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

Metabolic profiles of montelukast sodium (Singulair), a potent cysteinyl leukotriene1 receptor antagonist, in human plasma and bile.

Montelukast sodium [1-([(1(R)-(3-(2-(7-chloro-2-quinolinyl)-(E)- ethenyl)phenyl)-3-(2-(1-hydroxy-1-methylethyl)phenyl)propyl)thio]methyl)cyclopropylacetic acid sodium salt] (MK-476, Singulair) is a potent and selective antagonist of the cysteinyl leukotriene (Cys-LT1) receptor and is under investigation for the treatment of bronchial asthma. To assess the metabolism and excretion of montelukast, six healthy subjects received single oral doses of 102 mg of [14C]montelukast, and the urine and feces were collected. Most of the radioactivity was recovered in feces, with </=0.2% appearing in urine. Based on these results and the reported modestly high oral bioavailability of montelukast, it could be concluded that a major part of the radioactivity was excreted via bile. A second clinical study was conducted to identify biliary metabolites of montelukast. The bile was aspirated using a modified procedure involving a nasogastric tube placed fluoroscopically near the ampulla of Vater, after an oral dose of 54.8 mg of [14C]montelukast. This technique appears to be a new application for drug metabolism studies. The study was conducted with fasted and nonfasted subjects, with the bile being aspirated continuously under suction over periods of 2-8 hr and 8-12 hr after the dose, respectively. Two hours before the end of the collection procedure, cholecystokinin carboxyl-terminal octapeptide was administered iv to stimulate gallbladder contraction. Plasma samples also were collected periodically over 10 hr. Due to the nature of the collection procedure and the limited sampling time, recovery of radioactivity in bile was incomplete and varied from 3 to 20% of the dose. Radiochromatographic and LC-MS/MS analyses of bile showed the presence of one major and several minor metabolites, along with small amounts of unchanged parent drug. The minor metabolites were identified, by LC-MS/MS comparison with synthetic standards or by NMR, as acyl glucuronide (M1), sulfoxide (M2), 25-hydroxy (a phenol, M3), 21-hydroxy (diastereomers of a benzylic alcohol, M5a and M5b), and 36-hydroxy (diastereomers of a methyl alcohol, M6a and M6b) analogs of montelukast. The major metabolite was characterized as a dicarboxylic acid (M4), a product of further oxidation of the hydroxymethyl metabolite M6. Chiral LC-MS/MS analyses of M4 revealed that this diacid, like M5 and M6, was formed in both diastereomeric forms. The levels of metabolites in the systemic circulation were low in the fed as well as fasted subjects, with <2% of the circulating radioactivity being due to metabolites M5a, M5b, M6a, and M6b. Overall, this bile aspiration technique, which is less invasive than either T-tube drainage or fine-needle percutaneous puncture, provided a convenient and expedient means of identifying the biliary metabolites of montelukast, relatively free of contributions from colonic microflora.[1]


  1. Metabolic profiles of montelukast sodium (Singulair), a potent cysteinyl leukotriene1 receptor antagonist, in human plasma and bile. Balani, S.K., Xu, X., Pratha, V., Koss, M.A., Amin, R.D., Dufresne, C., Miller, R.R., Arison, B.H., Doss, G.A., Chiba, M., Freeman, A., Holland, S.D., Schwartz, J.I., Lasseter, K.C., Gertz, B.J., Isenberg, J.I., Rogers, J.D., Lin, J.H., Baillie, T.A. Drug Metab. Dispos. (1997) [Pubmed]
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