2003 Volume 51 Issue 11 Pages 1241-1245
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the ability of a quantitative prediction method using a taste sensor to determine the bitterness of clarithromycin powder suspensions of various concentrations and of a commercial clarithromycin dry syrup product (Clarith® dry syrup, Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Tokyo) containing aminoalkyl methacrylate polymer as a taste-masker. The bitterness of the clarithromycin dry syrup product dissolved in various beverages was also evaluated in gustatory sensation tests and using the taste sensor. In the sensor measurements, three variables were used to predict bitterness in single and multiple regression analysis: relative sensor output (R), the change of membrane potential caused by adsorption (CPA), and CPA/R ratio. The CPA values for channel 3 of the sensor predicted well the bitterness of clarithromycin powder suspensions and their filtered solutions. For Clarith® dry syrup, the sensor output was small, suggesting that aminoalkyl methacrylate polymer was successful in almost complete masking of the bitter taste of the dry syrup product. When the bitterness intensities of mixtures of 1 g of Clarith® dry syrup with 25 ml of water, coffee, tea, green tea, cocoa, milk, and a sports drink were examined, a good correlation was obtained between the results from human taste tests and the predicted values calculated on the basis of multiple regression analysis using CPA data from channel 4, and the CPA/R ratio from channel 3 of the taste sensor (r2=0.963, p<0.005). Co-administration of 1 g of Clarith® dry syrup with an acidic sports drink was found to be the most bitter using either method.