Scientists Find A New Way To Make Oral Medicines Work More Effectively

Posted: Nov 2 2016, 4:50am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

Scientists Find a New Way to Make Oral Medicines Work More Effectively
Credit: University if Minnesota
 

New methodology can make drug structures more soluable in the body. So they can fully absorb and work better

One of the biggest challenges for oral medication manufacturers is to ensure that the medicine should quickly and fully absorb into the body. The sooner a medicine dissolves, the quicker it acts. Moreover, if a medicine does not absorb quickly, it will have more side effects on body.

Now, researchers from University of Minnesota and Dow Chemical Company have discovered a new way for making medicines work faster and more efficiently. The new methodology also allow pharmaceutical companies to cut the cost of medicine production, which inevitably means that patients will have cheaper medicines at their disposal.   

For years, researchers have been trying to improve the solubility of the oral drugs but so far with very little success. Once ingested, medicines enter into the bloodstream and make their way into the body’s tissues. However, most drugs failed to distribute fully and evenly in the body until recent discovery.

“A way to explain the differences in solubility of medicines is to think of how sugar easily dissolves in water and is rapidly absorbed by your digestive system, whereas sand doesn’t dissolve in water and if swallowed would pass right through the digestive system.” Theresa Reineke, a chemistry professor in the University of Minnesota's College of Science and Engineering and lead researcher of the study explains.

In the latest study, researchers synthesize long chain molecules of two medicines by using automated equipment installed at Dow. The medicines phenytoin and nilutamide are used to treat suizer and advanced-stage of prostate cancer respectively. The absorption of both the drugs when taken through mouth is slow. But the new therapeutic structure made them easily dissolve on the molecular level. When their efficiency was tested on rat models, researchers found that it promoted drug absorption three times better than the previous formulation. The discovery in the study could have huge impact on human health as well as low cost of the medicines.

“It takes about $1 billion dollars and 10 to 15 years for a pharmaceutical company to develop a new drug, but then they sometimes find marketable formulations are limited by solubility,” said co-author Steven Guillaudeu. 

“The methodology our team has created could help drug companies advance their pipeline compounds by using a better method to improve solubility and therefore bioavailability. This approach could have a major impact on the multibillion-dollar industry.”

 

 

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.

 

 

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