The use of lipid-based formulations (LBFs) in improving the absorption of poorly water-soluble drugs has now well established. Because the in vivo evaluation of LBFs is labor-intensive, in vitro or ex vivo approaches could provide advantages. In this study, a new ex vivo lipolysis-absorption model (evLAM) composed of an intestinal digestion system and an intestinal tissue system was developed to evaluate and predict the in vivo absorption performances of LBFs. Model factors, including the pH of the system and concentrations of D-glucose and pancreatic lipase, were investigated and optimized by a Box-Behnken design. To evaluate this new model, a lipid formulation of indomethacin, which was chosen based on preliminary studies of pseudo-ternary phase diagrams, emulsion droplets, and solubility, was further investigated by an in vivo pharmacokinetic study of rats, the everted gut sac model, and the evLAM, respectively. The absorption percentages obtained from the evLAM were much more similar to the data of rats in vivo than those from the everted gut sac model, showing a preferable in vitro-in vivo correlation (r = 0.9772). Compared with the conventional in vitro and in vivo methods, the evLAM, which allowed precise insights into the in vivo absorption characteristics without much time or a complicated process, could be a better tool for assessing LBFs of poorly water-soluble drugs.
- Lipid-based formulations
- Poorly water-soluble drugs