In vitro-in vivo correlation for complex non-oral drug products: Where do we stand?

Jie Shen, University of Connecticut
Diane J. Burgess, University of Connecticut


In vitro-in vivo correlation (IVIVC) is a predictive mathematical model describing the relationship between an in vitro property and a relevant in vivo response of drug products. Since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a regulatory guidance on the development, evaluation, and applications of IVIVC for extended release (ER) oral dosage forms in 1997, IVIVC has been one of the most important issues in the field of pharmaceutics. However, even with the aid of the FDA IVIVC Guidance, only very limited Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) submission for ER oral drug products included adequate IVIVC data to enable the completion of bioequivalence (BE) review within first review cycle. Establishing an IVIVC for non-oral dosage forms has remained extremely challenging due to their complex nature and the lack of in vitro release methods that are capable of mimicking in vivo drug release conditions. This review presents a general overview of recent advances in the development of IVIVC for complex non-oral dosage forms (such as parenteral polymeric microspheres/ implants, and transdermal formulations), and briefly summarizes the knowledge gained over the past two decades. Lastly this review discusses possible directions for future development of IVIVC for complex nonoral dosage forms.