Saturable uptake of cefixime, a new oral cephalosporin without an α‐amino group, by the rat intestine

Akira Tsuji, Hideki Hirooka, Tetsuya Terasaki, Ikumi Tamai, Emi Nakashima

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37 Citations (Scopus)


The mechanism of intestinal uptake of cefixime, a new oral cephalosporin antibiotic, has been examined using the everted jejunum of rats. The initial uptake rates were apparently pH‐dependent with the maximum rate at pH 5.0 and a 3‐fold reduction at pH 7.0. The uptake at pH 5.0 followed mixed‐type kinetics involving saturable and non‐saturable processes in a manner similar to that for several amino‐β‐lactam antibiotics. Cefixime uptake was inhibited significantly by 20 mM permeants such as cyclacillin, cephradine, benzylpenicillin, propicillin, glycyl‐L‐proline and glycyl‐glycine. Replacement of Na+ in the medium with choline produced a slight but significant inhibition of cefixime uptake. In spite of the absence of significant inhibition by the amino acids glycine and proline, the dipeptide, glycyl‐L‐proline in Na+‐free medium showed a marked inhibitory effect. The inhibition kinetics of cefixime uptake by glycyl‐L‐proline and cyclacillin were consistent with competitive‐type inhibition. This study provides the first evidence of saturable intestinal uptake of a cephem antibiotic without an α‐amino group in the side chain, suggesting transport through the dipeptide carrier system(s). 1987 Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)272-277
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1987 Apr

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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