Acne vulgaris is a common chronic skin disease in teenagers and young adults. Minocycline, an antibiotic, has thus far been widely utilized to treat acne, but only via oral administration. Recently, a topical minocycline gel (BPX-01) was developed to directly deliver minocycline to the epidermis and pilosebaceous unit to achieve localized treatment with lower doses of drug. In order to evaluate the effectiveness of topical drug delivery in terms of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, visualization and quantification of drug within a biological tissue is essential. As minocycline is a known fluorophore, we demonstrate a method for visualization and quantification of minocycline within human skin tissue by utilizing a phasor approach to fluorescence lifetime microscopy (FLIM). In phasor analysis of FLIM, the fluorescence decay trace from each pixel in the FLIM image is plotted as a single point in the phasor plot. Since every fluorophore has a specific decay trace, we can identify a specific molecule by its position in the phasor plot. To demonstrate the feasibility of this visualization and quantification method, the human facial skin samples treated with various concentrations of BPX-01 were investigated using the phasor approach to FLIM. The unique signature of minocycline in FLIM phasor analysis was successfully differentiated from the endogenous fluorescence of human tissue. Furthermore, by sorting the individual pixels of minocycline signature in FLIM image, the distribution of minocycline within human facial skin can be visualized and quantified. Based on these results, we believe that the visualization and quantification method using a phasor approach to FLIM can play an important role in future pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics analyses.
Sinyoung Jeong, Maiko Hermsmeier, Sam Osseiran, Akira Yamamoto, Usha Nagavarapu, Kin F. Chan, and Conor L. Evans, "Phasor approach to fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy for visualization and quantification of drug distribution of a topical minocycline gel in human facial skin (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10475, Visualizing and Quantifying Drug Distribution in Tissue II, 104750I (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 27, 2018; Published: 14 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2290898.5751470622001.
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