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Placental Drug Transporters

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Any treatment of a pregnant woman with medication (drugs) de facto results in the treatment of her unborn child, even when her unborn child is not the target of drug therapy. This is because, in most instances, the placenta is not a complete barrier to the passage of drugs from the maternal to the fetal compartment. This barrier is in part due to the presence of various efflux transporters in the placenta. The placenta is also richly endowed with influx transporters. In this article, we will review the physiological characteristics of the placenta and how it functions as a barrier to passage of drugs into the fetal compartment. In addition, we will review placental transporters that are important in modulating the exposure of the fetus to drugs and, therefore, the efficacy and toxicity of such drugs towards the fetus.
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Keywords: Placental Drug Transporters; toxicity

Document Type: Review Article

Affiliations: Department of Pharmaceutics Box 357610 University of Washington H272L Health Sciences Center Seattle, WA 98195-7610.

Publication date: February 1, 2004

More about this publication?
  • Current Drug Metabolism aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments in drug metabolism and disposition. The journal serves as an international forum for the publication of timely reviews in drug metabolism. Current Drug Metabolism is an essential journal for academic, clinical, government and pharmaceutical scientists who wish to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments. The journal covers the following areas:

    In vitro systems including CYP-450; enzyme induction and inhibition; drug-drug interactions and enzyme kinetics; pharmacokinetics, toxicokinetics, species scaling and extrapolations; P-glycoprotein and transport carriers; target organ toxicity and interindividual variability; drug metabolism and disposition studies; extrahepatic metabolism; phase I and phase II metabolism; recent developments for the identification of drug metabolites and adducts.
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