[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Anemia, a common complication of chronic kidney disease, usually develops as a consequence of erythropoietin deficiency. Recombinant human erythropoietin (epoetin alfa) is indicated for the correction of anemia associated with this condition. However, the optimal level of hemoglobin correction is not defined.
In this open-label trial, we studied 1432 patients with chronic kidney disease, 715 of whom were randomly assigned to receive a dose of epoetin alfa targeted to achieve a hemoglobin level of 13.5 g per deciliter and 717 of whom were assigned to receive a dose targeted to achieve a level of 11.3 g per deciliter. The median study duration was 16 months. The primary end point was a composite of death, myocardial infarction, hospitalization for congestive heart failure (without renal replacement therapy), and stroke.
A total of 222 composite events occurred: 125 events in the high-hemoglobin group, as compared with 97 events in the low-hemoglobin group (hazard ratio, 1.34; 95% confidence interval, 1.03 to 1.74; P=0.03). There were 65 deaths (29.3%), 101 hospitalizations for congestive heart failure (45.5%), 25 myocardial infarctions (11.3%), and 23 strokes (10.4%). Seven patients (3.2%) were hospitalized for congestive heart failure and myocardial infarction combined, and one patient (0.5%) died after having a stroke. Improvements in the quality of life were similar in the two groups. More patients in the high-hemoglobin group had at least one serious adverse event.
The use of a target hemoglobin level of 13.5 g per deciliter (as compared with 11.3 g per deciliter) was associated with increased risk and no incremental improvement in the quality of life. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00211120 [ClinicalTrials.gov].).
New England Journal of Medicine 12/2006; 355(20):2085-98. · 51.66 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We evaluated whether early ribavirin pharmacokinetics differ comparing hepatitis C/human immunodeficiency virus coinfected sustained virological responders and nonresponders.
Twenty-four treatment-naive coinfected patients received pegylated-interferon alfa-2b (12 kDa) (1.5 microg/kg) once weekly plus daily ribavirin (13.6 mg/kg/d) for up to 48 weeks. Serum HCV RNA, serum alanine aminotransferase, and plasma ribavirin levels were measured frequently during the first 16 days of therapy and monthly thereafter.
Six patients were sustained responders. During the first 4 weeks of treatment, median plasma ribavirin levels and area under the ribavirin curve were significantly lower (p<0.0001 and p<0.01, respectively) in sustained responders compared with nonresponders. Compared to ribavirin levels at weeks 2 and 4, ribavirin levels in sustained responders continued to increase significantly until week 8 (p<0.02). At week 4, hemoglobin declines were significantly (p=0.002) greater in sustained responders than nonresponders. At week 1, serum HCV RNA levels and changes in alanine aminotransferase levels relative to baseline could identify likely responders better than plasma ribavirin levels.
We conjecture that intracellular ribavirin accumulation may be enhanced early in treatment in coinfected sustained responders, although this hypothesis should be investigated further. At week 1, serum HCV RNA and changes in alanine aminotransferase levels relative to baseline might identify likely responders.
Journal of Hepatology 07/2007; 47(1):23-30. · 9.86 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The population pharmacokinetics of ribavirin were assessed in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection treated with interferon alpha-2b and ribavirin in four clinical efficacy studies. The authors collected 3450 ribavirin serum concentrations from 1105 patients at different treatment weeks for inclusion in the analysis. Population factors included gender, age, body weight, serum creatinine, creatinine clearance, and previous interferon treatment history. Ribavirin apparent clearance (CL/F) was calculated from individual patients' daily doses divided by concentration values, and the influence of these factors was assessed by multiple regression. Body weight, gender, age, and serum creatinine affected CL/F. Population mean CL/F estimates were 17.9 L/h (female) and 21.5 L/h (male) assuming an age of 40 years and body weight of 70 kg. Ribavirin apparent clearance increased as a function of body weight and decreased at ages greater than 40 years. Serum creatinine had little influence on CL/F, which may reflect the relatively normal renal function of these patients. Total CL/F variability was approximately 28%. The four covariates in the model explained 27% of this variability, and were thus of limited clinical significance because of the substantial residual variability not accounted for by the model. In assessing the relationship between pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, the week 4 hemoglobin nadir value was negatively associated with week 4 ribavirin concentrations. The percentage of reduction from baseline was positively associated with ribavirin concentrations, although these data were highly variable. Loss of HCV-RNA at 24 weeks after completion of treatment was considered a response to interferon and ribavirin treatment in a logistic regression analysis of clinical and pharmacokinetic variables and treatment response in the interferon-naive patients. Hepatitis C virus genotype, pretreatment HCV-RNA titer, duration of treatment period, week 4 ribavirin concentration, and patient age affected the likelihood of response. Higher ribavirin concentrations at treatment week 4 were associated with a higher response rate. Variables that have predictive value for treatment outcome in patients treated with interferon and ribavirin are similar to those previously reported for interferon monotherapy.
Therapeutic Drug Monitoring 11/2000; 22(5):555-65. · 2.23 Impact Factor
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