Back to Journals » International Journal of Nanomedicine » Volume 14

Intestinal transport mechanism and in vivo anticancer efficacy of a solid oral formulation incorporating an ion-pairing complex of pemetrexed with deoxycholic acid derivative

Authors Pangeni R, Jha SK, Maharjan R, Choi JU, Chang KY, Choi YK, Byun Y, Park JW

Received 23 March 2019

Accepted for publication 27 July 2019

Published 8 August 2019 Volume 2019:14 Pages 6339—6356


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Anderson Oliveira Lobo

Rudra Pangeni,1,* Saurav Kumar Jha,1,* Ruby Maharjan,2 Jeong Uk Choi,2 Kwan-Young Chang,3 Young Kweon Choi,3 Youngro Byun,4 Jin Woo Park1

1Department of Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy and Natural Medicine Research Institute, Mokpo National University, Jeonnam 58554, Republic of Korea; 2Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Republic of Korea; 3Global R&D Center, Icure BNP, Seoul 06170, Republic of Korea; 4Department of Molecular Medicine and Biopharmaceutical Science, Graduate School of Convergence Science and Technology, College of Pharmacy, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Republic of Korea

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Objective: The rational combination of immunotherapy with standard chemotherapy shows synergistic clinical activities in cancer treatment. In the present study, an oral powder formulation of pemetrexed (PMX) was developed to enhance intestinal membrane permeability and investigate its application in metronomic chemotherapy in combination with immunotherapy.
Methods: PMX was ionically complexed with a bile acid derivative (Nα-deoxycholyl-l-lysyl-methylester; DCK) as a permeation enhancer and mixed with dispersing agents, such as poloxamer 188 (P188) and Labrasol, to form an amorphous oral powder formulation of PMX/DCK (PMX/DCK-OP).
Results: The apparent permeability (Papp) of PMX/DCK-OP across a Caco-2 cell monolayer was 2.46- and 8.26-fold greater than that of PMX/DCK and free PMX, respectively, which may have been due to the specific interaction of DCK with bile acid transporters, as well as the alteration of membrane fluidity due to Labrasol and P188. Furthermore, inhibition of bile acid transporters by actinomycin D in Caco-2 cell monolayers decreased the Papp of PMX/DCK-OP by 75.4%, suggesting a predominant role of bile acid transporters in the intestinal absorption of PMX/DCK-OP. In addition, caveola/lipid raft-dependent endocytosis, macropinocytosis, passive diffusion, and paracellular transport mechanisms significantly influenced the permeation of PMX/DCK-OP through the intestinal membrane. Therefore, the oral bioavailability of PMX/DCK-OP in rats was 19.8%±6.93%, which was 294% higher than that of oral PMX. Moreover, an in vivo anticancer efficacy study in B16F10 cell-bearing mice treated with a combination of oral PMX/DCK-OP and intraperitoneal anti-PD1 exhibited significant suppression of tumor growth, and the tumor volume was maximally inhibited by 2.03- and 3.16-fold compared to the oral PMX/DCK-OP and control groups, respectively.
Conclusion: These findings indicated the therapeutic potential of a combination of low-dose oral chemotherapy and immunotherapy for synergistic anticancer efficacy.

Keywords: pemetrexed, bile acid derivative, oral powder formulation, intestinal membrane permeability, oral delivery, oral metronomic chemotherapy

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]