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PROTONIX® (pantoprazole sodium) Clinical Pharmacology

12 CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY

12.1 Mechanism of Action

Pantoprazole is a PPI that suppresses the final step in gastric acid production by covalently binding to the (H+, K+)-ATPase enzyme system at the secretory surface of the gastric parietal cell. This effect leads to inhibition of both basal and stimulated gastric acid secretion, irrespective of the stimulus. The binding to the (H+, K+)-ATPase results in a duration of antisecretory effect that persists longer than 24 hours for all doses tested (20 mg to 120 mg).

12.2 Pharmacodynamics

PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension, 40 mg has been shown to be comparable to PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets in suppressing pentagastrin-stimulated MAO in patients (n = 49) with GERD and a history of EE. In this multicenter, pharmacodynamic crossover study, a 40 mg oral dose of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension administered in a teaspoonful of applesauce was compared with a 40 mg oral dose of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets after administration of each formulation once daily for 7 days. Both medications were administered thirty minutes before breakfast. Pentagastrin-stimulated (MAO) was assessed from hour 23 to 24 at steady state.

Antisecretory Activity

Under maximal acid stimulatory conditions using pentagastrin, a dose-dependent decrease in gastric acid output occurs after a single dose of oral (20–80 mg) or a single dose of intravenous (20–120 mg) pantoprazole in healthy subjects. Pantoprazole given once daily results in increasing inhibition of gastric acid secretion. Following the initial oral dose of 40 mg pantoprazole, a 51% mean inhibition was achieved by 2.5 hours. With once-a-day dosing for 7 days, the mean inhibition was increased to 85%. Pantoprazole suppressed acid secretion in excess of 95% in half of the subjects. Acid secretion had returned to normal within a week after the last dose of pantoprazole; there was no evidence of rebound hypersecretion.

In a series of dose-response studies, pantoprazole, at oral doses ranging from 20 to 120 mg, caused dose-related increases in median basal gastric pH and in the percent of time gastric pH was >3 and >4. Treatment with 40 mg of pantoprazole produced significantly greater increases in gastric pH than the 20 mg dose. Doses higher than 40 mg (60, 80, 120 mg) did not result in further significant increases in median gastric pH. The effects of pantoprazole on median pH from one double-blind crossover study are shown in Table 5.

Table 5: Effect of Single Daily Doses of Oral Pantoprazole on Intragastric pH
Median pH on day 7
Time Placebo 20 mg 40 mg 80 mg
*
Significantly different from placebo
Significantly different from 20 mg
8 a.m. – 8 a.m. (24 hours) 1.3 2.9* 3.8* 3.9*
8 a.m. – 10 p.m. (Daytime) 1.6 3.2* 4.4* 4.8*
10 p.m. – 8 a.m. (Nighttime) 1.2 2.1* 3.0* 2.6*

Serum Gastrin Effects

Fasting serum gastrin levels were assessed in two double-blind studies of the acute healing of EE in which 682 patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) received 10, 20, or 40 mg of PROTONIX for up to 8 weeks. At 4 weeks of treatment there was an increase in mean gastrin levels of 7%, 35%, and 72% over pretreatment values in the 10, 20, and 40 mg treatment groups, respectively. A similar increase in serum gastrin levels was noted at the 8-week visit with mean increases of 3%, 26%, and 84% for the three pantoprazole dose groups. Median serum gastrin levels remained within normal limits during maintenance therapy with PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets.

In long-term international studies involving over 800 patients, a 2- to 3-fold mean increase from the pretreatment fasting serum gastrin level was observed in the initial months of treatment with pantoprazole at doses of 40 mg per day during GERD maintenance studies and 40 mg or higher per day in patients with refractory GERD. Fasting serum gastrin levels generally remained at approximately 2 to 3 times baseline for up to 4 years of periodic follow-up in clinical trials.

Following short-term treatment with PROTONIX, elevated gastrin levels return to normal by at least 3 months.

Enterochromaffin-Like (ECL) Cell Effects

In 39 patients treated with oral pantoprazole 40 mg to 240 mg daily (majority receiving 40 mg to 80 mg) for up to 5 years, there was a moderate increase in ECL-cell density, starting after the first year of use, which appeared to plateau after 4 years.

In a nonclinical study in Sprague-Dawley rats, lifetime exposure (24 months) to pantoprazole at doses of 0.5 to 200 mg/kg/day resulted in dose-related increases in gastric ECL-cell proliferation and gastric neuroendocrine (NE)-cell tumors. Gastric NE-cell tumors in rats may result from chronic elevation of serum gastrin concentrations. The high density of ECL cells in the rat stomach makes this species highly susceptible to the proliferative effects of elevated gastrin concentrations produced by PPIs. However, there were no observed elevations in serum gastrin following the administration of pantoprazole at a dose of 0.5 mg/kg/day. In a separate study, a gastric NE-cell tumor without concomitant ECL-cell proliferative changes was observed in 1 female rat following 12 months of dosing with pantoprazole at 5 mg/kg/day and a 9 month off-dose recovery [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)].

Endocrine Effects

In a clinical pharmacology study, PROTONIX 40 mg given once daily for 2 weeks had no effect on the levels of the following hormones: cortisol, testosterone, triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), thyronine-binding protein, parathyroid hormone, insulin, glucagon, renin, aldosterone, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, prolactin, and growth hormone.

In a 1-year study of GERD patients treated with PROTONIX 40 mg or 20 mg, there were no changes from baseline in overall levels of T3, T4, and TSH.

12.3 Pharmacokinetics

PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets are prepared as enteric-coated tablets so that absorption of pantoprazole begins only after the tablet leaves the stomach. Peak serum concentration (Cmax) and area under the serum concentration time curve (AUC) increase in a manner proportional to oral and intravenous doses from 10 mg to 80 mg. Pantoprazole does not accumulate, and its pharmacokinetics are unaltered with multiple daily dosing. Following oral or intravenous administration, the serum concentration of pantoprazole declines biexponentially, with a terminal elimination half-life of approximately one hour.

In extensive metabolizers with normal liver function receiving an oral dose of the enteric-coated 40 mg pantoprazole tablet, the peak concentration (Cmax) is 2.5 μg/mL; the time to reach the peak concentration (tmax) is 2.5 h, and the mean total area under the plasma concentration versus time curve (AUC) is 4.8 μg∙h/mL (range 1.4 to 13.3 μg∙h/mL). Following intravenous administration of pantoprazole to extensive metabolizers, its total clearance is 7.6–14.0 L/h, and its apparent volume of distribution is 11.0–23.6 L.

A single oral dose of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension, 40 mg, was shown to be bioequivalent when administered to healthy subjects (N = 22) as granules sprinkled over a teaspoonful of applesauce, as granules mixed with apple juice, or mixed with apple juice followed by administration through a nasogastric tube. The plasma pharmacokinetic parameters from a crossover study in healthy subjects are summarized in Table 6.

Table 6: Pharmacokinetics Parameters (mean ± SD) of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension at 40 mg
Pharmacokinetic Parameters Granules in Applesauce Granules in Apple Juice Granules in Nasogastric Tube
*
Median values are reported for Tmax.
AUC (µg∙hr/mL) 4.0 ± 1.5 4.0 ± 1.5 4.1 ± 1.7
Cmax (µg/mL) 2.0 ± 0.7 1.9 ± 0.5 2.2 ± 0.7
Tmax (hr)* 2.0 2.5 2.0

Absorption

After administration of a single or multiple oral 40 mg doses of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets, the peak plasma concentration of pantoprazole was achieved in approximately 2.5 hours, and Cmax was 2.5 μg/mL. Pantoprazole undergoes little first-pass metabolism, resulting in an absolute bioavailability of approximately 77%. Pantoprazole absorption is not affected by concomitant administration of antacids.

Administration of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets with food may delay its absorption up to 2 hours or longer; however, the Cmax and the extent of pantoprazole absorption (AUC) are not altered. Thus, PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets may be taken without regard to timing of meals.

Administration of pantoprazole granules, 40 mg, with a high-fat meal delayed median time to peak plasma concentration by 2 hours. With a concomitant high-fat meal, the Cmax and AUC of pantoprazole granules, 40 mg, sprinkled on applesauce decreased by 51% and 29%, respectively. Thus, PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension should be taken approximately 30 minutes before a meal.

Distribution

The apparent volume of distribution of pantoprazole is approximately 11 to 23.6 L, distributing mainly in extracellular fluid. The serum protein binding of pantoprazole is about 98%, primarily to albumin.

Elimination

Metabolism

Pantoprazole is extensively metabolized in the liver through the cytochrome P450 (CYP) system. Pantoprazole metabolism is independent of the route of administration (intravenous or oral). The main metabolic pathway is demethylation, by CYP2C19, with subsequent sulfation; other metabolic pathways include oxidation by CYP3A4. There is no evidence that any of the pantoprazole metabolites have significant pharmacologic activity.

Excretion

After a single oral or intravenous dose of 14C-labeled pantoprazole to healthy, normal metabolizer subjects, approximately 71% of the dose was excreted in the urine, with 18% excreted in the feces through biliary excretion. There was no renal excretion of unchanged pantoprazole.

Specific Populations

Geriatric Patients

Only slight to moderate increases in the AUC (43%) and Cmax (26%) of pantoprazole were found in elderly subjects (64 to 76 years of age) after repeated oral administration, compared with younger subjects [see Use in Specific Populations (8.5)].

Pediatric Patients

The pharmacokinetics of pantoprazole were studied in children less than 16 years of age in four randomized, open-label clinical trials in pediatric patients with presumed/proven GERD. A pediatric granule formulation was studied in children through 5 years of age, and PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets were studied in children older than 5 years.

In a population PK analysis, total clearance increased with increasing bodyweight in a non-linear fashion. The total clearance also increased with increasing age only in children under 3 years of age.

Neonate through 5 Years of Age

[see Use in Specific Populations (8.4)]

Children and Adolescents 6 through 16 Years of Age

The pharmacokinetics of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets were evaluated in children ages 6 through 16 years with a clinical diagnosis of GERD. The PK parameters following a single oral dose of 20 mg or 40 mg of PROTONIX tablets in children ages 6 through 16 years were highly variable (%CV ranges 40 to 80%). The geometric mean AUC estimated from population PK analysis after a 40 mg PROTONIX tablet in pediatric patients was about 39% and 10% higher respectively in 6 to 11 and 12 to 16 year-old children, compared to that of adults (Table 7).

Table 7: PK Parameters in Children and Adolescents 6 through 16 years with GERD receiving 40 mg PROTONIX Tablets
6–11 years (n=12) 12–16 years (n=11)
*
Geometric mean values
Median values
Cmax (µg/mL)* 1.8 1.8
tmax (h) 2.0 2.0
AUC (µg∙h/mL)* 6.9 5.5
CL/F (L/h) 6.6 6.8

Male and Female Patients

There is a modest increase in pantoprazole AUC and Cmax in women compared to men. However, weight-normalized clearance values are similar in women and men.

In pediatric patients ages 1 through 16 years there were no clinically relevant effects of gender on clearance of pantoprazole, as shown by population pharmacokinetic analysis.

Patients with Renal Impairment

In patients with severe renal impairment, pharmacokinetic parameters for pantoprazole were similar to those of healthy subjects.

Patients with Hepatic Impairment

In patients with mild to severe hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh A to C cirrhosis), maximum pantoprazole concentrations increased only slightly (1.5-fold) relative to healthy subjects. Although serum half-life values increased to 7–9 hours and AUC values increased by 5- to 7-fold in hepatic-impaired patients, these increases were no greater than those observed in CYP2C19 poor metabolizers, where no dosage adjustment is warranted. These pharmacokinetic changes in hepatic-impaired patients result in minimal drug accumulation following once-daily, multiple-dose administration. Doses higher than 40 mg/day have not been studied in hepatically impaired patients.

Drug Interaction Studies

Effect of Other Drugs on Pantoprazole

Pantoprazole is metabolized mainly by CYP2C19 and to minor extents by CYPs 3A4, 2D6, and 2C9. In in vivo drug-drug interaction studies with CYP2C19 substrates (diazepam [also a CYP3A4 substrate] and phenytoin [also a CYP3A4 inducer] and clopidogrel), nifedipine, midazolam, and clarithromycin (CYP3A4 substrates), metoprolol (a CYP2D6 substrate), diclofenac, naproxen and piroxicam (CYP2C9 substrates), and theophylline (a CYP1A2 substrate) in healthy subjects, the pharmacokinetics of pantoprazole were not significantly altered.

Effect of Pantoprazole on Other Drugs

Clopidogrel

Clopidogrel is metabolized to its active metabolite in part by CYP2C19. In a crossover clinical study, 66 healthy subjects were administered clopidogrel (300 mg loading dose followed by 75 mg per day) alone and with pantoprazole (80 mg at the same time as clopidogrel) for 5 days. On Day 5, the mean AUC of the active metabolite of clopidogrel was reduced by approximately 14% (geometric mean ratio was 86%, with 90% CI of 79 to 93%) when pantoprazole was coadministered with clopidogrel as compared to clopidogrel administered alone. Pharmacodynamic parameters were also measured and demonstrated that the change in inhibition of platelet aggregation (induced by 5 µM ADP) was correlated with the change in the exposure to clopidogrel active metabolite. The clinical significance of this finding is not clear.

Mycophenolate Mofetil (MMF)

Administration of pantoprazole 40 mg twice daily for 4 days and a single 1000 mg dose of MMF approximately one hour after the last dose of pantoprazole to 12 healthy subjects in a cross-over study resulted in a 57% reduction in the Cmax and 27% reduction in the AUC of MPA. Transplant patients receiving approximately 2000 mg per day of MMF (n=12) were compared to transplant patients receiving approximately the same dose of MMF and pantoprazole 40 mg per day (n=21). There was a 78% reduction in the Cmax and a 45% reduction in the AUC of MPA in patients receiving both pantoprazole and MMF [see Drug Interactions (7)].

Other Drugs

In vivo studies also suggest that pantoprazole does not significantly affect the kinetics of the following drugs (cisapride, theophylline, diazepam [and its active metabolite, desmethyldiazepam], phenytoin, metoprolol, nifedipine, carbamazepine, midazolam, clarithromycin, diclofenac, naproxen, piroxicam, and oral contraceptives [levonorgestrel/ethinyl estradiol]). In other in vivo studies, digoxin, ethanol, glyburide, antipyrine, caffeine, metronidazole, and amoxicillin had no clinically relevant interactions with pantoprazole.

Although no significant drug-drug interactions have been observed in clinical studies, the potential for significant drug-drug interactions with more than once-daily dosing with high doses of pantoprazole has not been studied in poor metabolizers or individuals who are hepatically impaired.

Antacids

There was also no interaction with concomitantly administered antacids.

12.5 Pharmacogenomics

CYP2C19 displays a known genetic polymorphism due to its deficiency in some subpopulations (e.g., approximately 3% of Caucasians and African-Americans and 17% to 23% of Asians are poor metabolizers). Although these subpopulations of pantoprazole poor metabolizers have elimination half-life values of 3.5 to 10 hours in adults, they still have minimal accumulation (23% or less) with once-daily dosing. For adult patients who are CYP2C19 poor metabolizers, no dosage adjustment is needed.

Similar to adults, pediatric patients who have the poor metabolizer genotype of CYP2C19 (CYP2C19 *2/*2) exhibited greater than a 6-fold increase in AUC compared to pediatric extensive (CYP2C19 *1/*1) and intermediate (CYP2C19 *1/*x) metabolizers. Poor metabolizers exhibited approximately 10-fold lower apparent oral clearance compared to extensive metabolizers.

For known pediatric poor metabolizers, a dose reduction should be considered.

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