Plasma pharmacokinetics and tissue distribution of 17-(allylamino)-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (NSC 330507) in CD2F1 mice1

Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2001 Apr;47(4):291-302. doi: 10.1007/s002800000242.


Purpose: 17-(Allylamino)-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (17AAG) is a benzoquinone ansamycin compound agent that has entered clinical trials. Studies were performed in mice to: (1) define the plasma pharmacokinetics, tissue distribution, and urinary excretion of 17AAG after i.v. delivery; (2) to define the bioavailability of 17AAG after i.p. and oral delivery; and (3) to characterize the concentrations of 17AAG metabolites in plasma and tissue.

Materials and methods: All studies were performed in female CD2F1 mice. Preliminary toxicity studies used 17AAG i.v. bolus doses of 20, 40 and 60 mg/kg. Pharmacokinetic studies used i.v. 17AAG doses of 60, 40, and 26.67 mg/kg and i.p. and oral doses of 40 mg/kg. The plasma concentration versus time data were analyzed by compartmental and noncompartmental methods. The concentrations of 17AAG were also determined in brain, heart, lung, liver, kidney, spleen, skeletal muscle, and fat. Urinary drug excretion was calculated until 24 h after treatment.

Results: A 60 mg/kg dose of 17AAG, in its initial, microdispersed formulation, caused no changes in appearance, appetite, waste elimination, or survival of treated animals as compared to vehicle-treated controls. Bolus i.v. delivery of 60 mg/kg microdispersed 17AAG produced "peak" plasma 17AAG concentrations between 5.8 and 19.3 micrograms/ml in mice killed 5 min after injection. Sequential reduction of the 17AAG dose to 40 and 26.67 mg/kg resulted in "peak" plasma 17AAG concentrations between 8.9 and 19.0 micrograms/ml, and 4.8 and 6.1 micrograms/ml, respectively. Noncompartmental analysis of the plasma 17AAG concentration versus time data showed an increase in AUC from 402 to 625 and 1738 micrograms/ml.min when the 17AAG dose increased from 26.67 to 40 and 60 mg/kg, respectively. Across the range of doses studied, 17AAG total body clearance varied from 34 to 66 ml/min per kg. Compartmental modeling of the plasma 17AAG concentration versus time data showed that the data were fitted best by a two-compartment, open, linear model. In each study, substantial concentrations of a material, subsequently identified as 17-(amino)-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (17AG), were measured in plasma. A subsequent, lyophilized formulation of 17AAG proved excessively toxic when delivered i.v. at 60 mg/kg. A repeat i.v. study using a 40 mg/kg dose of this new formulation produced peak plasma 17AAG concentrations of 20.2-38.4 micrograms/ml, and a 17AAG AUC of 912 micrograms/ml.min, which was approximately 50% greater than the AUC produced by a 40 mg/kg dose of microdispersed 17AAG. The bioavailabilities of 17AAG after i.p. and oral delivery were 99% and 24%, respectively. Minimal amounts of 17AAG and 17AG were detected in the urine. After i.v. bolus delivery to mice, 17AAG distributed rapidly to all tissues, except the brain. Substantial concentrations of 17AG were measured in each tissue.

Conclusions: 17AAG has excellent bioavailability when given i.p. but only modest bioavailability when given orally and is metabolized to 17AG and other metabolites when given i.v., i.p., or orally. 17AAG is widely distributed to tissues. These pharmacokinetic data generated have proven relevant to the design of recently initiated clinical trials of 17AAG and could be useful in their interpretation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / blood
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / pharmacokinetics*
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / toxicity
  • Area Under Curve
  • Benzoquinones
  • Biological Availability
  • Blood Proteins / metabolism
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Female
  • Freeze Drying
  • Half-Life
  • Injections, Intravenous
  • Lactams, Macrocyclic
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Protein Binding
  • Rifabutin / analogs & derivatives
  • Rifabutin / blood
  • Rifabutin / pharmacokinetics*
  • Rifabutin / toxicity
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
  • Benzoquinones
  • Blood Proteins
  • Lactams, Macrocyclic
  • Rifabutin
  • tanespimycin