Objectives: To evaluate zolpidem as a mechanism-based inactivator of human CYP3A in vitro, and to assess its metabolic interaction potential with CYP3A drugs (in vitro-in vivo extrapolation; IV-IVE).
Methods: A co- vs. pre-incubation strategy was used to quantify time-dependent inhibition of human liver microsomal (HLM) and recombinant CYP3A4 (rCYP3A4) by zolpidem. Experiments involving a 10-fold dilution step were employed to determine the kinetic constants of inactivation (K (I) and k (inact)) and to assess the in vitro mechanism-based inactivation (MBI) criteria. Inactivation data were entered into the Simcyp population-based ADME simulator to predict the increase in the area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC) for orally administered midazolam.
Results: Consistent with MBI, the inhibitory potency of zolpidem toward CYP3A was increased following pre-incubation. In HLMs, the concentration required for half maximal inactivation (K (I)) was 122 microM and the maximal rate of inactivation (k (inact)) was 0.094 min(-1). In comparison, K (I) and k (inact) values with rCYP3A4 were 50 microM and 0.229 min(-1), respectively. Zolpidem fulfilled all other in vitro MBI criteria, including irreversible inhibition. The mean oral AUC for midazolam in healthy volunteers was predicted to increase 1.1- to 1.7-fold due to the inhibition of metabolic clearance by zolpidem. Elderly subjects were more sensitive to the interaction, with mean increases in midazolam AUC of 1.2- and 2.2-fold for HLM IV-IVE and rCYP3A4 IV-IVE, respectively.
Conclusions: Zolpidem is a relatively weak mechanism-based inactivator of human CYP3A in vitro. Zolpidem is unlikely to act as a significant perpetrator of metabolic interactions involving CYP3A.