Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic modelling and simulation of oral drug bioavailability: Focus on bariatric surgery patients and mechanism-based inhibition of gut wall metabolism

  • Adam Darwich

Student thesis: Phd


AbstractTHE UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER,Abstract of thesis submitted by Adam S. Darwich, for the degree of PhD and entitled: "Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic modelling and simulation of oral drug bioavailability: Focus on bariatric surgery patients and mechanism-based inhibition of gut wall metabolism"Month and year of submission: November 2013.Understanding the processes that govern pre-systemic drug absorption and elimination is of high importance in pharmaceutical research and development, and clinical pharmacotherapy, as the oral route remains the most frequently used route of drug administration. The emergence of systems pharmacology has enabled the utilisation of in silico physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modelling and simulation (M&S) coupled to in vitro-in vivo extrapolation in order to perform extrapolation and exploratory M&S in special populations and scenarios were concerns regarding alterations in oral drug exposure may arise, such as following gastrointestinal (GI) surgery or metabolic drug-drug interactions (DDIs).Due to the multi-factorial physiological implications of bariatric surgery, resulting in the partial resection of the GI tract, the inability to rationalise and predict trends in oral drug bioavailability (Foral) following surgery present considerable pharmacotherapeutical challenges. PBPK M&S is a highly implemented approach for the prediction of DDIs. Reoccurring issues have emerged with regards to predictions of the magnitude of mechanism-based inhibition (MBI) where overestimations of DDIs have repeatedly been reported for drugs exhibiting high intestinal extraction.The aim of this thesis was to explore the interplay between oral drug absorption and metabolism occurring in the GI tract through the exploration of the impact of bariatric surgery on oral drug exposure and by theoretically examining the nesting and hierarchy of enterocyte and enzyme turnover and its impact on MBIs in the small intestine. This would be carried out by utilising a systems pharmacology PBPK M&S approach under a general model development framework of identification and characterisation of critical intrinsic factors and parameters, model implementation and validation.Developed post bariatric surgery PBPK models allow a framework to theoretically explore physiological mechanisms associated with altered oral drug exposure pre to post surgery, which could be assigned to the interplay between dissolution, absorption and gut-wall metabolism, where dissolution and formulation properties emerged as the perhaps most important parameters in predicting the drug disposition following surgery. Model validation identified missing critical factors that are essential for additional model refinement. Developed post bariatric surgery PBPK models have the potential of aiding clinical pharmacotherapy and decision-making following surgery. A mechanistic PBPK model was developed to describe the hierarchical dependency of enzyme and enterocyte turnover in the small intestine. Predicted enzyme recovery using the nested enzyme-within-enterocyte turnover model may potentially account for reported overpredictions of mechanism-based inhibition. Developed models in this thesis showcase the advantage of PBPK M&S in the extrapolation of oral drug exposure to special population and the potential of a PBPK approach in understanding underlying the underlying mechanism governing Foral and additionally highlight the need for generation of interdisciplinary data to support model development.
Date of Award1 Aug 2014
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorAmin Rostami-Hochaghan (Supervisor) & Darren Ashcroft (Supervisor)


  • Systems pharmacology
  • Gut-wall metabolism
  • Drug absorption
  • Oral bioavailability
  • Mechansim-based inhibition
  • Drug-drug interactions
  • Bariatric surgery
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic modelling and simulation
  • Gastric bypass
  • pharmacokinetic modelling

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