Flow cytometry in the preclinical development of biopharmaceuticals.
Novel biomarkers are often required in the preclinical development of biopharmaceuticals in order to characterize pharmacologic and toxicologic effects and to establish pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic relationships. Flow cytometry is uniquely suited for measurement of these biomarkers. Large numbers of single cells in a heterogeneous population can be rapidly identified and characterized with high accuracy and reproducibility. Cells are not damaged by the detection system and can be subsequently sorted for further morphologic or functional analysis. The availability of clinical instruments and a wide range of fluorescent probes have made this technology applicable for use in toxicologic clinical pathology. Flow cytometry has played an integral role in the development of a monoclonal antibody to human CD4 (keliximab, IDEC-CE9.1, SB 210396). Lymphocyte subset analysis and assays for expression, coating, and modulation of human CD4 were used for sequential assessment of the pharmacologic activity of keliximab in transgenic mice expressing human CD4. (+info)
Molecular pathology in the preclinical development of biopharmaceuticals.
Advances in cell and molecular biology have engendered a wide range of techniques that can be used to study the molecular events that underlie the cause of disease, thus producing a new field of study called "molecular pathology." These techniques can be either slide-based or non-slide-based (solution-based). The slide-based techniques include immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, and in situ polymerase chain reaction; pathologists play a unique role in the administration of these techniques because of their ability to interpret the end product (i.e., the slide). In this manuscript, we briefly discussed the use and impact of these slide-based techniques within all phases of drug development in the pharmaceutical industry. (+info)
The pathologist and toxicologist in pharmaceutical product discovery.
Significant change is occurring in the drug discovery paradigm; many companies are utilizing dedicated groups from the toxicology/ pathology disciplines to support early stage activities. The goal is to improve the efficiency of the discovery process for selecting a successful clinical candidate. Toxicity can be predicted by leveraging molecular techniques via rapid high-throughput, low-resource in vitro and in vivo test systems. Several important activities help create a platform to support rapid development of a new molecular entity. The proceedings of this symposium provide excellent examples of these applied concepts in pharmaceutical research and development. Leading biopharmaceutical companies recognize that a competitive advantage can be maintained via rapid characterization of animal models, the cellular identification of therapeutic targets, and improved sensitivity of efficacy assessment. The participation of the molecular pathologist in this quest is evolving rapidly, as evidenced by the growing number of pathologists that interact with drug discovery organizations. (+info)
Biological activity of catecholamines covalently linked to synthetic polymers: proof of immobilized drug theory.
l-Isoproterenol was covalently coupled via an azo linkage to soluble copolypeptides of molecular weight 1500 and 10,000 containing an aromatic amine. The polymeric azo-isoproterenol derivatives were purified by gel chromatography which reduced contamination by the parent isoproterenol to undetectable levels (i.e., less than 0.01%) and by 6-aminoisoproterenol to less than 0.4%. Both polymeric isoproterenol derivatives were found to elicit positive chronotropic responses in isolated perfused guinea pig hearts. The mean effective doses (ED50S) for the 1500 and 10,000 molecular weight derivatives were within 1.3 and 2.0 orders of magnitude, respectively, of the ED50 of l-isoproterenol. The responses cannot be attributed to free isoproterenol because this drug could not be detected in our preparations. Neither can the observed biological activity be attributed to 6-aminoisoproterenol, since this compound's dose-response is shifted 3 orders of magnitude to the right of l-isoproterenol and 1-2 orders of magnitude to the right of the polymeric derivatives. Inotropic response decay times in isolated cat papillary muscles following washouts indicate that the polymer-bound drug does not diffuse into the muscle tissues. We feel that our findings demonstrate that under controlled conditions the catecholamines can retain biological activity while covalently bound to a polymeric support. (+info)
The dopamine transporter and cocaine medication development: drug self-administration in nonhuman primates.
Despite intensive medication development efforts, no effective pharmacotherapy for cocaine abuse has demonstrated efficacy for long-term use. Given the obvious importance of the dopamine transporter in the addictive properties of cocaine, the development and use of compounds that target the dopamine transporter represents a reasonable approach for the pharmacological treatment of cocaine abuse. The therapeutic approach of replacement or substitute agonist medication has been successful, as shown with methadone maintenance for heroin dependence and nicotine replacement for tobacco use. A number of preclinical studies with dopamine transporter inhibitors provide evidence that substitute agonists may be used effectively to reduce cocaine use. Nonhuman primate models of drug self-administration provide a rigorous, systematic approach to characterize medication effectiveness in subjects with a documented history of drug use. Several cocaine analogs and other dopamine transporter inhibitors, including analogs of GBR 12909 and WIN 35,065-2, have been shown to reduce cocaine self-administration in nonhuman primates. A possible limitation to the use of selective dopamine transporter inhibitors as medications is their potential for abuse liability given their demonstrated reinforcing effects in nonhuman primates. However, limited reinforcing properties in the context of treatment programs may be advantageous, contributing to improved patient compliance and enhanced medication effectiveness. Moreover, pharmacokinetic properties that result in slow onset and long duration of action may enhance their effectiveness to reduce cocaine use while limiting their abuse liability. (+info)
The chemical and physical stability of a 1:1 mixture of propofol and methohexital.
Anesthetic drugs are frequently mixed or coadministered to optimize anesthetic effects while minimizing adverse effects. Methohexital advantages include its low cost and rapid onset, while propofol provides improved airway anesthesia and extremely rapid clearance from the plasma. Therefore, a mixture of these agents might well be superior to either drug given alone. We wished to determine whether a mixture of methohexital and propofol is chemically and physically stable. A 1:1 mixture of propofol 10 mg/ml and methohexital was prepared. At times varying from 0 to 48 hours, mixtures with an internal standard of thymol kept at room temperature were thrice extracted with a 2:1 v/v mixture of diethyl ether:pentane, dried under nitrogen, and treated overnight with bis-trimethylsilyl-trifluoroacetamide. The resultant derivatives were transferred to microsample vials and analyzed by GC-MS. Drug stability was quantified by electronic integration of peak areas representing characteristic ions for each drug. For each sample, the peak area of the methohexital ion (m/z 239) or propofol ion (m/z 235) relative to the corresponding thymol ion (m/z 207) served as an index of the concentration of the drug in the sample. At times varying from 0 to 48 hours, mixtures without thymol were used to determine mean droplet size of the particles. This was accomplished using both an Accusizer and a Nicomp 370 Particle Sizer. One way ANOVA tested for significant changes in drug concentrations and mean particle size as a function of time. There was no significant breakdown of propofol or methohexital when combined in a 1:1 mixture and allowed to stand for 48 hours, nor was there an increase in particle size suggestive of emulsion instability. We concluded that a 1:1 mixture of propofol and methohexital was stable up to 48 hours after mixing. (+info)
Milestones in chloroplast genetic engineering: an environmentally friendly era in biotechnology.
Chloroplast genomes defied the laws of Mendelian inheritance at the dawn of plant genetics, and continue to defy the mainstream approach to biotechnology, leading the field in an environmentally friendly direction. Recent success in engineering the chloroplast genome for resistance to herbicides, insects, disease and drought, and for production of biopharmaceuticals, has opened the door to a new era in biotechnology. The successful engineering of tomato chromoplasts for high-level transgene expression in fruits, coupled to hyper-expression of vaccine antigens, and the use of plant-derived antibiotic-free selectable markers, augur well for oral delivery of edible vaccines and biopharmaceuticals that are currently beyond the reach of those who need them most. (+info)
Multigene engineering: dawn of an exciting new era in biotechnology.
Development of a rice variety enriched in provitamin A, the accumulation of polyhydroxybutyrate polyester in Arabidopsis nuclear transgenic plants (with enzymes targeted to chloroplasts in both), and the expression of bacterial operons via the chloroplast genome are recent landmark achievements in multigene engineering. Hyper-expression of transgenes has resulted in the formation of insecticidal protein crystals or inclusion bodies of pharmaceutical proteins in transgenic chloroplasts, achieving the highest level of transgene expression ever reported in transgenic plants. These achievements illustrate the potential of multigene engineering to realize benefits of the post-genomic revolution. (+info)