Quantification of Transporter and Receptor Proteins in Dog Brain Capillaries and Choroid Plexus: Relevance for the Distribution in Brain and CSF of Selected BCRP and P-gp Substrates

Clemens Braun, Atsushi Sakamoto, Holger Fuchs, Naoki Ishiguro, Shinobu Suzuki, Yunhai Cui, Klaus Klinder, Michitoshi Watanabe, Tetsuya Terasaki, Achim Sauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Transporters at the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and the blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier (BCSFB) play a pivotal role as gatekeepers for efflux or uptake of endogenous and exogenous molecules. The protein expression of a number of them has already been determined in the brains of rodents, nonhuman primates, and humans using quantitative targeted absolute proteomics (QTAP). The dog is an important animal model for drug discovery and development, especially for safety evaluations. The purpose of the present study was to clarify the relevance of the transporter protein expression for drug distribution in the dog brain and CSF. We used QTAP to examine the protein expression of 17 selected transporters and receptors at the dog BBB and BCSFB. For the first time, we directly linked the expression of two efflux transporters, P-glycoprotein (P-gp) and breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP), to regional brain and CSF distribution using specific substrates. Two cocktails, each containing one P-gp substrate (quinidine or apafant) and one BCRP substrate (dantrolene or daidzein) were infused intravenously prior to collection of the brain. Transporter expression varied only slightly between the capillaries of different brain regions and did not result in region-specific distribution of the investigated substrates. There were, however, distinct differences between brain capillaries and choroid plexus. Largest differences were observed for BCRP and P-gp: both were highly expressed in brain capillaries, but no BCRP and only low amounts of P-gp were detected in the choroid plexus. Kp,uu,brain and Kp,uu,CSF of both P-gp substrates were indicative of drug efflux. Also, Kp,uu,brain for the BCRP substrates was low. In contrast, Kp,uu,CSF for both BCRP substrates was close to unity, resulting in Kp,uu,CSF/Kp,uu,brain ratios of 7 and 8, respectively. We conclude that the drug transporter expression profiles differ between the BBB and BCSFB in dogs, that there are species differences in the expression profiles, and that CSF is not a suitable surrogate for unbound brain concentrations of BCRP substrates in dogs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3436-3447
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular pharmaceutics
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Oct 2


  • BCRP
  • P-gp
  • QTAP
  • blood-CSF barrier
  • blood-brain barrier
  • canine
  • choroid plexus
  • dog
  • efflux transport
  • transporter expression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery


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