European journal of pharmaceutical sciences : official journal of the European Federation for Pharmaceutical Sciences

Nonlinear pharmacokinetics of visnagin in rats after intravenous bolus administration.

PMID 22085634


Ammi visnaga L. (syn. Khella, Apiaceae) preparations have traditionally been used in the Middle East for the treatment of kidney stone disease. Visnagin, a furanocoumarin derivative, is one of the main compounds of Ammi visnaga with potential effects on kidney stone prevention. To date, no information is available about the pharmacokinetic (PK) properties of visnagin. It was the aim of the study to characterize the PK properties of visnagin after intravenous (i.v.) bolus administration in rats and to develop an adequate model for the description of the observed data, including model parameter estimates. Therefore, three doses of visnagin (1.25, 2.5, and 5mg/kg) solubilized in 25% Captisol® were administered by i.v. bolus injection to male Sprague-Dawley rats. Plasma samples were extracted and subsequently analyzed using a validated LC-MS/MS method. Both non-compartmental and compartmental PK analyses were performed. A stepwise model building approach was applied including nonlinear mixed effect modeling for final model selection and to obtain final model estimates in NONMEM VI. The average areas under the curve (AUC(0-last)) after doses of 1.25, 2.5, and 5mg/kg were 1.03, 3.61, and 12.6 mg *h/l, respectively. The shape of the plasma concentration-time profiles and the observed disproportionate increase in AUC(0-last) with increasing dose suggested nonlinearity in the elimination of visnagin. A two-compartment Michaelis-Menten model provided the best fit with following typical values of the parameter estimates: 2.09 mg/(l*h) (V(max)), 0.08 mg/l (K(M)), 0.175 l (V(C)), 1.0 h⁻¹ (k₁₂), and 1.22 h⁻¹ (k₂₁). Associated inter-subject variability estimates (% CV) for V(max), K(M) and V(C) were 21.8, 70.9, and 9.2, respectively. Intra-subject variability (constant CV error model) was estimated to be 7.0%. The results suggest the involvement of a saturable process in the elimination of visnagin, possibly an enzyme or transporter system.

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