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Comparative pharmacokinetic study of two mycophenolate mofetil formulations in stable kidney transplant recipients

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      We compared steady-state pharmacokinetics of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) – Myfenax® (Teva) and CellCept® (Roche) – in stable kidney transplant recipients (KTRs). This was an international, multi-centre, randomized, open-label, two-treatment, two-sequence crossover study with a 3-month follow-up. We included KTRs at least 12 months post-transplantation with stable renal graft function for at least 3 months. The maintenance treatment consisted of MMF in combination with tacrolimus with or without steroids. At the end of the two treatment periods, 6-h or 12-h PK studies of mycophenolic acid (MPA) were performed. A total of 43 patients (mean age: 50.7 ± 13.5 years; 19 females, 24 males) were randomized. Estimates of test to reference ratios (90% CIs) were 0.959 (0.899; 1.023) h*μg/ml for AUC (0–tau) and 0.873 (0.787; 0.968) μg/ml for C max. Estimates for AUC (0–6h) were 0.923 (0.865; 0.984) h*μg/ml and 0.985 (0.877; 1.106) μg/ml for C min. Thus, AUC (0–tau), AUC (0–6h), and C min of MPA were within the predefined margins. C max was somewhat outside of these margins in this set of patients. The numbers and types of adverse events were not different between the two treatments. The steady-state pharmacokinetics of MPA as well as adverse events are comparable for Myfenax® and CellCept® in tacrolimus-treated stable KTRs. (EudraCT-No.: 2009-010562-31; ClinicalTrials.Gov number: NCT00991510)

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      Reduced exposure to calcineurin inhibitors in renal transplantation.

      Immunosuppressive regimens with the fewest possible toxic effects are desirable for transplant recipients. This study evaluated the efficacy and relative toxic effects of four immunosuppressive regimens. We randomly assigned 1645 renal-transplant recipients to receive standard-dose cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids, or daclizumab induction, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids in combination with low-dose cyclosporine, low-dose tacrolimus, or low-dose sirolimus. The primary end point was the estimated glomerular filtration rate (GFR), as calculated by the Cockcroft-Gault formula, 12 months after transplantation. Secondary end points included acute rejection and allograft survival. The mean calculated GFR was higher in patients receiving low-dose tacrolimus (65.4 ml per minute) than in the other three groups (range, 56.7 to 59.4 ml per minute). The rate of biopsy-proven acute rejection was lower in patients receiving low-dose tacrolimus (12.3%) than in those receiving standard-dose cyclosporine (25.8%), low-dose cyclosporine (24.0%), or low-dose sirolimus (37.2%). Allograft survival differed significantly among the four groups (P=0.02) and was highest in the low-dose tacrolimus group (94.2%), followed by the low-dose cyclosporine group (93.1%), the standard-dose cyclosporine group (89.3%), and the low-dose sirolimus group (89.3%). Serious adverse events were more common in the low-dose sirolimus group than in the other groups (53.2% vs. a range of 43.4 to 44.3%), although a similar proportion of patients in each group had at least one adverse event during treatment (86.3 to 90.5%). A regimen of daclizumab, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids in combination with low-dose tacrolimus may be advantageous for renal function, allograft survival, and acute rejection rates, as compared with regimens containing daclizumab induction plus either low-dose cyclosporine or low-dose sirolimus or with standard-dose cyclosporine without induction. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00231764 [ClinicalTrials.gov].). Copyright 2007 Massachusetts Medical Society.
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        Mycophenolate mofetil and its mechanisms of action.

        Mycophenolate mofetil (MMF, CellCept(R)) is a prodrug of mycophenolic acid (MPA), an inhibitor of inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH). This is the rate-limiting enzyme in de novo synthesis of guanosine nucleotides. T- and B-lymphocytes are more dependent on this pathway than other cell types are. Moreover, MPA is a fivefold more potent inhibitor of the type II isoform of IMPDH, which is expressed in activated lymphocytes, than of the type I isoform of IMPDH, which is expressed in most cell types. MPA has therefore a more potent cytostatic effect on lymphocytes than on other cell types. This is the principal mechanism by which MPA exerts immunosuppressive effects. Three other mechanisms may also contribute to the efficacy of MPA in preventing allograft rejection and other applications. First, MPA can induce apoptosis of activated T-lymphocytes, which may eliminate clones of cells responding to antigenic stimulation. Second, by depleting guanosine nucleotides, MPA suppresses glycosylation and the expression of some adhesion molecules, thereby decreasing the recruitment of lymphocytes and monocytes into sites of inflammation and graft rejection. Third, by depleting guanosine nucleotides MPA also depletes tetrahydrobiopterin, a co-factor for the inducible form of nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). MPA therefore suppresses the production by iNOS of NO, and consequent tissue damage mediated by peroxynitrite. CellCept(R) suppresses T-lymphocytic responses to allogeneic cells and other antigens. The drug also suppresses primary, but not secondary, antibody responses. The efficacy of regimes including CellCept(R) in preventing allograft rejection, and in the treatment of rejection, is now firmly established. CellCept(R) is also efficacious in several experimental animal models of chronic rejection, and it is hoped that the drug will have the same effect in humans.
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          Clinical pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of mycophenolate in solid organ transplant recipients.

          This review aims to provide an extensive overview of the literature on the clinical pharmacokinetics of mycophenolate in solid organ transplantation and a briefer summary of current pharmacodynamic information. Strategies are suggested for further optimisation of mycophenolate therapy and areas where additional research is warranted are highlighted. Mycophenolate has gained widespread acceptance as the antimetabolite immunosuppressant of choice in organ transplant regimens. Mycophenolic acid (MPA) is the active drug moiety. Currently, two mycophenolate compounds are available, mycophenolate mofetil and enteric-coated (EC) mycophenolate sodium. MPA is a potent, selective and reversible inhibitor of inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH), leading to eventual arrest of T- and B-lymphocyte proliferation. Mycophenolate mofetil and EC-mycophenolate sodium are essentially completely hydrolysed to MPA by esterases in the gut wall, blood, liver and tissue. Oral bioavailability of MPA, subsequent to mycophenolate mofetil administration, ranges from 80.7% to 94%. EC-mycophenolate sodium has an absolute bioavailability of MPA of approximately 72%. MPA binds 97-99% to serum albumin in patients with normal renal and liver function. It is metabolised in the liver, gastrointestinal tract and kidney by uridine diphosphate gluconosyltransferases (UGTs). 7-O-MPA-glucuronide (MPAG) is the major metabolite of MPA. MPAG is usually present in the plasma at 20- to 100-fold higher concentrations than MPA, but it is not pharmacologically active. At least three minor metabolites are also formed, of which an acyl-glucuronide has pharmacological potency comparable to MPA. MPAG is excreted into the urine via active tubular secretion and into the bile by multi-drug resistance protein 2 (MRP-2). MPAG is de-conjugated back to MPA by gut bacteria and then reabsorbed in the colon. Mycophenolate mofetil and EC-mycophenolate sodium display linear pharmacokinetics. Following mycophenolate mofetil administration, MPA maximum concentration usually occurs in 1-2 hours. EC-mycophenolate sodium exhibits a median lag time in absorption of MPA from 0.25 to 1.25 hours. A secondary peak in the concentration-time profile of MPA, due to enterohepatic recirculation, often appears 6-12 hours after dosing. This contributes approximately 40% to the area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC). The mean elimination half-life of MPA ranges from 9 to 17 hours. MPA displays large between- and within-subject pharmacokinetic variability. Dose-normalised MPA AUC can vary more than 10-fold. Total MPA concentrations should be interpreted with caution in patients with severe renal impairment, liver disease and hypoalbuminaemia. In such individuals, MPA and MPAG plasma protein binding may be altered, changing the fraction of free MPA available. Apparent oral clearance (CL/F) of total MPA appears to increase in proportion to the increased free fraction, with a reduction in total MPA AUC. However, there may be little change in the MPA free concentration. Ciclosporin inhibits biliary excretion of MPAG by MRP-2, reducing enterohepatic recirculation of MPA. Exposure to MPA when mycophenolate mofetil is given in combination with ciclosporin is approximately 30-40% lower than when given alone or with tacrolimus or sirolimus. High dosages of corticosteroids may induce expression of UGT, reducing exposure to MPA. Other co-medications can interfere with the absorption, enterohepatic recycling and metabolism of mycophenolate. Most pharmacokinetic investigations of MPA have involved mycophenolate mofetil rather than EC-mycophenolate sodium therapy. In population pharmacokinetic studies, MPA CL/F in adults ranges from 14.1 to 34.9 L/h (ciclosporin co-therapy) and from 11.9 to 25.4 L/h (tacrolimus co-therapy). Patient bodyweight, serum albumin concentration and immunosuppressant co-therapy have a significant influence on CL/F. The majority of pharmacodynamic data on MPA have been obtained in patients receiving mycophenolate mofetil therapy in the first year after kidney transplantation. Low MPA AUC is associated with increased incidence of biopsy-proven acute rejection. Gastrointestinal adverse events may be dose related. Leukopenia and anaemia have been associated with high MPA AUC, trough concentration and metabolite concentrations in some, but not all, studies. High free MPA exposure has been identified as a risk factor for leukopenia in some investigations. Targeting a total MPA AUC from 0 to 12 hours (AUC12) of 30-60 mg.hr/L is likely to minimise the risk of acute rejection and may reduce toxicity. IMPDH monitoring is in the early experimental stage. Individualisation of mycophenolate therapy should lead to improved patient outcomes. MPA AUC12 appears to be the most useful exposure measure for such individualisation. Limited sampling strategies and Bayesian forecasting are practical means of estimating MPA AUC12 without full concentration-time profiling. Target concentration intervention may be particularly useful in the first few months post-transplant and prior to major changes in anti-rejection therapy. In patients with impaired renal or hepatic function or hypoalbuminaemia, free drug measurement could be valuable in further interpretation of MPA exposure.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1 ]Division of Nephrology and Dialysis, Department of Medicine III, Medical University Vienna Austria
            [2 ]Department of Nephrology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital Charité Berlin, Germany
            [3 ]Department of Nephrology and Transplantation Westpfalz-Klinikum, Kaiserslautern, Germany
            [4 ]Department of Nephrology, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases, Medical University of Silesia in Katowice Poland
            [5 ]Department of Nephrology, Hypertension, Transplantation, University of Łódź Łódź, Poland
            [6 ]Nephrology & Transplant, University Hospital Wales Cardiff, United Kingdom
            [7 ]Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, University Hospital Rechts der Isar München, Germany
            [8 ]Teva Pharmaceuticals Europe Harlow, United Kingdom
            Author notes
            Gere Sunder-Plassmann MD, Division of Nephrology and Dialysis, Department of Medicine III, Medical University Vienna, Währinger Gürtel 18-20, 1090 Vienna, Austria. Tel.: +43 1404004511; fax: +43 1404004347; e-mail: gere.sunder-plassmann@ 123456meduniwien.ac.at

            Conflicts of Interest The authors GS-P,PR, TR, AW, MN, JL, and MG received research support from Teva Europe; GS-P received speaker fees from Teva Europe, MF is a fulltime employee of Teva Europe.

            Journal
            Transpl Int
            Transpl. Int
            tri
            Transplant International
            Blackwell Publishing Ltd (Oxford, UK )
            0934-0874
            1432-2277
            June 2012
            16 April 2012
            : 25
            : 6
            : 680-686
            22500920
            3528070
            10.1111/j.1432-2277.2012.01475.x
            © 2012 The Authors. Transplant International © 2012 European Society for Organ Transplantation

            Re-use of this article is permitted in accordance with the Creative Commons Deed, Attribution 2.5, which does not permit commercial exploitation.

            Categories
            Clinical Research

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