A Phase 1/2, Dose-Escalation Trial of Deferasirox for the Treatment of Iron Overload in HFE-Related Hereditary Hemochromatosis

Rochester General Hospital, Rochester, NY, USA.
Hepatology (Impact Factor: 11.19). 11/2010; 52(5). DOI: 10.1002/hep.23879
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Hereditary hemochromatosis (HH) is characterized by increased intestinal iron absorption that may result in iron overload. Although phlebotomy is widely practiced, it is poorly tolerated or contraindicated in patients with anemias, severe heart disease, or poor venous access, and compliance can vary. The once-daily, oral iron chelator, deferasirox (Exjade) may provide an alternative treatment option. Patients with HH carrying the HFE gene who were homozygous for the Cys282Tyr mutation, serum ferritin levels of 300-2000 ng/mL, transferrin saturation ≥ 45%, and no known history of cirrhosis were enrolled in this dose-escalation study to characterize the safety and efficacy of deferasirox, comprising a core and an extension phase (each 24 weeks). Forty-nine patients were enrolled and received starting deferasirox doses of 5 (n = 11), 10 (n = 15), or 15 (n = 23) mg/kg/day. Adverse events were generally dose-dependent, the most common being diarrhea, headache, and nausea (n = 18, n = 10, and n = 8 in the core and n = 1, n = 1, and n = 0 in the extension, respectively). More patients in the 15 mg/kg/day than in the 5 or 10 mg/kg/day cohorts experienced increases in alanine aminotransferase and serum creatinine levels during the 48-week treatment period; six patients had alanine aminotransferase > 3 × baseline and greater than the upper limit of normal range, and eight patients had serum creatinine > 33% above baseline and greater than upper limit of normal on two consecutive occasions. After receiving deferasirox for 48 weeks, median serum ferritin levels decreased by 63.5%, 74.8%, and 74.1% in the 5, 10, and 15 mg/kg/day cohorts, respectively. In all cohorts, median serum ferritin decreased to < 250 ng/mL. CONCLUSION: Deferasirox doses of 5, 10, and 15 mg/kg/day can reduce iron burden in patients with HH. Based on the safety and efficacy results, starting deferasirox at 10 mg/kg/day appears to be most appropriate for further study in this patient population.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The review deals with genetic, regulatory and clinical aspects of iron homeostasis and hereditary haemochromatosis. Haemochromatosis was first described in the second half of the 19th century as a clinical entity characterized by excessive iron overload in the liver. Later, increased absorption of iron from the diet was identified as the pathophysiological hallmark. In the 1970s genetic evidence emerged supporting the apparent inheritable feature of the disease. And finally in 1996 a new “haemochromatosis gene” called HFE was described which was mutated in about 85% of the patients. From the year 2000 onward remarkable progress was made in revealing the complex molecular regulation of iron trafficking in the human body and its disturbance in haemochromatosis. The discovery of hepcidin and ferroportin and their interaction in regulating the release of iron from enterocytes and macrophages to plasma were important milestones. The discovery of new, rare variants of non-HFE-haemochromatosis was explained by mutations in the multicomponent signal transduction pathway controlling hepcidin transcription. Inhibited transcription induced by the altered function of mutated gene products, results in low plasma levels of hepcidin which facilitate entry of iron from enterocytes into plasma. In time this leads to progressive accumulation of iron and subsequently development of disease in the liver and other parenchymatous organs. Being the major site of excess iron storage and hepcidin synthesis the liver is a cornerstone in maintaining normal systemic iron homeostasis. Its central pathophysiological role in HFE-haemochromatosis with downgraded hepcidin synthesis, was recently shown by the finding that liver transplantation normalized the hepcidin levels in plasma and there was no sign of iron accumulation in the new liver.
    Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology 08/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.08.005 · 2.49 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This update develops the actual therapeutic options in the management of the joint involvement of calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease (CPPD), basic calcium phosphate (BCP) deposition disease, hemochromatosis (HH), ochronosis, oxalosis, and Wilson's disease. Conventional pharmaceutical treatment provides benefits for most diseases. Anti-interleukine-1 (IL-1) treatment could provide similar results in CPPD than in gout flares. There is only limited evidence about the efficacy of preventive long-term colchicine intake, methotrexate, and hydroxychloroquine in chronic CPPD. Needle aspiration and lavage have satisfactory short and midterm results in BCP. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy has also proved its efficacy for high-doses regimes. Phlebotomy does not seem to have shown real efficacy on joint involvement in HH so far. Iron chelators' effects have not been assessed on joint involvement either, while IL-1 blockade may prove useful. NSAIDs have limited efficacy on joint involvement of oxalosis, while colchicine and steroids have not been assessed either. The use of nitisinone for ochronotic arthropathy is still much debated, but it could provide beneficial effects on joint involvement. The effects of copper chelators have not been assessed either in the joint involvement of Wilson's disease. NSAIDs should be avoided because of the liver affection they may worsen.
    05/2014; 2014:375202. DOI:10.1155/2014/375202
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In 2005, the oral iron chelator deferasirox was approved by the FDA for clinical use as a first-line therapy for blood-transfusion-related iron overload. Nephrotoxicity is the most serious and frequent adverse effect of deferasirox treatment. This nephrotoxicity can present as an acute or chronic decrease in glomerular filtration rate (GFR). Features of proximal tubular dysfunction might also be present. In clinical trials and observational studies, GFR is decreased in 30-100% of patients treated with deferasirox, depending on dose, method of assessment and population studied. Nephrotoxicity is usually nonprogressive and/or reversible and rapid iron depletion is one of several risk factors. Scarce data are available on the molecular mechanisms of nephrotoxicity and the reasons for the specific proximal tubular sensitivity to the drug. Although deferasirox promotes apoptosis of cultured proximal tubular cells, the trigger has not been well characterized. Observational studies are required to track current trends in deferasirox prescription, assess the epidemiology of deferasirox nephrotoxicity in routine clinical practice, explore the effect on outcomes of various monitoring and dose-adjustment protocols and elucidate the long-term consequences of the different features of nephrotoxicity. Deferasirox nephrotoxicity can be more common in the elderly; thus, specific efforts should be dedicated to investigate the effect of deferasirox use in this group of patients.
    Nature Reviews Nephrology 07/2014; DOI:10.1038/nrneph.2014.121 · 8.37 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 20, 2014