Purpose. Prolonged continuous administration of nitroglycerin (NTG) leads to hemodynamic tolerance. We used a previously developed pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic (PK/PD) model of NTG tolerance in experimental heart failure to test whether dosage regimens, designed from this model, may allow avoidance of tolerance development upon continuous NTG inftision.
Methods. Simulation experiments (using ADAPT II) were performed to evolve a time-variant infusion regimen that would theoretically provide sustained hemodynamic effect (30% reduction in left ventricular end-diastolic pressure, LVEDP) throughout 10 hours of drug dosing. A computer controlled infusion pump was utilized to deliver this time-variant input. Infusion experiments were then conducted in CHF rats to challenge the predictability of the applied PK/PD model.
Results. Simulations showed that exponentially increasing input functions provided more sustained LVEDP effects when compared to linear or hyperbolic input functions delivering the same total NTG dose. A computer-selected infusion regimen of 6.56e0.00156×minutes μg/min was anticipated to provide the desired hemodynamic profile in our animal model. Experiments conducted in rats with congestive heart failure (n = 4) confirmed the prediction of sustained hemodynamic effect without tolerance (28 ± 4% reduction in LVEDP at 10 hrs).
Conclusions. These findings support the utility of our PK/PD model of NTG tolerance in predicting NTG action, and serve as an example of therapeutic optimization through PK/PD considerations.