Pancreatic enzyme preparations are a life-saving substitution for a pivotal physiological function of the entire organism that is impaired in chronic pancreatitis, cystic fibrosis and other diseases with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. Pancreatic enzyme preparations, generically called pancreatin, are not alike. Rather, they present a broad variety of pancreatin composition.
The properties of a set of commercially available pancreatin preparations were investigated in light of the physiological tasks such enzymes must fulfill during the normal digestive process.
Measurements of size, surface, acid resistance, release of enzymes, pharmacokinetics and batch consistency were undertaken.
Although all pancreatin preparations contain the declared lipase units and are acid-stable, a wide variation was observed in the particle size (pyloric passage), specific surface area and release kinetics of lipase activity at pH 6 (duodenum).
At present, available pancreatin preparations vary widely with respect to investigated parameters, which may have consequences for facilitating optimal digestion.
aII. Medizinische Klinik, Universitätsklinikum Mannheim, Universität Heidelberg
bSolvay Pharmaceuticals GmbH, Bereich Enzymforschung Hannover
cInstitut für Klinische Forschung, Hannover, Germany
dGastrocentrum, Karolinska University Hospital, Huddinge, Stockholm, Sweden
Correspondence to Professor Johannes-Matthias Löhr, MD, Gastrocentrum, Department of Surgical Gastroenterology, Karolinska Institute University Hospital, Huddinge, SE-141 86 Stockholm, Sweden
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Received 7 October 2008 Accepted 28 December 2008