Interaction of the antiviral drug telaprevir with renal and hepatic drug transporters

Biochem Pharmacol. 2012 Oct 15;84(8):1096-102. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2012.07.032. Epub 2012 Aug 4.


Telaprevir is a new, direct-acting antiviral drug that has been approved for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C viral infection. First data on drug-drug interactions with co-medications such as cyclosporine, tacrolimus and atorvastatin have been reported recently. Drug transporting proteins have been shown to play an important role in clinically observed drug-drug interactions. The aim of this study was therefore to systematically investigate the potential of telaprevir to inhibit drug transporting proteins. The effect of telaprevir on substrate uptake mediated by drug transporters located in human kidney and liver was investigated on a functional level in HEK293 cell lines that over-express single transporter. Telaprevir was shown to exhibit significant inhibition of the human renal drug transporters OCT2 and MATE1 with IC(50) values of 6.4 μM and 23.0 μM, respectively, whereas no inhibitory effect on OAT1 and OAT3 mediated transport by telaprevir was demonstrated. Liver drug transporters were inhibited with an IC(50) of 2.2 μM for OATP1B1, 6.8 μM for OATP1B3 and 20.7 μM for OCT1. Our data show that telaprevir exhibited significant potential to inhibit human drug transporters. In view of the inhibitory potential of telaprevir, clinical co-administration of telaprevir together with drugs that are substrates of renal or hepatic transporters should be carefully monitored.

MeSH terms

  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacology*
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Kidney / drug effects*
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Liver / drug effects*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Oligopeptides / pharmacology*
  • Organic Anion Transporters / drug effects*
  • Organic Anion Transporters / metabolism


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Oligopeptides
  • Organic Anion Transporters
  • telaprevir