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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Ocular penetration and bioconversion of prostaglandin F2alpha prodrugs in rabbit cornea and conjunctiva.

The objective of this study was to identify prostaglandin F2alpha (PGF2alpha) prodrugs that have an optimal ocular absorption profile and therefore could be potentially useful for the treatment of glaucoma. Rabbit cornea, conjunctiva, and iris/ciliary body were mounted in a flow-through chamber to evaluate the permeability and bioconversion of PGF2alpha and its prodrugs. The prodrugs tested were PGF2alpha 1-isopropyl, 1,11-lactone, 15-acetyl, 15-pivaloyl, 15-valeryl, and 11,15-dipivaloyl esters. After 4 h in the donor or acceptor compartments, the products and formation of PGF2alpha were analyzed by HPLC. Effects on intraocular pressure and ocular surface hyperemia were also determined. All prodrugs penetrated the rabbit cornea faster than PGF2alpha by 4- to 83-fold. All prodrugs penetrated conjunctiva faster than PGF2alpha, except the 15-acetyl ester prodrug, which was equally permeable. No direct correlation between drug lipophilicity and permeability across the cornea or conjunctiva was apparent. The most metabolically stable prodrug was the 1,11-lactone, followed by the 11,15-dipivaloyl, 15-pivaloyl, 15-acetyl, 1-isopropyl, and the 15-valeryl esters, the latter of which was extensively converted to PGF2alpha. A separation index for various prodrugs was calculated from the ratio of the bioavailable PGF2alpha for ocular hypotension to the bioavailable PGF2alpha for hyperemia. The highest separation index was observed for the 1,11-lactone prodrug (2.33), followed by the 11,15-dipivaloyl ester prodrug (1.80). Thus the 1,11-lactone and 11,15-dipivaloyl ester prodrugs appeared to be superior to the others in providing bioavailable PGF2alpha for ocular hypotension, while minimizing hyperemia. The favorable separation index for these compounds appeared to be due to their metabolic stability at the corneal surface and conjunctiva combined with sufficient bioavailability for ocular hypotension.[1]


  1. Ocular penetration and bioconversion of prostaglandin F2alpha prodrugs in rabbit cornea and conjunctiva. Chien, D.S., Tang-Liu, D.D., Woodward, D.F. Journal of pharmaceutical sciences. (1997) [Pubmed]
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