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Eur J Pharm Sci. 2005 Apr;24(5):465-75.

Mixed-effects modelling of the interspecies pharmacokinetic scaling of pegylated human erythropoietin.

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Advanced PKPD Modeling and Simulation Department, Global Clinical Pharmacokinetics and Clinical Pharmacology, 2340 Beerse, Belgium.


The aim of this study was to develop a population pharmacokinetic model for interspecies allometric scaling of pegylated r-HuEPO (PEG-EPO) pharmacokinetics to man. A total of 927 serum concentrations from 193 rats, 6 rabbits, 34 monkeys, and 9 dogs obtained after a single dose of PEG-EPO, administered by the i.v. (dose range: 12.5-550 microg/kg) and s.c. (dose range: 12.5-500 microg/kg) routes, were pooled in this analysis. An open two-compartment model with first-order absorption and lag time (Tlag) and linear elimination from the central compartment was fitted to the data using the NONMEM V software. Body weight (WT) was used as a scaling factor and the effect of brain weight (BW), sex, and pregnancy status on the pharmacokinetic parameters was investigated. The final model was evaluated by means of a non-parametric bootstrap analysis and used to predict the PEG-EPO pharmacokinetic parameters in healthy male subjects. The systemic clearance (CL) in males was estimated to be 4.08WT1.030xBW-0.345 ml/h. In females, the CL was 90.7% of the CL in males. The volumes of the central (Vc) and the peripheral (Vp) compartment were characterized as 57.8WT0.959 ml, and 48.1WT1.150 ml, respectively. Intercompartmental flow was estimated at 2.32WT0.930 ml/h. Absorption rate constant (Ka) was estimated at 0.0538WT-0.149. The absolute s.c. bioavailability F was calculated at 52.5, 80.2, and 49.4% in rat, monkey, and dog, respectively. The interindividual variability in the population pharmacokinetic parameters was fairly low (<35%). Non-parametric bootstrap confirmed the accuracy of the NONMEM estimates. The mean model predicted pharmacokinetic parameters in healthy male subjects of 70 kg were estimated at: CL: 26.2 ml/h; Vc: 3.6l; Q: 286 l/h; Vp: 6.9l, and Ka: 0.031 h-1. The population pharmacokinetic model developed was appropriate to describe the time course of PEG-EPO serum concentrations and their variability in different species. The model predicted pharmacokinetics of PEG-EPO in humans suggest a less frequent dosing regimen relative to erythropoietin and darbepoetin, potentially leading to a simplification of anemia management.

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