Population Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of Ribavirin in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C Genotype 1 Infection

School of Pharmacy, University of Maryland, Baltimore, 21201, USA.
The AAPS Journal (Impact Factor: 3.8). 05/2012; 14(3):571-80. DOI: 10.1208/s12248-012-9368-z
Source: PubMed


We report a population pharmacokinetic (PK) and pharmacodynamic (PD) model of orally administered ribavirin in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection enrolled in a multicenter clinical trial, including the estimation of covariate effects on ribavirin PK parameters and sustained viral response (SVR). Ribavirin concentrations obtained from 144 patients, consisting of n = 71 African American (AA) and n = 73 Caucasian Americans (CA), during 24 weeks of therapy were best described by a two-compartment model with first-order absorption and elimination parameterized in terms of apparent oral clearance (CL/F), apparent central volume (Vc/F), apparent peripheral volume (Vp/F), and apparent intercompartmental clearance (Q/F). The typical population parameters were CL/F (19.0 L/h), Vc/F (1,130 L), Vp/F (4,020 L), and Q/F (38.6). The Vp/F was approximately 50% greater in AA compared to CA. Significant covariates in the SVR model included IL-28B genotype, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance, and ribavirin exposure during the first week (AUC(0-7)). The population PK and logistic regression models both described the observed ribavirin concentration data and SVR data well. These findings suggest that optimization of ribavirin plasma concentrations during the first week of ribavirin dosing is most critical in AA patients in order to increase the rate of SVR, especially those with the IL-28B TT genotype.

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Available from: Michael J Fossler
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: Peginterferon and ribavirin treatment is less effective for hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype 1 infections in African Americans (AA) compared with Caucasian Americans (CA). Host genetic variability near the interleukin-28B (IL28B) gene locus is partly responsible. We investigated the relationship between ribavirin drug exposure and week 24 and 72 (sustained virologic response, SVR) responses (undetected serum HCV RNA) in 71 AA and 74 CA with HCV genotype 1 who received >90% of the prescribed peginterferon and weight-based ribavirin (1,000 or 1,200 mg per day) from week 1 to 24. Methods: Ribavirin plasma levels were measured at weeks 1, 2, 4, 8, 12 and 24; ribavirin area under the concentration vs. time curve (AUC) was calculated using the linear trapezoidal rule. Results: Compared with CA, AA had lower week 24 (WK24VR) (57.8 vs. 78.1; P<0.05) and week 72 (SVR) (36.6% vs 54.8%; P<0.05) response rates. AA also had significantly lower ribavirin exposure (AUC) from week 1 to 12 (P<0.05). Ribavirin exposures ≥4,065 and ≥4,480 ng/ml/day in the first week (AUC(0-7)) were thresholds for WK24VR and SVR in receiver-operating characteristic curve analyses. AA were less likely to have a threshold ribavirin AUC(0-7) level than CA (P<0.05). There were no significant racial differences in WK24VR (AA: 77 vs. CA: 84%) and SVR (AA: 52 vs. CA: 60%) rates in patients who met the ribavirin AUC(0-7) thresholds. Ribavirin AUC(0-7) predicted WK24VR and SVR independently of IL28B single-nucleotide polymorphism rs12979860 genotype. Yet, achieving threshold AUC(0-7) levels increased response rates primarily in AA with the less favorable non-C/C genotypes. Conclusions: Standard weight-based dosing leads to suboptimal ribavirin exposure in AA and contributes to the racial disparity in peginterferon and ribavirin treatment efficacy for HCV genotype 1.
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