Publications by authors named "Ann Lévesque"

21 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Importance of measuring testosterone in enzyme-inhibited plasma for oral testosterone undecanoate androgen replacement therapy clinical trials.

Future Sci OA 2015 Nov 1;1(4):FSO55. Epub 2015 Nov 1.

inVentiv Health clinical, Québec, Canada; inVentiv Health clinical, Québec, Canada.

Aim: Testosterone undecanoate (TU) is metabolized by nonspecific esterases in blood to testosterone (T). Typical clinical practice has been to analyze testosterone in human serum. The degradation of TU to testosterone was evaluated in conditions typically used in clinical studies.

Methods & Results: Freshly collected whole blood was fortified with TU at known concentration. Serum was prepared and T concentration was determined by LC-MS/MS. It was observed that TU degrades extensively to T in human blood under conditions typical of harvesting serum causing overestimation of T concentration of up to 243%. These results were confirmed in a clinical study in which serum and plasma samples were compared.

Conclusion: It was demonstrated that T must be analyzed in enzyme-inhibited plasma when TU is the administered medication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/fso.15.55DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5137954PMC
November 2015

Comparison of blood microsampling with DBS and conventional blood collection techniques used in a midazolam biostudy.

Bioanalysis 2016 Apr 23;8(8):741-51. Epub 2016 Mar 23.

Former Senior Director at inVentiv Health Clinical, 2500 Einstein, Quebec, QC G1P 0A2, Canada.

Background: Quantitative DBS LC-MS/MS assay for midazolam was used to compare two sample collection techniques (venipuncture and finger prick) and the midazolam concentrations measured in plasma samples, DBS and dried plasma spots.

Methodology: Midazolam was extracted from DBS cards and compared with whole blood collected from usual venipuncture. Dried plasma spots were also compared with plasma. The blood volume used as well as the temperature impact during the blood and plasma deposits was evaluated. Midazolam was administrated to six healthy subjects during a clinical trial to obtained blood and plasma samples for the statistical comparison.

Conclusion: The method for midazolam using DBS was validated and showed an excellent performance. Excellent correlations were observed when the same collection procedures were used.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio-2015-0031DOI Listing
April 2016

9th GCC closed forum: CAPA in regulated bioanalysis; method robustness, biosimilars, preclinical method validation, endogenous biomarkers, whole blood stability, regulatory audit experiences and electronic laboratory notebooks.

Bioanalysis 2016 Mar 26;8(6):487-95. Epub 2016 Feb 26.

WuXi/XBL, 107 Morgan Lane, Plainsboro, NJ, USA.

The 9th GCCClosed Forum was held just prior to the 2015 Workshop on Recent Issues in Bioanalysis (WRIB) in Miami, FL, USA on 13 April 2015. In attendance were 58 senior-level participants, from eight countries, representing 38 CRO companies offering bioanalytical services. The objective of this meeting was for CRO bioanalytical representatives to meet and discuss scientific and regulatory issues specific to bioanalysis. The issues selected at this year's closed forum include CAPA, biosimilars, preclinical method validation, endogenous biomarkers, whole blood stability, and ELNs. A summary of the industry's best practices and the conclusions from the discussion of these topics is included in this meeting report.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.16.16DOI Listing
March 2016

From low- to high-throughput analysis.

Bioanalysis 2016 10;8(2):135-41. Epub 2015 Dec 10.

inVentiv Health Clinical, Québec, Canada.

The high throughput is routinely used for the first steps of drug development such as drug discovery screening and toxicity. However, for PK analysis of regulated studies, the requirements and difficulties to achieve high-throughput analysis are more demanding due to regulatory guidelines that are not needed for early steps of drug discovery. High-throughput analysis can be required for any drug type from small molecules to larger ones. Contract research organizations must be prepared to deliver the results associated to these studies in a fast turnaround. Herein, we will describe the challenges encountered by a laboratory in order to go from low- to high-throughput analysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.15.211DOI Listing
September 2016

2015 White Paper on recent issues in bioanalysis: focus on new technologies and biomarkers (Part 2 - hybrid LBA/LCMS and input from regulatory agencies).

Bioanalysis 2015 Dec 2;7(23):3019-34. Epub 2015 Dec 2.

Germany BfArM, Bonn, Germany.

The 2015 9th Workshop on Recent Issues in Bioanalysis (9th WRIB) took place in Miami, Florida with participation of over 600 professionals from pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, contract research organizations and regulatory agencies worldwide. It is once again a 5-day week long event - a full immersion bioanalytical week - specifically designed to facilitate sharing, reviewing, discussing and agreeing on approaches to address the most current issues of interest in bioanalysis. The topics covered included both small and large molecules, and involved LCMS, hybrid LBA/LCMS, LBA approaches including the focus on biomarkers and immunogenicity. This 2015 White Paper encompasses recommendations that emerged from the extensive discussions held during the workshop, and is aimed at providing the bioanalytical community with key information and practical solutions on topics and issues addressed, in an effort to advance scientific excellence, improve quality and deliver better regulatory compliance. Due to its length, the 2015 edition of this comprehensive White Paper has been divided into three parts. Part 2 covers the recommendations for hybrid LBA/LCMS and regulatory agencies' inputs. Part 1 (small molecule bioanalysis using LCMS) and Part 3 (large molecule bioanalysis using LBA, biomarkers and immunogenicity) will be published in volume 7 of Bioanalysis, issues 22 and 24, respectively.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.15.214DOI Listing
December 2015

Justifying the lack of incurred sample reproducibility in a study: considerations and strategies.

Bioanalysis 2015 ;7(2):221-7

inVentiv Health Clinical, Québec, Canada.

In 2012 with the issuance of its Guideline on Bioanalytical Method Validation, the European Medicine Agency (EMA) made the incurred sample reproducibility (ISR) assessment a requirement for studies to be submitted to European authorities. Since then 2012, European agencies have started to issue deficiencies to pharmaceutical companies for lack of ISRs in studies submitted recently but performed prior to the issuance of the 2012 Guideline. It now becomes the applicant's responsibility to justify scientifically the departure from the new guideline even for less recent studies. This article details the different strategies to provide an adequate justification for the absence of ISR data in studies performed prior to February 2012 but submitted to European agencies after that date.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.258DOI Listing
September 2015

The free fractions of circulating docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentenoic acid as optimal end-point of measure in bioavailability studies on n-3 fatty acids.

Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 2015 May 20;96:11-6. Epub 2014 Dec 20.

Institute of Pharmacology, Catholic University Medical School, L.go F. Vito 1, 00168 Rome, Italy. Electronic address:

The high complexity of n-3 fatty acids absorption process, along with the huge amount of endogenous fraction, makes bioavailability studies with these agents very challenging and deserving special consideration. In this paper we report the results of a bioequivalence study between a new formulation of EPA+DHA ethyl esters developed by IBSA Institut Biochimique and reference medicinal product present on the Italian market. Bioequivalence was demonstrated according to the criteria established by the EMA Guideline on the Investigation of Bioequivalence. We found that the free fractions represent a better and more sensitive end-point for bioequivalence investigations on n-3 fatty acids, since: (i) the overall and intra-subject variability of PK parameters was markedly lower compared to the same variability calculated on the total DHA and EPA fractions; (ii) the absorption process was completed within 4h, and the whole PK profile could be drawn within 12-15 h from drug administration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plefa.2014.12.006DOI Listing
May 2015

2014 White Paper on recent issues in bioanalysis: a full immersion in bioanalysis (Part 3 - LBA and immunogenicity).

Bioanalysis 2014 ;6(24):3355-68

Biogen Idec Inc., Cambridge, MA, USA.

The 2014 8th Workshop on Recent Issues in Bioanalysis (8th WRIB), a 5-day full immersion in the evolving field of bioanalysis, took place in Universal City, California, USA. Close to 500 professionals from pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, contract research organizations and regulatory agencies worldwide convened to share, review, discuss and agree on approaches to address current issues of interest in bioanalysis. The topics covered included both small and large molecules, and involved LCMS, hybrid LBA/LCMS, LBA approaches and immunogenicity. From the prolific discussions held during the workshop, specific recommendations are presented in this 2014 White Paper. As with the previous years' editions, this paper acts as a practical tool to help the bioanalytical community continue advances in scientific excellence, improved quality and better regulatory compliance. Due to its length, the 2014 edition of this comprehensive White Paper has been divided into three parts for editorial reasons. This publication (Part 3) covers the recommendations for Large molecules bioanalysis using LBA and Immunogenicity. Part 1 (Small molecules bioanalysis using LCMS) and Part 2 (Hybrid LBA/LCMS, Electronic Laboratory Notebook and Regulatory Agencies' Input) were published in the Bioanalysis issues 6(22) and 6(23), respectively.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.283DOI Listing
August 2015

2014 White Paper on recent issues in bioanalysis: a full immersion in bioanalysis (Part 2 - hybrid LBA/LCMS, ELN & regulatory agencies' input).

Bioanalysis 2014 ;6(23):3237-49

Pfizer, Andover, MA, USA.

The 2014 8th Workshop on Recent Issues in Bioanalysis (8th WRIB), a 5-day full immersion in the evolving field of bioanalysis, took place in Universal City, California, USA. Close to 500 professionals from pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, contract research organizations and regulatory agencies worldwide convened to share, review, discuss and agree on approaches to address current issues of interest in bioanalysis. The topics covered included both small and large molecules, and involved LCMS, hybrid LBA/LCMS, LBA approaches and immunogenicity. From the prolific discussions held during the workshop, specific recommendations are presented in this 2014 White Paper. As with the previous years' editions, this paper acts as a practical tool to help the bioanalytical community continue advances in scientific excellence, improved quality and better regulatory compliance. Due to its length, the 2014 edition of this comprehensive White Paper has been divided into three parts for editorial reasons. This publication (Part 2) covers the recommendations for Hybrid LBA/LCMS, Electronic Laboratory Notebook and Regulatory Agencies' Input. Part 1 (Small molecules bioanalysis using LCMS) was published in the Bioanalysis issue 6(22) and Part 3 (Large molecules bioanalysis using LBA and Immunogenicity) will be published in the Bioanalysis issue 6(24).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.279DOI Listing
August 2015

The importance of choosing the appropriate matrix to validate a bioanalytical method according to the study needs.

Bioanalysis 2014 ;6(23):3101-11

inVentiv Health Clinical, Quebec, Canada.

Sylvain Lachance is a Bioanalytical Scientific Expert in the Bioanalytical Division of inVentiv Health Clinical Quebec City's (Canada) site, a CRO offering clinical, commercial and consulting services to the healthcare industry. He is responsible for following up on the conduct of bioanalytical method development activities by enhancing the scientific and technical knowledge of the researchers, bioanalytical project coordinators and of the laboratory technicians. He assists bioanalytical project coordinators in investigations during bioanalyses and method validations. He has been working in the Bioanalytical Division of inVentiv Health Clinical for over 16 years, working as a Research Scientist, Chromatographic Specialist and Scientific Expert. He has worked on multiple method developments in HPLC and LC-MS/MS, specifically on troubleshooting. He has been involved in more than 70 posters and publications in the bioanalytical field for different scientific meetings. Ann Lévesque obtained her PhD in Biochemistry at the Université Laval in Québec City in 1994 studying the biological actions of peptide analogs of the gastrin releasing peptide in the growth inhibition of cancer cells. Prior to joining inVentiv Health Clinical, she held management positions at other Contract Research Organizations. Her publications include over 100 posters, 17 scientific articles and book chapters in the clinical biochemistry and bioanalytical fields. Within inVentiv Health, Dr. Lévesque is responsible for managing the R&D and sample analysis teams performing bioanalytical analysis of small molecules and peptides. She is also acting as the Biomedical Laboratory Director accountable for the oversight of all activities related to the safety testing of samples from subjects enrolled in early stage clinical trials. Since joining the Bioanalytical Division, Dr. Lévesque has been instrumental in the great success of the laboratory by developing a culture of quality, innovation and value. Validation guidelines from different agencies mainly recommend that matrix effect should be studied with hemolyzed and hyperlipidemic samples, while the European agency requires also to investigate matrix effect on special population. When studies are done in countries with different dietary habits, or when a medication is administered to decrease the concentration of the endogenous compounds, should the matrix effect in these conditions be evaluated? Herein, three case studies are described to show the importance of choosing the appropriate matrix for the bioanalytical method validations and for their use to analyze the study samples according to the conditions required by the clinical trials. The case studies presented are related to the use of the testosterone, Omega-3 and cortisol methods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.266DOI Listing
August 2015

2014 White Paper on recent issues in bioanalysis: a full immersion in bioanalysis (Part 1--small molecules by LCMS).

Bioanalysis 2014 ;6(22):3039-49

Pfizer, Pearl River, NY, USA.

The 2014 8th Workshop on Recent Issues in Bioanalysis (8th WRIB), a 5-day full immersion in the evolving field of bioanalysis, took place in Universal City, California, USA. Close to 500 professionals from pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, contract research organizations and regulatory agencies worldwide convened to share, review, discuss and agree on approaches to address current issues of interest in bioanalysis. The topics covered included both small and large molecules, and involved LCMS, hybrid LBA/LCMS, LBA approaches and immunogenicity. From the prolific discussions held during the workshop, specific recommendations are presented in this 2014 White Paper. As with the previous years' editions, this paper acts as a practical tool to help the bioanalytical community continue advances in scientific excellence, improved quality and better regulatory compliance. Due to its length, the 2014 edition of this comprehensive White Paper has been divided into three parts for editorial reasons. This publication (Part 1) covers the recommendations for small molecule bioanalysis using LCMS. Part 2 (Hybrid LBA/LCMS, Electronic Laboratory Notebook and Regulatory Agencies' input) and Part 3 (Large molecules bioanalysis using LBA and Immunogenicity) will be published in the upcoming issues of Bioanalysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.265DOI Listing
July 2015

8th GCC: consolidated feedback to US FDA on the 2013 draft FDA guidance on bioanalytical method validation.

Bioanalysis 2014 ;6(22):2957-63

Covance Laboratories, Chantilly, VA, USA.

The 8th GCC Closed Forum for Bioanalysis was held in Baltimore, MD, USA on 5 December 2013, immediately following the 2013 AAPS Workshop (Crystal City V): Quantitative Bioanalytical Methods Validation and Implementation--The 2013 Revised FDA Guidance. This GCC meeting was organized to discuss the contents of the draft revised FDA Guidance on bioanalytical method validation that was published in September 2013 and consolidate the feedback of the GCC members. In attendance were 63 senior-level participants, from seven countries, representing 46 bioanalytical CRO companies/sites. This event represented a unique opportunity for CRO bioanalytical experts to share their opinions and concerns regarding the draft FDA Guidance, and to build unified comments to be provided to the FDA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.14.287DOI Listing
July 2015

Comparative bioavailability of two oral formulations of clopidogrel: determination of clopidogrel and its carboxylic acid metabolite (SR26334) under fasting and fed conditions in healthy subjects.

Acta Pharm 2014 Mar;64(1):45-62

Two randomized, single dose, 2-period, 2-sequence crossover studies were conducted to evaluate the comparative bioavailability of two clopidogrel formulations under fasting and fed conditions. Assessment of bioequivalence was based upon measurement of plasma concentrations of the parent drug, clopidogrel, and its major (inactive) metabolite, clopidogrel carboxylic acid, using improved methanol-free extraction. Bioequivalence of Krka's formulation to the innovator's formulation was demonstrated under both fasting and fed conditions on 205 volunteers. Confidence intervals for AUC0-t, AUC0-inf and Cmax of clopidogrel and its main metabolite were well within the acceptance range of 80.00 to 125.00 %. Food substantially increased the bioavailability of clopidogrel from both formulations, while no effect of food on the extent and rate of exposure to the metabolite was observed. The effect of food was comparable between the two formulations, as indicated by the same direction and rank of food impact on the bioavailability of both formulations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2478/acph-2014-0001DOI Listing
March 2014

Recommendations on bioanalytical method stability implications of co-administered and co-formulated drugs by Global CRO Council for Bioanalysis (GCC).

Bioanalysis 2012 Sep;4(17):2117-26

Advion Bioanalytical Laboratories, Quintiles, NY, USA.

An open letter written by the Global CRO Council for Bioanalysis (GCC) describing the GCC survey results on stability data from co-administered and co-formulated drugs was sent to multiple regulatory authorities on 14 December 2011. This letter and further discussions at different GCC meetings led to subsequent recommendations on this topic of widespread interest within the bioanalytical community over the past 2 years.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.12.192DOI Listing
September 2012

Impact of hemolysis during sample collection: how different is drug concentration in hemolyzed plasma from that of normal plasma?

J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci 2012 Jul 12;901:79-84. Epub 2012 Jun 12.

PharmaNet Canada Inc., Québec, Canada.

Hemolysis is a common phenomenon in clinical studies. Despite the growing interest in hemolysis matrix effect, how hemolysis impacts the representability of hemolyzed plasma samples was rarely evaluated. The purpose of this research is to perform such an evaluation by theoretical consideration and experiment. A formula for estimating the impact is proposed, which includes the degree of hemolysis and the drug's red blood cell (RBC): plasma concentration ratio. The impact of hemolysis on the representability of hemolyzed plasma samples is compound-dependant. Given the same degree of hemolysis, the stronger a drug binds to RBCs, the more significant the impact of hemolysis. For a drug with high affinity to RBCs, the results of hemolyzed plasma samples may not be useful even though they are accurate. There is an overall agreement between theoretical predication and experimental results. Among the ten different drug compounds tested, only methazolamide, which binds strongly to RBCs, showed significant change in plasma concentration due to hemolysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jchromb.2012.06.002DOI Listing
July 2012

4th Global CRO Council for Bioanalysis: coadministered drugs stability, EMA/US FDA guidelines, 483s and carryover.

Bioanalysis 2012 Apr;4(7):763-8

The Global CRO Council for Bioanalysis (GCC) was formed in September 2010. Since then, the representatives of the member companies come together periodically to openly discuss bioanalysis and the regulatory challenges unique to the outsourcing industry. The 4th GCC Closed Forum brought together experts from bioanalytical CROs to share and discuss recent issues in regulated bioanalysis, such as the impact of coadministered drugs on stability, some differences between European Medicines Agency and US FDA bioanalytical guidance documents and lessons learned following recent Untitled Letters. Recent 483s and agency findings, as well as issues on method carryover, were also part of the topics discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.12.48DOI Listing
April 2012

Analyte and internal standard cross signal contributions and their impact on quantitation in LC-MS based bioanalysis.

J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci 2011 Jul 27;879(21):1954-60. Epub 2011 May 27.

PharmaNet Canada, Québec, QC, Canada.

Cross signal contributions between an analyte and its internal standard (IS) are very common due to impurities in reference standards and/or isotopic interferences. Despite the general awareness of this issue, how exactly they affect quantitation in LC-MS based bioanalysis has not been systematically evaluated. In this research, such evaluations were performed first by simulations and then by experiments using a typical bioanalytical method for tiagabine over the concentration range of 1-1000 ng/mL in human EDTA K(3) plasma. The results demonstrate that when an analyte contributes to IS signal, linearity and accuracy can be affected with low IS concentration. Thus, minimum IS concentrations have been obtained for different combinations of concentration range, percentage of cross contribution, and weighting factor. Moreover, while impurity in analyte reference standard is a factor in cross signal contribution, significant systematic errors could exist in the results of unknown samples even though the results of calibration standards and quality controls are acceptable. How these systematic errors would affect stability evaluation, method transfer, and cross validation has also been discussed and measures to reduce their impact are proposed. On the other hand, the signal contribution from an IS to the analyte causes shifting of a calibration curve, i.e. increase of intercept, and theoretically, the accuracy is not affected. The simulation results are well supported by experimental results. For example, good inter-run (between-run) accuracy (bias: -2.70 to 5.35%) and precision (CV: 2.07-10.50%) were obtained when runs were extracted with an IS solution containing 1-fold of the lower limit of quantitation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jchromb.2011.05.027DOI Listing
July 2011

Beyond successful ISR: case-by-case investigations for unmatched reassay results when ISR passed.

Bioanalysis 2011 May;3(9):1031-8

Bioanalytical Division, PharmaNet Canada Inc., 2500 Einstein, Québec, Canada.

Incurred sample reanalysis (ISR) is now commonly practiced in regulated bioanalytical laboratories. With an average ISR success rate of 95% or higher and an increasing number of ISR tests being conducted, more and more situations deserve scientific evaluation or investigation for the unmatched reassay results revealed in ISR tests even though they meet the acceptance criteria. First, should an investigation be initiated when an ISR test is acceptable? How large a discrepancy or what situation would warrant an investigation? What would be the impact on a study? How would investigations regarding unmatched reassay results be conducted? What are the main root causes identified? Can normal random errors cause a large discrepancy in unfavorable combinations? How could the timeline and cost be affected? All these questions are addressed in this paper with five real case examples.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/bio.10.205DOI Listing
May 2011

Bioequivalence studies of two different film-coated tablet formulations of valacyclovir of two different strengths in healthy volunteers.

Arzneimittelforschung 2010 ;60(5):273-81

Medical Department, Grupo Tecnimede, Sintra, Portugal.

These studies were conducted in order to assess the bioequivalence of two film-coated formulations containing 250 mg and 1000 mg of valacyclovir (INN: valaciclovir; CAS 124832-26-4), which is the L-valyl ester and a pro-drug of the antiviral drug acyclovir (INN: aciclovir). In the study with valacyclovir 250 mg, 36 healthy subjects were enrolled in a randomized, single-dose, open-label, 2-way crossover study, with a washout period of 10 days. In the study with valacyclovir 1000 mg, 46 healthy subjects were enrolled in a randomized, single-dose, open-label, 2-way crossover study, with a washout period of 7 days. Plasma samples were collected up to 36 h postdose for both studies. Valacyclovir levels were determined by liquid chromatography with tandem mass detection (ie, the LC/MS/MS method) (lower limit of quantification: 0.50 ng/ mL for valacyclovir and 9.93 ng/mL for acyclovir for the 250 mg study and 1.00 ng/mL for valacyclovir and 20.00 ng/ mL for acyclovir for the 1000 mg study). Pharmacokinetic parameters used for bioequivalence assessment were the area under the concentration-time curve from time zero to time of last non-zero concentration (AUC(0-t)) and from time zero to infinity (AUC(0-inf) and maximum observed concentration (C(max)). These parameters were determined from the valacyclovir concentration data using non-compartmental analysis. In the tained by analysis of variance (ANOVA) for valacyclovir were 107.54-124.26% for C(max), 95.45-103.46% for AUC(0-Inf) and 95.53-103.63% for AUC(0-t) whereas for acyclovir the 90% confidence intervals obtained were 103.19-117.02% for C(max), 99.61-106.92% for AUC(0-Inf) and 99.58-106.94% for AUC(0-t). In the study with valacyclovir 1000 mg formulations, the 90% confidence intervals obtained for valacyclovir were 93.20-107.35% for C(max), 90.87-96.27% for AUC(0-inf) and 90.87-96.27% for AUC(0-t) whereas for acyclovir the 90% CIs obtained were 95.98-104.94% for C(max), 97.13-103.94% for AUC(0-inf) and 97.14-104.09% for AUC(0-t). All the 90% confidence intervals obtained for all the parameters assessed were within the predefined range (80-125%). Based on these results, it can be concluded that the evaluated formulations are bioequivalent in terms of rate and extent of absorption.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/s-0031-1296285DOI Listing
July 2010