A4 and P-gp afford an interplay that affects bioavailability and clearance in a manner that is non-linear. Several in vitro and in situ models of metabolism and permeability, including transfected cell lines, isolated tissues and perfused organs as well as computational models including physiologically-based pharmacokinetic models of such co-expressing systems have demonstrated this phenomenon of CYP3A/Pgp interplay. Furthermore, recent availability of ligand bound X-ray co-crystal structures of the CYP3A4 and P-gp binding sites coupled with computational docking techniques and other validated in silico models, provide medicinal chemists with tools to inform structuraldesign modifications that can modify the interaction with one or both proteins. This article provides a review of relevant in silico, in vitro, ex vivo and in situ models that allow for investigation of the extent to which clearance or bioavailability can be affected by CYP/P-gp interplay.
Keywords: Cytochrome P450, in silico modeling, in vitro models, in situ models, metabolic enzymes, P-glycoprotein, transporters, transporter- enzyme interplay, affinity, substrates
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