Intradermal microdialysis: Kinetics of iontophoretically delivered propranolol in forearm dermis

Grazia Stagni, Dermot O'Donnell, Yan Juan Liu, Dean L. Kellogg, Terumi Morgan, Alexander M.M. Shepherd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Intradermal microdialysis permits us to measure the concentration in dermis of drugs applied to the skin. Microdialysis is especially efficient in sampling water-soluble molecules. Consequently, it appears particularly suitable to study current based delivery systems like iontophoresis that deliver ions or highly polar molecules. The purpose of this work was to evaluate the adequacy of a skin microdialysis technique to characterize and quantify the dermatopharmacokinetics of iontophoretically delivered propranolol in the dermis of healthy human volunteers. Linear microdialysis probes were inserted in the subject's forearm skin and an iontophoresis device was installed above them. Constant current was applied for two periods of 1 h each separated by a 1-h interval. Dialysate samples were collected every 6 min for 4.4 h and analyzed by HPLC. Probes were always placed in the dermis as measured by ultrasonography. Propranolol was detectable in the dialysate. It was possible to build detailed concentration vs. midtime profiles that mirrored the current applied. Elimination rate from the dermis had first-order kinetics and was similar in all subjects. Quantification of the absorption process, indexed by lag-time and area under the concentration curve showed a high inter- and intrasubject variability that did not correlate with probe depth. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-339
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 3 2000


  • Dermis
  • Iontophoresis
  • Microdialysis
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Propranolol.HCl

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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