Formation of a Bile Salt-Drug Hydrogel to Predict Human Intestinal Absorption

Dina S. Shokry, Laura J. Waters, Gareth M.B. Parkes, John C. Mitchell, Martin J. Snowden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The unique character of bile salts to self-assemble into hydrogels in the presence of halide salts was exploited in this work to facilitate the prediction of human intestinal absorption (%HIA) for a set of 25 compounds. This was achieved by firstly incorporating each compound separately within the process of gel formation to create a series of gel-drug membranes. Scanning electron microscopy analysis of the freeze-dried samples of the blank bile salt hydrogels and drug-loaded bile salt hydrogels indicated a unique microstructure made of a network of intertwined fibrils. Drug-loaded sodium deoxycholate hydrogels were then utilized as the donor phase to study permeability using flow-through and static diffusion cells. The resulting values of the release-permeability coefficient (Kp) were then analyzed, along with other molecular descriptors, for the %HIA using multiple linear regression. Overall, when comparing predicted values (using the systems presented in this study) with known literature values, it can be seen that both methods (i.e., using static and flow-through cells) had good predictability with R2 PRED values of 79.8% and 79.7%, respectively. This study therefore proposes a novel, accurate, and precise way to predict HIA for compounds of pharmaceutical interest using a simple in vitro permeation system. It is important to develop alternatives to the current methods used in prediction of HIA, which are expensive and time-consuming or include the use of animals. Therefore, the proposed method in this study being economic and time-saving provides superiority over these current methods and suggests the possibility of its use as an alternate to such methods for prediction of HIA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-287
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Issue number1
Early online date12 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019


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