Karl-Heinz Kostka

Caritas-Krankenhaus Lebach, Lebach, Saarland, Germany

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Publications (11)46.34 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: In vitro testing of drugs with excised human skin is a valuable prerequisite for clinical studies. However, the analysis of excised human skin presents several obstacles. Ongoing drug diffusion, microbial growth and changes in hydration state influence the results of drug penetration studies. In this work, we evaluate freeze-drying as a preserving preparation method for skin samples to overcome these obstacles. We analyse excised human skin before and after freeze-drying and compare these results with human skin in vivo. Based on comprehensive thermal and spectroscopic analysis, we demonstrate comparability to in vivo conditions and exclude significant changes within the skin samples due to freeze-drying. Furthermore, we show that freeze-drying after skin incubation with drugs prevents growth of drug crystals on the skin surface due to drying effects. In conclusion, we introduce freeze-drying as a preserving preparation technique for in vitro testing of human skin.
    Experimental Dermatology 01/2013; 22(1):54-6. · 4.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: For finite dose skin absorption experiments, a homogeneous donor distribution over the skin surface is usually assumed. However, the influence of the surface distribution on skin absorption is still unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of the application area on the permeation of drugs during finite dose skin absorption experiments in static Franz diffusion cells. Permeation experiments with stained aqueous drug formulations were conducted, and the application area was determined by a suitable, objective, automated computational approach. The permeation of caffeine is strongly dependent on the application area. The variability between single experiments decreased when including the application area. For the lipophilic flufenamic acid, this was not the case. The variability highly increased after inclusion of the application area. Thus, a correction of the area is misleading. In summary, depending on the drug's physicochemical characteristics, the application area may influence skin absorption.
    Experimental Dermatology 03/2012; 21(3):233-5. · 4.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Multiphoton microscopy has become popular in studying dermal nanoparticle penetration. This necessitates studying the imaging parameters of multiphoton microscopy in skin as an imaging medium, in terms of achievable detection depths and the resolution limit. This would simulate real-case scenarios rather than depending on theoretical values determined under ideal conditions. This study has focused on depth profiling of sub-resolution gold nanoparticles (AuNP) in reconstructed (fixed and unfixed) and human skin using multiphoton microscopy. Point spread functions (PSF) were determined for the used water-immersion objective of 63×/NA = 1.2. Factors such as skin-tissue compactness and the presence of wrinkles were found to deteriorate the accuracy of depth profiling. A broad range of AuNP detectable depths (20-100 μm) in reconstructed skin was observed. AuNP could only be detected up to ∼14 μm depth in human skin. Lateral (0.5 ± 0.1 μm) and axial (1.0 ± 0.3 μm) PSF in reconstructed and human specimens were determined. Skin cells and intercellular components didn't degrade the PSF with depth. In summary, the imaging parameters of multiphoton microscopy in skin and practical limitations encountered in tracking nanoparticle penetration using this approach were investigated.
    Journal of Biophotonics 01/2012; 5(1):85-96. · 3.86 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aims of this work were to increase the photostability and to reduce the skin permeation of tretinoin through nanoencapsulation. Tretinoin is widely used in the topical treatment of various dermatological diseases such as acne, psoriasis, skin cancer, and photoaging. Tretinoin-loaded lipid-core polymeric nanocapsules were prepared by interfacial deposition of a preformed polymer. Carbopol hydrogels containing nanoencapsulated tretinoin presented a pH value of 6.08±0.14, a drug content of 0.52±0.01 mg g(-1), pseudoplastic rheological behavior, and higher spreadability than a marketed formulation. Hydrogels containing nanoencapsulated tretinoin demonstrated a lower photodegradation (24.17±3.49%) than the formulation containing the non-encapsulated drug (68.64±2.92%) after 8h of ultraviolet A irradiation. The half-life of the former was seven times higher than the latter. There was a decrease in the skin permeability coefficient of the drug by nanoencapsulation, independently of the dosage form. The liquid suspension and the semisolid form provided K(p)=0.31±0.15 and K(p)=0.33±0.01 cm s(-1), respectively (p≤0.05), while the samples containing non-encapsulated tretinoin showed K(p)=1.80±0.27 and K(p)=0.73±0.12 cm s(-1) for tretinoin solution and hydrogel, respectively. Lag time was increased two times by nanoencapsulation, meaning that the drug is retained for a longer time on the skin surface.
    European journal of pharmaceutics and biopharmaceutics: official journal of Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur Pharmazeutische Verfahrenstechnik e.V 03/2011; 79(1):95-101. · 3.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate mechanisms of compound-corneocyte interactions in a combined experimental and theoretical approach. Experimental methods are presented to investigate compound-corneocyte interactions in terms of dissolution within water of hydration and protein binding and to quantify the extent of the concurrent mechanisms. Results are presented for three compounds: caffeine, flufenamic acid, and testosterone. Two compartmental stratum corneum models M1 and M2 are formulated based on experimentally determined input parameters describing the affinity to lipid, proteins and water. M1 features a homogeneous protein compartment and considers protein interactions only via intra-corneocyte water. In M2 the protein compartment is sub-divided into a cornified envelope compartment interacting with inter-cellular lipids and a keratin compartment interacting with water. For the non-protein binding caffeine the impact of the aqueous compartment on stratum corneum partitioning is overestimated but is successfully modeled after introducing a bound water fraction that is non-accessible for compound dissolution. For lipophilic, keratin binding compounds (flufenamic acid, testosterone) only M2 correctly predicts a concentration dependence of stratum corneum partition coefficients. Lipophilic and hydrophilic compounds interact with corneocytes. Interactions of lipophilic compounds are probably confined to the corneocyte surface. Interactions with intracellular keratin may be limited by their low aqueous solubility.
    Pharmaceutical Research 03/2009; 26(6):1379-97. · 4.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mathematical modeling of skin transport is considered a valuable alternative of in-vitro and in-vivo investigations especially considering ethical and economical questions. Mechanistic diffusion models describe skin transport by solving Fick's 2nd law of diffusion in time and space; however models relying entirely on a consistent experimental data set are missing. For a two-dimensional model membrane consisting of a biphasic stratum corneum (SC) and a homogeneous epidermal/dermal compartment (DSL) methods are presented to determine all relevant input parameters. The data were generated for flufenamic acid (M(W) 281.24g/mol; logK(Oct/H2O) 4.8; pK(a) 3.9) and caffeine (M(W) 194.2g/mol; logK(Oct/H2O) -0.083; pK(a) 1.39) using female abdominal skin. K(lip/don) (lipid-donor partition coefficient) was determined in equilibration experiments with human SC lipids. K(cor/lip) (corneocyte-lipid) and K(DSL/lip) (DSL-lipid) were derived from easily available experimental data, i.e. K(SC/don) (SC-donor), K(lip/don) and K(SC/DSL) (SC-DSL) considering realistic volume fractions of the lipid and corneocyte phases. Lipid and DSL diffusion coefficients D(lip) and D(DSL) were calculated based on steady state flux. The corneocyte diffusion coefficient D(cor) is not accessible experimentally and needs to be estimated by simulation. Based on these results time-dependent stratum corneum concentration-depth profiles were simulated and compared to experimental profiles in an accompanying study.
    European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics 03/2008; 68(2):352-67. · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Essential oils are widely used in pharmaceutical and cosmetic preparations e.g. as fragrance, active ingredient or penetration enhancer. However, reports on skin absorption are rare. Therefore, the aim of our study was to investigate the capability of terpinen-4-ol, the main compound of Australian tea tree oil (TTO), to permeate human skin. In static Franz diffusion cells permeation experiments with heat separated human epidermis were carried out using infinite dosing conditions and compared to liberation experiments. The flux values of three different semisolid preparations with 5% TTO showed the rank order semisolid O/W emulsion (0.067 microl/cm2 h) > white petrolatum (0.051 microl/cm2 h) > ambiphilic cream (0.022 microl/cm2 h). In comparison to the flux value obtained with the native TTO (0.26 microl/cm2 h), the flux values are remarkably reduced due to the lower amount of terpinen-4-ol. P(app) values for cream (2.74+/-0.06 x 10(-7) cm/s) and native TTO (1.62+/-0.12 x 10(-7) cm/s) are comparable whereas white petrolatum (6.36+/-0.21 x 10(-7) cm/s) and semisolid O/W emulsion (8.41+/-0.15 x 10(-7) cm/s) demonstrated higher values indicating a penetration enhancement. No relationship between permeation and liberation was found.
    European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics 10/2006; 64(2):222-8. · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The suitability of transepidermal water loss (TEWL) measurements in vitro as a barrier integrity test for human heat separated epidermis (HSE) was investigated. A model system consisting of a Teflon membrane mounted in Franz diffusion cells (FDC) filled with phosphate buffer saline (PBS) was set up. The membrane was used intact and punctured with a needle (up to five holes). After each puncturing the TEWL was measured. Only the TEWL of intact and punctured membrane differed significantly regardless of the number of holes. From three donors intact human HSE and punctured HSE were compared and no significant difference of the TEWL was found. Permeation experiments with flufenamic acid (FFA) showed a significantly higher diffusion rate through punctured HSE. TEWL and drug permeation were compared for skin stripped three, seven and 15 times prior to heat separation to an intact control group. Only the TEWL values of intact HSE and HSE stripped 15 times differed significantly. However, seven and 15 times stripping resulted in significantly higher diffusion rate. In conclusion, TEWL measurements can detect severe damage of the stratum corneum (SC) but not small changes, which nevertheless may already influence drug diffusion. Therefore, TEWL measurements appears to be of limited use as a barrier integrity test for human HSE in in vitro test systems.
    European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics 06/2006; 63(1):44-50. · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The effect of various vehicles (polyacrylate gels and wool alcohol ointments) on the penetration of flufenamic acid into excised human skin was investigated. Physico-chemical properties of the formulations were examined and discussed. Penetration data was gathered using two different in vitro test systems: the Saarbruecken penetration model (SB-M) and the Franz diffusion cell (FD-C). With wool alcohol ointments, drug concentration in the formulation was the decisive parameter for drug liberation and penetration. The incorporation of water into wool alcohol ointment led to increased drug amounts within the deeper skin layers (DSL), especially after longer incubation times. The drug concentration within the stratum corneum (SC) was not influenced by the bleeding effect of lipophilic, liquid components of the various wool alcohol ointments. With polyacrylate gels different results for liberation and penetration were observed. These results could be related to the effects of the drug concentration within the formulation and the penetration enhancers incorporated into the gels. Especially the effects of penetration enhancers clearly illustrated that liberation experiments do not predict the situation in the skin, but make experiments with a biological barrier essential. The high water content of the gels led to hydration of the skin specimen for the SB-M and the FD-C and therefore, in contrast to previous findings, comparable data were obtained in the penetration studies with both models. Furthermore, the quasi steady-state drug amount in the SC could be calculated for all formulations using an equation derived from a Michaelis-Menten kinetics. The data from both test systems were linearly correlated to each other. In addition, a direct linear relationship between the SC drug amount and the drug amount in the DSL was found as long as the quasi steady-state drug amount in the SC was not reached. A combination of all results might offer the chance to reduce the costs and to simplify the development of a new drug formulation.
    European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics 08/2004; 58(1):121-9. · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The stratum corneum of various donors differs in particular in the composition of the lipoidal phase. Considering the drug amounts penetrating into the stratum corneum a simple methodology to correlate these differences in the stratum corneum composition with the drug amounts detectable within the stratum corneum is desirable. Penetration experiments investigating several incubation times were carried out with three different skin flaps using the Saarbruecken penetration model and the lipophilic model drug flufenamic acid. The drug amounts within the stratum corneum were obtained with the tape-stripping technique, while the drug amounts present in the deeper skin layers were achieved by cryosectioning. The stratum corneum/water-partition coefficient was determined with the same three skin flaps to characterize the lipoidal stratum corneum phase in general, and the differences were attributed to the different amounts of ceramides and sterols. In addition, for the lipophilic drug flufenamic acid, a direct linear correlation was found between the stratum corneum/water-partition coefficients and the drug amounts penetrated into the stratum corneum for all investigated time intervals (correlation coefficients of r(30 min) = 0.998, r(60 min) = 0.998 and r(180 min) = 0.987). In contrast to the stratum corneum/water-partition coefficients, the determination of a corresponding relationship for the stratum corneum and the deeper skin layers failed due to the reason that steady-state conditions could not be achieved for the deeper skin layers during the investigated time intervals. In summary, the stratum corneum/water-partition coefficients offer the possibility to predict drug amounts within the stratum corneum of different donor skin flaps without a time consuming determination of the lipid composition of the stratum corneum.
    Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 09/2002; 91(8):1915-21. · 3.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previously, the interest in in vivo/in vitro correlations in the dermal field of research has increased steadily. Unfortunately, in most cases the skin from different human donors was taken for in vivo and in vitro experiments, which led to problems concerning the interindividual variability of the skin. Therefore, we established a methodology to utilize the same skin for both sets of data. In time dependency, drug amounts in the stratum corneum and the deeper skin layers were determined from eight donors using the same skin area for in vivo and the corresponding in vitro tests. Penetration experiments were carried out with the lipophilic drug flufenamic acid dissolved in wool alcohols ointment as the model formulation, which was administered to the skin under "infinite dose" conditions. At different time points prior to starting the surgery, the drug preparation was applied topically on the edges of the skin area, which was planned for excision using Finn chambers. After anesthetizing the patient and disinfecting the operation area, the incubated skin pieces were cut off first and immediately frozen to limit further drug diffusion. In vitro experiments were performed on the remaining skin flap, using two different test systems, a penetration and a permeation model. At the end of all experiments (in vivo and in vitro) the skin specimens were segmented horizontally and the drug was extracted and quantified. The in vivo and in vitro drug amounts in the stratum corneum and the deeper skin layers, respectively, were compared. The inevitable use of unknown volumes of disinfectant in vivo (medical reasons) might be the reason why a correlation failed for the stratum corneum. Nevertheless, for both in vitro test systems a direct linear correlation was found for the deeper skin layers, which showed slopes of a = 3.2272 +/- 0.3933 (penetration model vs in vivo) and a = 1.7776 +/- 0. 1926 (permeation model vs in vivo). This difference demonstrates the varying influence of the test systems and represents a factor about which in vivo and in vitro data are shifted against each other. As far as the model drug flufenamic acid is concerned, this methodology represents a tool to predict drug penetration into the deeper skin layers in vivo after carrying out corresponding in vitro experiments. Therefore, the potential is given to reduce the number of in vivo experiments, the risk for the volunteers, and the costs for the development of new drug preparations.
    Journal of Investigative Dermatology 04/2002; 118(3):540-4. · 6.37 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

195 Citations
46.34 Total Impact Points


  • 2006–2013
    • Caritas-Krankenhaus Lebach
      Lebach, Saarland, Germany
    • Universität Heidelberg
      • Institute of Pharmacy and Molecular Biotechnology (IPMB)
      Heidelberg, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany
  • 2002–2009
    • Universität des Saarlandes
      Saarbrücken, Saarland, Germany