The warfarin-cranberry juice interaction revisited: A systematic in vitro-in vivo evaluation
BACKGROUND: Cranberry products have been implicated in several case reports to enhance the anticoagulant effect of warfarin. The mechanism could involve inhibition of the hepatic CYP2C9-mediated metabolic clearance of warfarin by components in cranberry. Because dietary/natural substances vary substantially in bioactive ingredient composition, multiple cranberry products were evaluated in vitro before testing this hypothesis in vivo.
METHODS: The inhibitory effects of five types of cranberry juices were compared with those of water on CYP2C9 activity (S-warfarin 7-hydroxylation) in human liver microsomes (HLM). The most potent juice was compared with water on S/R-warfarin pharmacokinetics in 16 healthy participants given a single dose of warfarin 10 mg.
RESULTS: Only one juice inhibited S-warfarin 7-hydroxylation in HLM in a concentration-dependent manner (P 95% at 0.05% to 0.5% juice (v/v), respectively. However, this juice had no effect on the geometric mean AUC(0-∞) and terminal half-life of S/R-warfarin in human subjects.
CONCLUSIONS: A cranberry juice that inhibited warfarin metabolism in HLM had no effect on warfarin clearance in healthy participants. The lack of an in vitro-in vivo concordance likely reflects the fact that the site of warfarin metabolism (liver) is remote from the site of exposure to the inhibitory components in the cranberry juice (intestine).