SUMATRIPTAN – From Molecule to Man
Preclinical Studies on the Anti-Migraine Drug, SumatriptanHumphrey P.P.A. · Feniuk W. · Marriott A.S. · Tanner R.J.N. · Jackson M.R. · Tucker M.L.
Research and Development Divisions, Glaxo Group Research Ltd, Ware UK
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Sumatriptan is believed to constrict selectively the cranial vessels that are distended and inflamed during migraine. The action is mediated by activation of a 5-HT1 receptor subtype which has been shown in animals to be localized in cranial vessels. Further studies to elaborate sumatriptan’s precise clinical mode of action have focused on the human meningeal circulation and should lead to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of migraine. Administering [14C]sumatriptan, drug-related material was shown to be well absorbed. Following absorption there was some first-pass metabolism resulting in oral bioavailabilities of 37, 58 and 23% in rat, dog and rabbit, respectively. In all species, circulating sumatriptan was cleared rapidly by metabolic and renal clearance with a half-life of 1–2 h. The indoleacetic acid metabolite is the primary metabolic product; however, rats, mice and rabbits also N-demethylate the methylaminosulphonylmethyl side-chain. The passage of sumatriptan and its metabolites across the blood-brain barrier appeared to be very limited, although some drug could be detected in the cerebrospinal fluid after administration of high intravenous doses. Safety studies in various animal species showed that sumatriptan produced few adverse pharmacodynamic effects when administered acutely, except at high doses, although it was less well tolerated in dogs. No findings of toxicological significance were observed in rats and dogs after chronic dosing for 1 year or more. The highest doses used in both acute and chronic toxicology studies were limited by behavioural effects but there were no pathological changes. In rats and rabbits sumatriptan had no adverse effects on reproduction and there was no evidence of genotoxicity. Long-term exposure did not induce any treatment-related increase in the incidence of tumours in mice or rats.
© 1991 S. Karger AG, Basel
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