The new generation of intravenous iron: chemistry, pharmacology, and toxicology of ferric carboxymaltose.

Vifor (International) Inc., St. Gallen, Switzerland.
Arzneimittel-Forschung (Impact Factor: 0.56). 01/2010; 60(6a):345-53. DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1296299
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT An ideal preparation for intravenous iron replacement therapy should balance effectiveness and safety. Compounds that release iron rapidly tend to cause toxicity, while large molecules can induce antibody formation and cause anaphylactic reactions. There is therefore a need for an intravenous iron preparation that delivers appropriate amounts of iron in a readily available form but with minimal side effects and thus with an excellent safety profile. In this paper, a review is given on the chemistry, pharmacology, and toxicology of ferric carboxymaltose (FCM, Ferinject), a stable and robust complex formulated as a colloidal solution with a physiological pH. The complex is gradually taken up mainly from the hepatic reticulo-endothelial system (RES), followed by effective delivery of iron to the endogeneous transport system for the haem synthesis in new erythrocytes, as shown in studies on the pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics with radio-labelled FCM. Studies with radio-labelled FCM also demonstrated a barrier function of the placenta and a low transfer of iron into the milk of lactating rats. Safety pharmacology studies indicated a favourable profile with regard to cardiovascular, central nervous, respiratory, and renal toxicity. A high maximum non-lethal dose was demonstrated in the single-dose toxicity studies. Furthermore, based on the No-Observed-Adverse-Effect-Levels (NOAELs) found in repeated-dose toxicity studies and on the cumulative doses administered, FCM has good safety margins. Reproductive and developmental toxicity studies did not reveal any direct or indirect harmful effects. No genotoxic potential was found in in vitro or in vivo studies. Moreover, antigenicity studies showed no cross-reactivity of FMC with anti-dextran antibodies and also suggested that FCM does not possess sensitizing potential. Lastly, no evidence of irritation was found in local tolerance studies with FCM. This excellent toxicity profile and the high effectiveness of FCM allow the administration of high doses as a single infusion or bolus injection, which will enhance the cost-effectiveness and convenience of iron replacement therapy. In conclusion, FCM has many of the characteristics of an ideal intravenous iron preparation.

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    ABSTRACT: Background Currently available intravenous (IV) iron agents vary in indication, dosing regimens and safety profiles. Ferric carboxymaltose (FCM) is a stable, non-dextran-containing iron formulation developed for rapid IV administration in high doses with controlled delivery of iron into target tissues. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the safety of FCM compared with standard medical care (SMC) in dialysis (HD) and non-dialysis-dependent (NDD) chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients.Methods Adults 18-85 years of age with CKD were enrolled. NDD-CKD (n = 204) patients received an undiluted IV dose of FCM (15 mg/kg to a maximum of 1000 mg IV) and HD-CKD (n = 50) patients received an undiluted IV push of 200 mg ∼30-60 min into the dialysis session. Subjects randomized to the SMC group (n = 259) received treatment determined by the investigator that could include oral iron, IV iron or no iron.ResultsSingle doses of FCM of 200 mg in HD-CKD patients and up to 1000 mg in NDD-CKD patients were well tolerated. Incidences of treatment-emergent adverse events were similar between the groups: 30.3% (77 of 254) in the FCM group and 32.8% (85 of 259) in the SMC group. Incidences of serious adverse events were higher in the SMC group overall and in patients receiving iron sucrose or sodium ferric gluconate. There were no clinically significant differences in laboratory or clinical chemistry values or vital signs between the groups. There were no statistically significant differences between the FCM and SMC groups in indices of hemoglobin (Hb) improvement, including proportions of patients achieving a ≥1 g/dL increase in Hb and proportions of patients achieving Hb level of >12 g/dL.ConclusionFCM in doses of 200 mg for HD-CKD patients and up to 1000 mg in NDD-CKD patients were well tolerated and displayed comparable efficacy to other IV iron formulations.
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May 26, 2014