In vivo and in vitro studies of microsphere pancreatic supplements

J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1988;7 Suppl 1:S22-9. doi: 10.1097/00005176-198811001-00006.


Over the past 5 years, the Leeds Regional Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Unit has provided comprehensive annual assessments of CF patients that include dietary assessments and fat absorption studies. Enteric-coated microsphere pancreatic enzyme preparations (microsphere preparations) were compared to conventional enzymes as therapeutic agents for these patients. Presently in the U.K., two microsphere preparations are licensed for use and a further two products are likely to receive licenses in the near future. The success of these preparations is dependent on the ability of the microsphere coating to resist dissolution until the pH exceeds approximately 5.5 and thus prevent inactivation of lipase in the acid environment of the stomach. A study comparing Pancrex V Forte, a conventional enzyme preparation, to three microsphere preparations, Pancrease, Creon, and pancreatin Merck, confirmed the superiority of Pancrease and Creon over Pancrex V Forte and pancreatin Merck with regard to control of symptoms, and nitrogen and fat absorption. Because of differences in the physical characteristics of various microsphere preparations, the dissolution rates of Pancrease, Creon, and pancreatin Merck were compared in vitro. In aqueous buffers, striking differences among the preparations were seen at pH 5.5; whereas only 25% of available lipase was released from Creon, both Pancrease and pancreatin Merck show almost complete dissolution at this pH. Only at pH 6.5 and above do all three preparations show complete dissolution. In duodenal juice, as in aqueous buffers, lipase release from Creon takes place at a lower rate than with the other two preparations until pH 6.0 or higher is attained.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Albumins
  • Amylases / metabolism*
  • Amylases / pharmacokinetics
  • Bile Acids and Salts
  • Biological Availability
  • Child
  • Cystic Fibrosis / metabolism
  • Enzyme Stability
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Intestinal Secretions / metabolism
  • Lipase / metabolism*
  • Lipase / pharmacokinetics
  • Microspheres
  • Pancreatic Extracts / metabolism*
  • Pancreatic Extracts / pharmacokinetics
  • Pancreatin / metabolism*
  • Pancreatin / pharmacokinetics
  • Pancrelipase
  • Random Allocation


  • Albumins
  • Bile Acids and Salts
  • Pancreatic Extracts
  • Pancrex V
  • Pancrelipase
  • Pancreatin
  • Lipase
  • Amylases