Experimental and conformational analyses of interactions between butenafine and lipids.

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Mingeot-Leclercq MP, Gallet X, Flore C, Van Bambeke F, Peuvot J, Brasseur R

Experimental and conformational analyses of interactions between butenafine and lipids.

Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2001 Dec;45(12):3347-54.

PubMed ID
11709307 [ View in PubMed

Butenafine (N-4-tert-butylbenzyl-N-methyl-1-naphtalenemethylamine hydrochloride) is an antifungal agent of the benzylamine class that has excellent therapeutic efficacy and a remarkably long duration of action when applied topically to treat various mycoses. Given the lipophilic nature of the molecule, efficacy may be related to an interaction with cell membrane phospholipids and permeabilization of the fungal cell wall. Similarly, high lipophilicity could account for the long duration of action, since fixation to lipids in cutaneous tissues might allow them to act as local depots for slow release of the drug. We have therefore used computer-assisted conformational analysis to investigate the interaction of butenafine with lipids and extended these observations with experimental studies in vitro using liposomes. Conformational analysis of mixed monolayers of phospholipids with the neutral and protonated forms of butenafine highlighted a possible interaction with both the hydrophilic and hydrophobic domains of membrane phospholipids. Studies using liposomes demonstrated that butenafine increases membrane fluidity [assessed by fluorescence polarization of 1-(4-trimethylammonium-phenyl)-6-phenyl-1,3,5-hexatriene and 1,6-diphenylhexatriene] and membrane permeability (studied by release of calcein from liposomes). The results show, therefore, that butenafine readily interacts with lipids and is incorporated into membrane phospholipids. These findings may help explain the excellent antifungal efficacy and long duration of action of this drug when it is used as a topical antifungal agent in humans.

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