Combination of Gemcitabine with Cell-Penetrating Peptides: A Pharmacokinetic Approach Using In Silico Tools
Gemcitabine is an anticancer drug used to treat a wide range of solid tumors and is a first line treatment for pancreatic cancer. Our group has previously developed novel conjugates of gemcitabine with cell-penetrating peptides (CPP), and here we report some preliminary data regarding the pharmacokinetics of gemcitabine, two gemcitabine-CPP conjugates and respective CPP gathered from GastroPlus™, and analyze these results considering our previous evaluation of gemcitabine release and conjugates’ bioactivity. Additionally, seeking to shed some light on the relation between the penetration ability of CPP and their physicochemical properties, chemical descriptors for the 20 natural amino acids were calculated, a new principal property scale (z-scale) was created and CPP prediction models were developed, establishing quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR). The z-scores of the peptides conjugated with gemcitabine are presented and analyzed with the aforementioned data.