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OATP2B1 is an intestinal and hepatic drug uptake transporter. Intestinal OATP2B1 has been elucidated as the mechanism of unexpected clinical drug-drug interactions (DDIs), where drug exposure was unexpectedly decreased with unchanged half-life. Hepatic OATP2B1 may be an understudied clinical DDI mechanism. The aim of the present work was to understand the prevalence of clinically relevant intestinal and hepatic OATP2B1 inhibitors in marketed drug space. HEK293 cells stably overexpressing human OATP2B1 or vector control were generated and cultured for 72 h in a 96-well format. OATP2B1-mediated uptake of dibromofluorescein (DBF) was found to be optimal at 10 μM concentration and 30 min incubation time. A total of 294 drugs (top 300 marketed drugs, excluding biologics and restricted drugs, supplemented with ∼100 small-molecule drugs) were screened for OATP2B1 inhibition at 10 μM. Drugs demonstrating ≥50% inhibition in this screen were advanced for IC50 determination, which was extrapolated to clinical intestinal and hepatic OATP2B1 inhibition as per 2017 FDA DDI guidance. Of the 294 drugs screened, 67 elicited ≥50% inhibition of OATP2B1-mediated DBF uptake at 10 μM screening concentration. For the 67 drugs flagged in the single-concentration inhibition screen, upon evaluation of a full concentration range, IC50 values could be determined for 58 drugs. OATP2B1 IC50 values established for these 58 drugs were extrapolated as potentially clinically relevant at the intestinal level for 38 orally administered drugs (Igut/IC50 ≥ 10), and 17 were flagged as potential clinical inhibitors of hepatic OATP2B1 uptake (1 + Iin,max,u/IC50 ≥ 1.1). This analysis of 294 drugs demonstrated prevalence of clinically relevant intestinal and hepatic OATP2B1 inhibitors to be 13 and 6%, respectively. As OATP2B1-inhibitor drugs are not exceedingly rare, these results suggest that clinical OATP2B1 DDIs have been rarely observed because OATP2B1 is uncommonly the predominant determinant of drug disposition.


Melissa S Unger, Jennypher Mudunuru, Matthias Schwab, Carsten Hopf, Gerard Drewes, Anne T Nies, Maciej J Zamek-Gliszczynski, Friedrich B M Reinhard. Clinically Relevant OATP2B1 Inhibitors in Marketed Drug Space. Molecular pharmaceutics. 2020 Feb 03;17(2):488-498

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PMID: 31834804

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