Access of HTB, main metabolite of triflusal, to cerebrospinal fluid in healthy volunteers

Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2005 Apr;61(2):103-11. doi: 10.1007/s00228-004-0887-0. Epub 2005 Feb 12.


Objective: Triflusal has been shown to exert neuroprotective effects by downregulating molecules considered responsible for the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The aim of this study was to develop a population pharmacokinetic model to characterize plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pharmacokinetics of the main active metabolite of triflusal-HTB (2-hydroxy-4-trifluoro-methylbenzoic acid)-in healthy volunteers.

Methods: Data from two studies were combined. Study A: subjects received single oral doses of triflusal 900 mg. Triflusal and HTB plasma concentrations were extensively measured. Study B: triflusal 600 mg once daily was administered orally for 14 days. HTB plasma and CSF concentrations were determined in healthy volunteers. Population pharmacokinetic modeling was performed using NONMEM.

Results: A one-compartmental model with rapid first-order absorption for triflusal and first-order formation of HTB best described plasma concentrations. Triflusal elimination rate constant was 50 times faster than that estimated for the metabolite. CSF concentrations of HTB ranged between 0.011 microg/ml and 0.341 microg/ml. A CSF-plasma partition coefficient of 0.002 and a k(e0) value of 0.059 h(-1) were estimated by means of population modeling.

Conclusion: In the present study in healthy volunteers, HTB penetrated into the CSF in a range of concentrations experimentally proven to have protective effects in AD. These concentrations suggest that triflusal could be used in the treatment of central nervous system diseases in doses similar to those used in cardiovascular diseases. Access to the CSF compartment was characterized by a slow equilibrium rate constant and a low CSF-plasma partition coefficient.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / metabolism
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Clearance Rate
  • Models, Biological
  • Neuroprotective Agents / blood
  • Neuroprotective Agents / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacokinetics*
  • Salicylates / blood
  • Salicylates / cerebrospinal fluid*
  • Salicylates / pharmacokinetics*


  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Salicylates
  • triflusal
  • 4-trifluoromethylsalicylic acid