Resolving the physiological conditions in bioavailability and bioequivalence studies: Comparison of fasted and fed state

Eur J Pharm Biopharm. 2016 Nov;108:214-219. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpb.2016.09.009. Epub 2016 Sep 14.


In the present study temperature, pH and pressure profiles of nine healthy human volunteers were investigated after ingestion of the SmartPill® under conditions simulating the fasted state treatment in bioavailability and bioequivalence studies. In a previously published study the same subjects received the SmartPill® under fed conditions as recommended by the FDA. Since large non-digestible objects are mainly emptied during phase III of the interdigestive migrating motor complex, the gastric residence time of the SmartPill® was found to be clearly shorter under fasting conditions. Intragastric pH values during the initial 5min were similar with an identical median value of pH 4.6. Interestingly, the median lowest observed intragastric pH value in fasted state was about one pH unit higher than that under fed conditions. Highest pressure activity was observed within the stomach, in relation to gastric emptying. In fasted state, pressure values upon gastric emptying varied strongly between 30mbar and 304mbar, whereas after fed state ingestion values of at least 240mbar could always be observed. The data showed highly variable gastrointestinal parameters even under fasting conditions which must be considered when evaluating clinical studies and developing biorelevant in vitro test methods especially for large non-disintegrating dosage forms.

Keywords: Food effect; GI tract; Pressure; SmartPill; Temperature; Transit time; pH.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biological Availability
  • Body Mass Index
  • Digestion
  • Drug Carriers / chemistry*
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Fasting*
  • Female
  • Gastric Emptying / physiology
  • Gastrointestinal Transit / physiology
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Male
  • Pressure
  • Solubility
  • Stomach / drug effects
  • Temperature
  • Therapeutic Equivalency*
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult


  • Drug Carriers