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      Statin-Related Myotoxicity: A Comprehensive Review of Pharmacokinetic, Pharmacogenomic and Muscle Components

      * ,

      Journal of Clinical Medicine

      MDPI

      statin, pharmacogenomics, muscle toxicity, mitochondria, prenylation, immune system

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          Abstract

          Statins are a cornerstone in the pharmacological prevention of cardiovascular disease. Although generally well tolerated, a small subset of patients experience statin-related myotoxicity (SRM). SRM is heterogeneous in presentation; phenotypes include the relatively more common myalgias, infrequent myopathies, and rare rhabdomyolysis. Very rarely, statins induce an anti-HMGCR positive immune-mediated necrotizing myopathy. Diagnosing SRM in clinical practice can be challenging, particularly for mild SRM that is frequently due to alternative aetiologies and the nocebo effect. Nevertheless, SRM can directly harm patients and lead to statin discontinuation/non-adherence, which increases the risk of cardiovascular events. Several factors increase systemic statin exposure and predispose to SRM, including advanced age, concomitant medications, and the nonsynonymous variant, rs4149056, in SLCO1B1, which encodes the hepatic sinusoidal transporter, OATP1B1. Increased exposure of skeletal muscle to statins increases the risk of mitochondrial dysfunction, calcium signalling disruption, reduced prenylation, atrogin-1 mediated atrophy and pro-apoptotic signalling. Rare variants in several metabolic myopathy genes including CACNA1S, CPT2, LPIN1, PYGM and RYR1 increase myopathy/rhabdomyolysis risk following statin exposure. The immune system is implicated in both conventional statin intolerance/myotoxicity via LILRB5 rs12975366, and a strong association exists between HLA-DRB1*11:01 and anti-HMGCR positive myopathy. Epigenetic factors (miR-499-5p, miR-145) have also been implicated in statin myotoxicity. SRM remains a challenge to the safe and effective use of statins, although consensus strategies to manage SRM have been proposed. Further research is required, including stringent phenotyping of mild SRM through N-of-1 trials coupled to systems pharmacology omics- approaches to identify novel risk factors and provide mechanistic insight.

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          Most cited references 245

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          The safety of statins in clinical practice.

           Jane Armitage (2007)
          Statins are effective cholesterol-lowering drugs that reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease events (heart attacks, strokes, and the need for arterial revascularisation). Adverse effects from some statins on muscle, such as myopathy and rhabdomyolysis, are rare at standard doses, and on the liver, in increasing levels of transaminases, are unusual. Myopathy--muscle pain or weakness with blood creatine kinase levels more than ten times the upper limit of the normal range--typically occurs in fewer than one in 10,000 patients on standard statin doses. However, this risk varies between statins, and increases with use of higher doses and interacting drugs. Rhabdomyolysis is a rarer and more severe form of myopathy, with myoglobin release into the circulation and risk of renal failure. Stopping statin use reverses these side-effects, usually leading to a full recovery. Asymptomatic increases in concentrations of liver transaminases are recorded with all statins, but are not clearly associated with an increased risk of liver disease. For most people, statins are safe and well-tolerated, and their widespread use has the potential to have a major effect on the global burden of cardiovascular disease.
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            Unintended effects of statins in men and women in England and Wales: population based cohort study using the QResearch database

            Objective To quantify the unintended effects of statins according to type, dose, and duration of use. Design Prospective open cohort study using routinely collected data. Setting 368 general practices in England and Wales supplying data to the QResearch database. Participants 2 004 692 patients aged 30-84 years of whom 225 922 (10.7%) were new users of statins: 159 790 (70.7%) were prescribed simvastatin, 50 328 (22.3%) atorvastatin, 8103 (3.6%) pravastatin, 4497 (1.9%) rosuvastatin, and 3204 (1.4%) fluvastatin. Methods Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate effects of statin type, dose, and duration of use. The number needed to treat (NNT) or number needed to harm (NNH) was calculated and numbers of additional or fewer cases estimated for 10 000 treated patients. Main outcome measure First recorded occurrence of cardiovascular disease, moderate or serious myopathic events, moderate or serious liver dysfunction, acute renal failure, venous thromboembolism, Parkinson’s disease, dementia, rheumatoid arthritis, cataract, osteoporotic fracture, gastric cancer, oesophageal cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, melanoma, renal cancer, breast cancer, or prostate cancer. Results Individual statins were not significantly associated with risk of Parkinson’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, venous thromboembolism, dementia, osteoporotic fracture, gastric cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, melanoma, renal cancer, breast cancer, or prostate cancer. Statin use was associated with decreased risks of oesophageal cancer but increased risks of moderate or serious liver dysfunction, acute renal failure, moderate or serious myopathy, and cataract. Adverse effects were similar across statin types for each outcome except liver dysfunction where risks were highest for fluvastatin. A dose-response effect was apparent for acute renal failure and liver dysfunction. All increased risks persisted during treatment and were highest in the first year. After stopping treatment the risk of cataract returned to normal within a year in men and women. Risk of oesophageal cancer returned to normal within a year in women and within 1-3 years in men. Risk of acute renal failure returned to normal within 1-3 years in men and women, and liver dysfunction within 1-3 years in women and from three years in men. Based on the 20% threshold for cardiovascular risk, for women the NNT with any statin to prevent one case of cardiovascular disease over five years was 37 (95% confidence interval 27 to 64) and for oesophageal cancer was 1266 (850 to 3460) and for men the respective values were 33 (24 to 57) and 1082 (711 to 2807). In women the NNH for an additional case of acute renal failure over five years was 434 (284 to 783), of moderate or severe myopathy was 259 (186 to 375), of moderate or severe liver dysfunction was 136 (109 to 175), and of cataract was 33 (28 to 38). Overall, the NNHs and NNTs for men were similar to those for women, except for myopathy where the NNH was 91 (74 to 112). Conclusions Claims of unintended benefits of statins, except for oesophageal cancer, remain unsubstantiated, although potential adverse effects at population level were confirmed and quantified. Further studies are needed to develop utilities to individualise the risks so that patients at highest risk of adverse events can be monitored closely.
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              Anti-PCSK9 antibody effectively lowers cholesterol in patients with statin intolerance: the GAUSS-2 randomized, placebo-controlled phase 3 clinical trial of evolocumab.

              This study sought to evaluate the efficacy and safety of subcutaneous evolocumab compared with oral ezetimibe in hypercholesterolemic patients who are unable to tolerate effective statin doses. Statin intolerance, which is predominantly due to muscle-related side effects, is reported in up to 10% to 20% of patients. Evolocumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody to proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9), demonstrated marked reductions in plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) in a phase 2 study in statin-intolerant patients. The GAUSS-2 (Goal Achievement after Utilizing an Anti-PCSK9 Antibody in Statin Intolerant Subjects) trial was a 12-week, double-blind study of randomized patients (2:2:1:1) to evolocumab 140 mg every two weeks (Q2W) or evolocumab 420 mg once monthly (QM) both with daily oral placebo or subcutaneous placebo Q2W or QM both with daily oral ezetimibe 10 mg. Co-primary endpoints were percent change from baseline in LDL-C at the mean of weeks 10 and 12, and at week 12. Three hundred seven patients (age 62 ± 10 years; LDL-C 193 ± 59 mg/dl) were randomized. Evolocumab reduced LDL-C from baseline by 53% to 56%, corresponding to treatment differences versus ezetimibe of 37% to 39% (p <0.001). Muscle adverse events occurred in 12% of evolocumab-treated patients and 23% of ezetimibe-treated patients. Treatment-emergent adverse events and laboratory abnormalities were comparable across treatment groups. Robust efficacy combined with favorable tolerability makes evolocumab a promising therapy for addressing the largely unmet clinical need in high-risk patients with elevated cholesterol who are statin intolerant. (Goal Achievement After Utilizing an Anti-PCSK9 Antibody in Statin Intolerant Subjects-2; NCT01763905). Copyright © 2014 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Clin Med
                J Clin Med
                jcm
                Journal of Clinical Medicine
                MDPI
                2077-0383
                20 December 2019
                January 2020
                : 9
                : 1
                Affiliations
                Department of Molecular and Clinical Pharmacology, Institute of Translational Medicine, University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3GL, UK; munirp@ 123456liverpool.ac.uk
                Author notes
                Article
                jcm-09-00022
                10.3390/jcm9010022
                7019839
                31861911
                © 2019 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

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