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The Effect of Different Concentrations of Mannitol in Solution on Small Intestinal Transit: Implications for Drug Absorption

Abstract

The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect that different concentrations of mannitol have on small intestinal transit, and whether any observed effect was concentration dependent. Eight, healthy male subjects each received 200ml of radiolabelled purified water, or a 200ml solution of mannitol at three different concentrations; 0.755g/200ml, 1.509g/200ml and 2.264g/200ml, in a randomised, four way cross-over study. Transit of the radiolabelled solutions was followed by gamma scintigraphy. The study demonstrated no significant differences between the gastric emptying times of the four solutions. Rapid gastric emptying was observed in most cases. The mean small intestinal transit times for the 0.755g/200ml, 1.509g/200ml and 2.264g/200ml mannitol solutions was reduced by 11%, 23% and 34% respectively, when compared to the control solution. The intestinal transit data of the four solutions demonstrate that mannitol has a concentration dependent effect on small intestinal transit. Small concentrations of mannitol included in a pharmaceutical formulation could therefore lead to reduced uptake with any drug exclusively absorbed from the small intestine.

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Correspondence to Ian R. Wilding.

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Adkin, D.A., Davis, S.S., Sparrow, R.A. et al. The Effect of Different Concentrations of Mannitol in Solution on Small Intestinal Transit: Implications for Drug Absorption. Pharm Res 12, 393–396 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1016256619309

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  • mannitol
  • small intestinal transit
  • drug absorption
  • gamma scintigraphy