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Langmuir. 2016 Dec 6;32(48):12732-12740. Epub 2016 Nov 28.

Partitioning into Colloidal Structures of Fasted State Intestinal Fluid Studied by Molecular Dynamics Simulations.

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Department of Pharmacy, Uppsala University, Uppsala Biomedical Centre , P.O. Box 580, SE-751 23 Uppsala, Sweden.
Department of Chemistry, Umeå University , Umeå, Sweden.
Chemical Theory & Computation, Department of Chemistry, University of Lancaster , Lancaster LA1 4YB, U.K.


We performed molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to obtain insights into the structure and molecular interactions of colloidal structures present in fasted state intestinal fluid. Drug partitioning and interaction were studied with a mixed system of the bile salt taurocholate (TCH) and 1,2-dilinoleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DLiPC). Spontaneous aggregation of TCH and DLiPC from unconstrained MD simulations at the united-atom level using the Berger/Gromos54A7 force fields demonstrated that intermolecular hydrogen bonding between TCH molecules was an important factor in determining the overall TCH and DLiPC configuration. In bilayered systems, these intermolecular hydrogen bonds resulted in embedded transmembrane TCH clusters. Free energy simulations using the umbrella sampling technique revealed that the stability of these transmembrane TCH clusters was superior when they consisted of 3 or 4 TCH per bilayer leaflet. All-atom simulations using the Slipids/GAFF force fields showed that the TCH embedded in the bilayer decreased the energy barrier to penetrate the bilayer (ΔGpen) for water, ethanol, and carbamazepine, but not for the more lipophilic felodipine and danazol. This suggests that diffusion of hydrophilic to moderately lipophilic molecules through the bilayer is facilitated by the embedded TCH molecules. However, the effect of embedded TCH on the overall lipid/water partitioning was significant for danazol, indicating that the incorporation of TCH plays a crucial role for the partitioning of lipophilic solutes into e.g. lipidic vesicles existing in fasted state intestinal fluids. To conclude, the MD simulations revealed important intermolecular interactions in lipidic bilayers, both between the bile components themselves and with the drug molecules.

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