Intestinal Absorption Mechanism of Mirabegron, a Potent and Selective β3-Adrenoceptor Agonist: Involvement of Human Efflux and/or Influx Transport Systems
Takusagawa S, Ushigome F, Nemoto H, Takahashi Y, Li Q, Kerbusch V, Miyashita A, Iwatsubo T, Usui T. Mol Pharm. 2013 Apr 5. [Epub ahead of print]


Mirabegron, a weakly basic compound, is a potent and selective β3-adrenoceptor agonist for the treatment of overactive bladder. This study evaluated the membrane permeability of mirabegron and investigated the involvement of human intestinal transport proteins in the membrane permeation of mirabegron. Transcellular transport and cellular/vesicular uptake assays were performed using Caco-2 cells and/or human intestinal efflux (P-glycoprotein [P-gp], breast cancer resistance protein [BCRP], and multidrug resistance associated protein 2 [MRP2]) and influx (peptide transporter 1 [PEPT1], OATP1A2, and OATP2B1) transporters-expressing cells, vesicles, or Xenopus laevis oocytes. The absorptive permeability coefficients of mirabegron in Caco-2 cells (1.68-1.83 × 10-6 cm/sec) at the apical and basal pH of 6.5 and 7.4, respectively, were slightly higher than those of nadolol (0.97-1.41 × 10-6 cm/sec), a low permeability reference standard, but lower than those of metoprolol and propranolol (both ranged from 8.49 to 11.6 × 10-6 cm/sec), high permeability reference standards. Increasing buffer pH at the apical side from 5.5 to 8.0 gradually increased the absorptive permeation of mirabegron from 0.226 to 1.66 × 10-6 cm/sec, but was still less than the value in the opposite direction (11.0-14.2 × 10-6 cm/sec). The time- and concentration-dependent transport of mirabegron was observed in P-gp-expressing cells and OATP1A2-expressing oocytes with apparent Km values of 294 and 8.59 µM, respectively. In contrast, no clear BCRP-, MRP2-, PEPT1-, or OATP2B1-mediated uptake of mirabegron was observed in their expressing vesicles or cells. These findings suggest that mirabegron has low-to-moderate membrane permeability and intestinal efflux and/or influx transporters are likely to be involved in its absorption as well as simple diffusion.