Simulations of the nonlinear dose dependence for substrates of influx and efflux transporters in the human intestine

AAPS J. 2009 Jun;11(2):353-63. doi: 10.1208/s12248-009-9111-6. Epub 2009 May 12.


The purpose of this study was to develop simulation and modeling methods for the evaluation of pharmacokinetics when intestinal influx and efflux transporters are involved in gastrointestinal absorption. The advanced compartmental absorption and transit (ACAT) model as part of the computer program GastroPlus was used to simulate the absorption and pharmacokinetics of valacyclovir, gabapentin, and talinolol. Each of these drugs is a substrate for an influx or efflux transporter and all show nonlinear dose dependence within the normal therapeutic range. These simulations incorporated the experimentally derived gastrointestinal distributions of transporter expression levels for oligopeptide transporters PepT1 and HPT1 (valacyclovir); System L-amino acid transporter LAT2 and organic cation transporter OCTN1 (gabapentin); and organic anion transporter (OATP1A2) and P-glycoprotein (talinolol). By assuming a uniform distribution of oligopeptide transporter and by application of the in vitro K(m) value for valacyclovir, the simulations accurately reproduced the experimental nonlinear dose dependence. For gabapentin, LAT2 distribution produced simulation results that were much more accurate than OCTN1 distributions. For talinolol, an influx transporter distribution for OATP1A2 and the efflux transporter P-glycoprotein distributed with increasing expression in the distal small intestine produced the best results. The physiological characteristics of the small and large intestines used in the ACAT model were able to accurately account for the positional and temporal changes in concentration and carrier-mediated transport of the three drugs included in this study. The ACAT model reproduced the nonlinear dose dependence for each of these drugs.

MeSH terms

  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 1 / metabolism
  • Acyclovir / administration & dosage
  • Acyclovir / analogs & derivatives
  • Acyclovir / pharmacokinetics
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists / administration & dosage
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists / pharmacokinetics
  • Amines / administration & dosage
  • Amines / pharmacokinetics
  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacokinetics
  • Biological Transport, Active
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Cyclohexanecarboxylic Acids / administration & dosage
  • Cyclohexanecarboxylic Acids / pharmacokinetics
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / administration & dosage
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / pharmacokinetics
  • Gabapentin
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism*
  • Nonlinear Dynamics
  • Organic Anion Transporters / administration & dosage
  • Organic Anion Transporters / metabolism
  • Permeability
  • Propanolamines / pharmacokinetics
  • Rats
  • Solubility
  • Valacyclovir
  • Valine / administration & dosage
  • Valine / analogs & derivatives
  • Valine / pharmacokinetics
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / administration & dosage
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / pharmacokinetics


  • ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 1
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists
  • Amines
  • Antiviral Agents
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Cyclohexanecarboxylic Acids
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists
  • Organic Anion Transporters
  • Propanolamines
  • SLCO1A2 protein, human
  • talinolol
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
  • Gabapentin
  • Valine
  • Valacyclovir
  • Acyclovir