Model-Based Analysis of Biopharmaceutic Experiments To Improve Mechanistic Oral Absorption Modeling: An Integrated in Vitro in Vivo Extrapolation Perspective Using Ketoconazole as a Model Drug

Mol Pharm. 2017 Dec 4;14(12):4305-4320. doi: 10.1021/acs.molpharmaceut.7b00406. Epub 2017 Aug 25.


Mechanistic modeling of in vitro data generated from metabolic enzyme systems (viz., liver microsomes, hepatocytes, rCYP enzymes, etc.) facilitates in vitro-in vivo extrapolation (IVIV_E) of metabolic clearance which plays a key role in the successful prediction of clearance in vivo within physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling. A similar concept can be applied to solubility and dissolution experiments whereby mechanistic modeling can be used to estimate intrinsic parameters required for mechanistic oral absorption simulation in vivo. However, this approach has not widely been applied within an integrated workflow. We present a stepwise modeling approach where relevant biopharmaceutics parameters for ketoconazole (KTZ) are determined and/or confirmed from the modeling of in vitro experiments before being directly used within a PBPK model. Modeling was applied to various in vitro experiments, namely: (a) aqueous solubility profiles to determine intrinsic solubility, salt limiting solubility factors and to verify pKa; (b) biorelevant solubility measurements to estimate bile-micelle partition coefficients; (c) fasted state simulated gastric fluid (FaSSGF) dissolution for formulation disintegration profiling; and (d) transfer experiments to estimate supersaturation and precipitation parameters. These parameters were then used within a PBPK model to predict the dissolved and total (i.e., including the precipitated fraction) concentrations of KTZ in the duodenum of a virtual population and compared against observed clinical data. The developed model well characterized the intraluminal dissolution, supersaturation, and precipitation behavior of KTZ. The mean simulated AUC0-t of the total and dissolved concentrations of KTZ were comparable to (within 2-fold of) the corresponding observed profile. Moreover, the developed PBPK model of KTZ successfully described the impact of supersaturation and precipitation on the systemic plasma concentration profiles of KTZ for 200, 300, and 400 mg doses. These results demonstrate that IVIV_E applied to biopharmaceutical experiments can be used to understand and build confidence in the quality of the input parameters and mechanistic models used for mechanistic oral absorption simulations in vivo, thereby improving the prediction performance of PBPK models. Moreover, this approach can inform the selection and design of in vitro experiments, potentially eliminating redundant experiments and thus helping to reduce the cost and time of drug product development.

Keywords: IVIV_E; PBPK; biopharmaceutics; dissolution modeling; ketoconazole; pharmacokinetics; precipitation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Absorption, Physiological
  • Administration, Oral
  • Biopharmaceutics / methods
  • Chemistry, Pharmaceutical
  • Computer Simulation
  • Drug Liberation*
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Absorption / physiology*
  • Ketoconazole / pharmacokinetics*
  • Models, Biological*
  • Models, Chemical
  • Permeability
  • Solubility


  • Ketoconazole