Evaluation of the intestinal toxicity and transport of xenobiotics utilizing precision-cut slices

Xenobiotica. 2013 Jan;43(1):73-83. doi: 10.3109/00498254.2012.729870. Epub 2012 Oct 30.


1.The precision-cut intestinal slice (PCIS) technology is a relatively new addition to the battery of in vitro assays for evaluation of xenobiotic toxicity, metabolism, and transport. 2.The intestine is an important target for drug-induced toxicity due to its high exposure after oral administration. Therefore, the prediction of drug-induced intestinal side effects remains a significant safety issue in pharmaceutical development. Although animal experiments have been proven useful, species differences and the requirement for reduction of animal use warrant the development of in vitro methods which can apply human tissue. 3.The enterocytes lining the villi express high activities of enzymes and transporters involved in drug disposition. They vary highly in activities: along the length of the intestine and along the villi, gradients of expression levels of the enzymes and proteins exist, which necessitates an in vitro model that can reflect the different regions of the intestine. 4.In this chapter, the application of PCIS in studies on transport and toxicity of xenobiotics is reviewed. PCIS can be prepared from each region of the intestine and from various species in a similar manner, and the results published so far indicate that they represent a promising model to evaluate intestinal toxicity and transport.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport / drug effects
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism*
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical / methods
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism*
  • Intestines / pathology
  • Microdissection / methods
  • Models, Biological*
  • Organ Culture Techniques / methods
  • Xenobiotics* / adverse effects
  • Xenobiotics* / pharmacokinetics
  • Xenobiotics* / pharmacology


  • Carrier Proteins
  • Xenobiotics