Penetration of Anti-Infective Agents into Pulmonary Epithelial Lining Fluid

University of Illinois at Chicago, USA.
Clinical Pharmacokinetics (Impact Factor: 5.05). 10/2011; 50(10):637-64. DOI: 10.2165/11594090-000000000-00000
Source: PubMed


The exposure-response relationship of anti-infective agents at the site of infection is currently being re-examined. Epithelial lining fluid (ELF) has been suggested as the site (compartment) of antimicrobial activity against lung infections caused by extracellular pathogens. There have been an extensive number of studies conducted during the past 20 years to determine drug penetration into ELF and to compare plasma and ELF concentrations of anti-infective agents. The majority of these studies estimated ELF drug concentrations by the method of urea dilution and involved either healthy adult subjects or patients undergoing diagnostic bronchoscopy. Antibacterial agents such as macrolides, ketolides, newer fluoroquinolones and oxazolidinones have ELF to plasma concentration ratios of >1. In comparison, β-lactams, aminoglycosides and glycopeptides have ELF to plasma concentration ratios of ≤1. Potential explanations (e.g. drug transporters, overestimation of the ELF volume, lysis of cells) for why these differences in ELF penetration occur among antibacterial classes need further investigation. The relationship between ELF concentrations and clinical outcomes has been under-studied. In vitro pharmacodynamic models, using simulated ELF and plasma concentrations, have been used to examine the eradication rates of resistant and susceptible pathogens and to explain why selected anti-infective agents (e.g. those with ELF to plasma concentration ratios of >1) are less likely to be associated with clinical treatment failures. Population pharmacokinetic modelling and Monte Carlo simulations have recently been used and permit ELF and plasma concentrations to be evaluated with regard to achievement of target attainment rates. These mathematical modelling techniques have also allowed further examination of drug doses and differences in the time courses of ELF and plasma concentrations as potential explanations for clinical and microbiological effects seen in clinical trials. Further studies are warranted in patients with lower respiratory tract infections to confirm and explore the relationships between ELF concentrations, clinical and microbiological outcomes, and pharmacodynamic parameters.

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    • "a widely used technique for collecting the ELF to determine sufficient drug concentrations achieved at the infected site. This technique has been commonly applied to antibacterial agents (Rodvold et al., 2011a) and is also recently applicable to other anti-infective agents, such as antifungal, antitubercular, antiparasitic, and antiviral agents (Rodvold et al., 2011b). In the case of LO as well, it is likely that the ELF is a relevant site to determine drug concentrations from the standpoint of pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic relationship, considering viral surface location of the neuraminidase enzyme. "
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    ABSTRACT: Epithelial lining fluid (ELF) is often considered to be the site of extracellular pulmonary infections. During the past 25 years, a limited number of studies have evaluated the intrapulmonary penetration of antifungal, antitubercular, antiparasitic and antiviral agents. For antifungal agents, differences in drug concentrations in ELF or bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid were observed among various formulations or routes of administration, and between agents within the same class. Aerosolized doses of deoxycholate amphotericin B, liposomal amphotericin B and amphotericin B lipid complex resulted in higher concentrations in ELF or BAL fluid than after intravenous administration. The mean concentrations in ELF following intravenous administration of both anidulafungin and micafungin ranged between 0.04 and 1.38 μg/mL, and the ELF to plasma concentration ratios (based on the area under the concentration-time curve for total drug concentrations) were between 0.18 and 0.22 during the first 3 days of therapy. Among the azole agents, intravenous administration of voriconazole resulted in the highest mean ELF concentrations (range 10.1-48.3 μg/mL) and ratio of penetration (7.1). The range of mean ELF concentrations of itraconazole and posaconazole following oral administration was 0.2-1.9 μg/mL, and the ELF to plasma concentration ratios were <1. A series of studies have evaluated the intrapulmonary penetration of first- and second-line oral antitubercular agents in healthy adult subjects and patients with AIDS. The ELF to plasma concentration ratio was >1 for isoniazid, ethambutol, pyrazinamide and ethionamide. For rifampicin (rifampin) and rifapentine, the ELF to plasma concentration ratio ranged between 0.2 and 0.32, but in alveolar macrophages the concentration of rifampicin was much higher (145-738 μg/mL compared with 3.3-7.5 μg/mL in ELF). No intrapulmonary studies have been conducted for rifabutin. Sex, AIDS status or smoking history had no significant effects on the magnitude of ELF concentrations of antitubercular agents. Subjects who were slow acetylators had higher plasma and ELF concentrations of isoniazid than those who were fast acetylators. Penetration of dapsone into ELF was very good, with the range of mean ELF to plasma concentration ratios being 0.65-2.91 at individual sampling times over 48 hours. Once-daily dosing of aerosolized pentamidine resulted in higher concentrations in BAL fluid than after intravenous administration. The mean BAL concentrations at 15-32 days after once- or twice-monthly administration of aerosolized pentamidine 300 and 600 mg ranged from 6.5 to 28.4 ng/mL. No differences in pentamidine BAL concentrations were observed in symptomatic patients who developed Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia compared with patients who did not. Zanamivir concentrations in ELF were similar in magnitude (range 141-326 ng/mL) following administration by continuous intravenous infusion (3 mg/hour), oral inhalation (10 mg every 12 hours) and intravenous bolus (200 mg every 12 hours). Data from case reports have suggested that concentrations of nelfinavir and saquinavir in ELF are undetectable, whereas tipranavir and lopinavir had measureable ELF concentrations (2.20 μmol/L and 14.4 μg/mL, respectively) when these protease inhibitors were co-administrated with ritonavir. While the clinical significance of ELF or BAL concentrations remains unknown for this group of anti-infective agents, the knowledge of drug penetration into the extracellular space of the lung should assist in re-evaluating and designing specific dosing regimens for use against potential pathogens.
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