Review Articles Drug Interactions

Clinical Pharmacokinetics

, Volume 36, Issue 3, pp 233-254

Drug, Meal and Formulation Interactions Influencing Drug Absorption After Oral Administration

Clinical Implications
  • David FleisherAffiliated withCollege of Pharmacy, University of Michigan Email author 
  • , Cheng LiAffiliated withCollege of Pharmacy, University of Michigan
  • , Yuji ZhouAffiliated withCollege of Pharmacy, University of Michigan
  • , Li-Heng PaoAffiliated withDefence Medical Center
  • , Aziz KarimAffiliated withGD Searle & Co.

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Drug-drug, drug-formulation and drug-meal interactions are of clinical concern for orally administered drugs that possess a narrow therapeutic index. This review presents the current status of information regarding interactions which may influence the gastrointestinal (GI) absorption of orally administered drugs.

Absorption interactions have been classified on the basis of rate-limiting processes. These processes are put in the context of drug and formulation physicochemical properties and oral input influences on variable GI physiology. Interaction categorisation makes use of a biopharmaceutical classification system based on drug aqueous solubility and membrane permeability and their contributions towards absorption variability. Overlaying this classification it is important to be aware of the effect that the magnitudes of drug dosage and volume of fluid administration can have on interactions involving a solubility rate limits.

GI regional differences in membrane permeability are fundamental to the rational development of extended release dosage forms as well as to predicting interaction effects on absorption from immediate release dosage forms. The effect of meals on the regional-dependent intestinal elimination of drugs and their involvement in drug absorption interactions is also discussed. Although the clinical significance of such interactions is certainly dependent on the narrowness of the drug therapeutic index, clinical aspects of absorption delays and therapeutic failures resulting from various interactions are also important.