Hirvonen, J., Rytting, J.H., Paronen, P. et al. Pharm Res (1991) 8: 933. doi:10.1023/A:1015824100788
The effectiveness of the penetration enhancers, dodecyl N, N-dimethylamino acetate (DDAA) and Azone, on pretreated human epidermis for the permeation of model drugs, indomethacin, 5-fluorouracil, and propranolol-HCl, was studied in in vitro diffusion cells. Snakeskin (Elaphe obsoleta) and rabbit pinna skin were compared as possible models for human skin. The drug concentrations were analyzed by HPLC. With all skins and all model drugs, DDAA increased drug permeability at least as well as Azone, and in most cases it was a more effective permeation enhancer. The relative permeation improvements in human skin, snakeskin, and rabbit skin were 10- to 20-, 5- to 50-, and 20- to 120-fold, respectively. Tritiated water served as an indicator of skin condition. Its penetration in the skin samples was independent of the drugs used, and both penetration enhancers significantly increased the flux of tritiated water through all skins. Thus, DDAA and Azone significantly increased the permeation of lipophilic and hydrophilic model compounds. Rabbit pinna skin was a poor model for human skin in vitro, while snakeskin was much closer to human skin in terms of transdermal permeability. In most cases drug permeability decreased in the order rabbit ≫ human > or < snake.