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27.03.2020: New Publications in Nature Scientific Reports and Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology

Read all about the characterization of drug effects on human currents using automated patch clamp platforms

: Cross-site and cross-platform variability of automated patch clamp assessments of drug effects on human cardiac currents in recombinant cells

Automated patch clamp (APC) instruments enable efficient evaluation of electrophysiologic effects of drugs on human cardiac currents in heterologous expression systems. Differences in experimental protocols, instruments, and dissimilar site procedures affect the variability of IC50 values characterizing drug block potency. This impacts the utility of APC platforms for assessing a drug’s cardiac safety margin. We determined variability of APC data from multiple sites that measured blocking potency of 12 blinded drugs (with different levels of proarrhythmic risk) against four human cardiac currents (hERG [IKr], hCav1.2 [L-Type ICa], peak hNav1.5, [Peak INa], late hNav1.5 [Late INa]) with recommended protocols (to minimize variance) using five APC platforms across 17 sites. IC50 variability (25/75 percentiles) differed for drugs and currents (e.g., 10.4-fold for dofetilide block of hERG current and 4-fold for mexiletine block of hNav1.5 current). Within-platform variance predominated for 4 of 12 hERG blocking drugs and 4 of 6 hNav1.5 blocking drugs. hERG and hNav1.5 block. Bland-Altman plots depicted varying agreement across APC platforms. A follow-up survey suggested multiple sources of experimental variability that could be further minimized by stricter adherence to standard protocols. Adoption of best practices would ensure less variable APC datasets and improved safety margins and proarrhythmic risk assessments.

Download the Nature Scientific Reports Publication

Read the latest on a systematic approach that estimates hERG block potency for TdP liability assessment

Title: A systematic strategy for estimating hERG block potency and its implications in a new cardiac safety paradigm

hERG block potency is widely used to calculate a drug's safety margin against its torsadogenic potential. Previous studies are confounded by use of different patch clamp electrophysiology protocols and a lack of statistical quantification of experimental variability. Since the new cardiac safety paradigm being discussed by the International Council for Harmonisation promotes a tighter integration of nonclinical and clinical data for torsadogenic risk assessment, a more systematic approach to estimate the hERG block potency and safety margin is needed.

Download the TAAP Publication

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