Integrated pharmacokinetic-driven approach to screen candidate anticancer drugs for brain tumor chemotherapy

Hua Lv, Xiaoping Zhang, Jyoti Sharma, M. V.Ramana Reddy, E. Premkumar Reddy, James M. Gallo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The goal of the study was to develop an effective screening strategy to select new agents for brain tumor chemotherapy from a series of low molecular weight anticancer agents [ON123x] by the combined use of in silico, in vitro cytotoxicity, and in vitro ADME profiling studies. The results of these studies were cast into a pipeline of tier 1 and tier 2 procedures that resulted in the identification of ON123300 as the lead compound. Of the 154 ON123xx compounds, 13 met tier 1 screening criteria based on physicochemical properties [i.e., MW < 450 Da, predicted log P between 2 and 3.5] and in vitro glioma cell cytotoxicity [i.e., IC50 < 10 μM] and were further tested in tier 2 assays. The tier 2 profiling studies consisted of metabolic stability, MDCK-MDR1 cell permeability and plasma and brain protein binding that were combined to globally assess whether favorable pharmacokinetic properties and brain penetration could be achieved in vivo. In vivo cassette dosing studies were conducted in mice for 12 compounds that permitted examination of in vitro/in vivo relationships that confirmed the suitability of the in vitro assays. A parameter derived from the in vitro assays accurately predicted the extent of drug accumulation in the brain based on the area under the drug concentration-time curve in brain measured in the cassette dosing study (r 2 = 0.920). Overall, the current studies demonstrated the value of an integrated pharmacokinetic-driven approach to identify potentially efficacious agents for brain tumor chemotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)250-257
Number of pages8
JournalAAPS Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013


  • CNS
  • brain tumor
  • drug development
  • pharmacokinetics
  • preclinical


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