Send to

Choose Destination
J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2002 Nov;303(2):760-7.

Pluronic p85 block copolymer enhances opioid peptide analgesia.

Author information

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85724, USA.


Peptide-based drug development is a rapidly growing field within pharmaceutical research. Nevertheless, peptides have found limited clinical use due to several physiological and pathological factors. Pluronic block copolymers represent a growing technology with the potential to enhance efficacy of peptide therapeutics. This investigation assesses Pluronic P85 (P85) and its potential to enhance opioid peptide analgesia. Two opioid peptides, [D-Pen(2),D-Pen(5)]-enkephalin (DPDPE) and biphalin, were examined as to the benefits of P85 coadministration, above (1.0%) and below (0.01%) the critical micelle concentration, with morphine as a nonpeptide control. P85 was examined in vitro to assess blood-brain barrier uptake in association with P-glycoprotein effect, DPDPE and morphine being P-glycoprotein substrates. P85 coadministration with DPDPE and biphalin showed increased (p < 0.01) analgesia with both 0.01 and 1.0% P85. Morphine showed increased (p < 0.01) analgesia with 0.01% P85 only. This increase in analgesia is due to both an increase in peak effect, as well as a prolongation of effect. P85 increased cellular uptake of (125)I-DPDPE and [(3)H]morphine at 0.01% (p < 0.01) and 1.0% (p < 0.01 and p < 0.05, respectively). Cyclosporin-A coadministration with (125)I-DPDPE and [(3)H]morphine increased cellular uptake (p < 0.01 and p < 0.05, respectively). (125)I-DPDPE and [(3)H]morphine coadministered with 0.01% P85 and cyclosporin-A increased cellular uptake compared with control (p < 0.01) and compared with cyclosporin-A coadministration without P85 (p < 0.01 and p < 0.05, respectively). This indicates that, in addition to P-gp inhibition, 0.01% P85 increased (125)I-DPDPE and [(3)H]morphine uptake. In our examination, we determined that P85 enhanced the analgesic profile of biphalin, DPDPE, and morphine, both above and below the critical micelle concentration.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center