Population in vitro–in vivo pharmacokinetic model of first-pass metabolism: itraconazole and hydroxy-itraconazole

Ahmad Y. Abuhelwa, Stuart Mudge, Richard N. Upton, David J.R. Foster

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to develop a population in vitro–in vivo pharmacokinetic model that simultaneously describe the absorption and accumulation kinetics of itraconazole (ICZ) and hydroxy-itraconazole (HICZ) in healthy subjects. The model integrated meta-models of gastrointestinal pH and gastrointestinal transit time and in vitro dissolution models of ICZ with the absorption and disposition kinetics of ICZ and HICZ. Mean concentration intravenous data, and single- and multi-dose oral data were used for model development. Model development was conducted in NONMEM in a stepwise manner. First, a model of intravenous data (systemic kinetics) was established and then extended to include the oral data. The latter was then extended to establish the in vitro–in vivo pharmacokinetic model. The systemic disposition of ICZ was best described by a 3-compartment model with oral absorption described by 4-transit compartments and HICZ distribution by a 1-compartment model. ICZ clearance was best described using a mixed inhibition model that allowed HICZ concentrations to inhibit the clearance of parent drug. HICZ clearance was described by Michaelis–Menten elimination kinetics. An in vitro–in vivo model was successfully established for both formulations. The presented model was able to describe ICZ and HICZ plasma concentrations over a wide range of oral and intravenous doses and allowed the exploration of complexities associated with the non-linear ICZ and HICZ kinetics. The model may provide insight into the variability in exposure of ICZ with respect to relating in vivo dissolution characteristics with in vivo disposition kinetics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-197
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics
Issue number2
Early online date17 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • First-pass metabolism
  • Gastrointestinal pH
  • In vitro–in vivo correlation
  • Itraconazole
  • Mixed-inhibition
  • Population pharmacokinetic


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