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Title: Mechanistic Studies of Branched-Chain Alkanols as Skin Permeation Enhancers
Authors: Doungdaw Chantasart
S. Kevin Li
Ning He
Kevin S. Warner
Sompol Prakongpan
William I. Higuchi
Mahidol University
University of Utah
Keywords: Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics
Issue Date: 1-Jan-2004
Citation: Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Vol.93, No.3 (2004), 762-779
Abstract: As part of a long-term effort to understand the structure/function relationship between chemical permeation enhancers and skin permeation enhancement, the present study examined the influence of hydrocarbon chain branching on the effectiveness of skin permeation enhancers of the type that possesses a polar group (e.g., the hydroxyl group) attached to a hydrocarbon chain(s). The effects of x-hexanol, x-heptanol, x-octanol, and x-nonanol (where x is the position of the hydroxyl group ranging from 1 up to 5) on the transport of a probe permeant, corticosterone, across hairless mouse skin (HMS) were investigated. Isoenhancement concentrations are defined as the aqueous concentrations for which different enhancers induce the same extent of permeant transport enhancement, E, across the lipoidal pathway of stratum corneum (SC). The isoenhancement concentrations of 2-alkanol, 3-alkanol, 4-alkanol, and 5-alkanol to induce E = 10 were approximately 1.9-, 2.6-, 3.1-, and 3.9-fold higher, respectively, than those of the 1-alkanols of the same molecular formula. This suggested that the branched-chain alkanols have lower enhancer potency than the 1-alkanols of the same molecular formula; the potency decreases as the hydroxyl group moves from the end of the chain towards the center of the enhancer alkyl chain. To further investigate the mechanism(s) of action of the branched-chain alkanols as skin permeation enhancers, the equilibrium uptake of the enhancers into the hairless mouse skin stratum corneum (HMS SC) from aqueous enhancer solutions of E= 10 was determined. The data from these experiments provided a direct measure of the "intrinsic" potency of the enhancer. In the same experiments, the equilibrium partitioning (distribution) of a surrogate permeant, estradiol (E2β), into the HMS SC was also determined and compared to the partitioning from PBS (no enhancer present). The uptake amounts (micromole/mg SC) for 1-alkanols into the intercellular lipids of the SC were found to be essentially the same at their isoenhancement concentrations. However, at their isoenhancement concentrations, the uptake amounts of the branched-chain alkanols into the intercellular lipids of HMS SC were higher than those of the 1-alkanols. These results support the view that: (1) the intrinsic potencies of the 1-alkanols are essentially the same and independent of their 1-alkyl chain length at their isoenhancement concentrations, (2) the intrinsic potencies of the branched-chain alkanols are lower than those of the normal alkanols, and (3) branching of the alkyl chain reduces the ability of the enhancer to effect lipid fluidization in the SC lipid lamellae at the target site(s). The enhancement effects of the branched-chain alkanols and the 1-alkanols at their isoenhancement concentrations upon E2β partitioning into the SC intercellular lipids were found to be approximately the same and in the range of five- to eight-fold enhancement. The constancy of this enhancement for E2β partitioning suggests that the mechanism of enhancement action for the branched-chain alkanols and the 1-alkanols are the same. Additionally, a good correlation of the intercellular lipid/PBS partition coefficients of both the branched-chain alkanols and the 1-alkanols with the n-octanol/PBS partition coefficients was found. This supports the view that the chemical microenvironment of the polar head group and the alkyl group of the studied enhancers at the site of skin permeation enhancer action in the SC lipid lamellae can be represented by water-saturated n-octanol for both the branched-chain alkanols and the 1-alkanols. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc. and the American Pharmacists Association.
ISSN: 00223549
Appears in Collections:Scopus 2001-2005

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