Gastrointestinal diseases and their impact on drug solubility: Crohn's disease

Angela Effinger, Caitriona M. O'Driscoll, Mark McAllister, Nikoletta Fotaki

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In order to investigate differences in drug solubilisation and dissolution in luminal fluids of Crohn's disease (CD) patients and healthy subjects, biorelevant media representative of CD patients were developed using information from literature and a Design of Experiment (DoE) approach. The CD media were characterised in terms of surface tension, osmolality, dynamic viscosity and buffer capacity and compared to healthy biorelevant media. To identify which drug characteristics are likely to present a high risk of altered drug solubility in CD, the solubility of six drugs was assessed in CD media and solubility differences were related to drug properties. Identified differences in CD patients compared to healthy subjects were a reduced concentration of bile salts, a higher gastric pH and a higher colonic osmolality. Differences in the properties of CD compared to healthy biorelevant media were mainly observed for surface tension and osmolality. Drug solubility of ionisable compounds was altered in gastric CD media compared to healthy biorelevant media. For drugs with moderate to high lipophilicity, a high risk of altered drug solubilisation in CD is expected, since a significant negative effect of log P and a positive effect of bile salts on drug solubility in colonic and fasted state intestinal CD media was observed. Simulating the conditions in CD patients in vitro offers the possibility to identify relevant differences in drug solubilisation without conducting expensive clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105459
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Early online date7 Jul 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2020


  • Biorelevant media
  • Crohn's disease
  • Gastrointestinal diseases
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Physicochemical properties
  • Solubility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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