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Toxicology. 2008 Jun 3;248(1):8-17. doi: 10.1016/j.tox.2008.03.002. Epub 2008 Mar 13.

Integration of in vivo and in vitro approaches to characterize the toxicity of Antalarmin, a corticotropin-releasing hormone receptor antagonist.

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  • 1IIT Research Institute, Chicago, IL 60616, USA.


Non-clinical studies were conducted to evaluate the toxicity of Antalarmin, a corticotropin-releasing hormone type 1 receptor antagonist being developed for therapy of stress-related pathologies. Antalarmin was not genotoxic in bacterial mutagenesis assays, mammalian cell mutagenesis assays, or in vivo DNA damage assays. In a 14-day range-finding study in rats, Antalarmin doses >or=500 mg/kg/day (3,000 mg/m(2)/day) induced mortality. In a 90-day toxicity study in rats, no gross toxicity was seen at doses of 30, 100, or 300 mg/kg/day (180, 600, or 1,800 mg/m(2)/day, respectively). Antalarmin (300 mg/kg/day) induced mild anemia, increases in serum gamma-glutamyl transferase activity, and microscopic hepatic pathology (bile duct hyperplasia and epithelial necrosis, periportal inflammation). Microscopic renal changes (cortical necrosis, inflammation, hypertrophy, nephropathy) were observed in rats at all Antalarmin doses. In a 14-day range-finding study in dogs, Antalarmin doses >or=50mg/kg/day (1,000 mg/m(2)/day) induced repeated emesis and bone marrow suppression. In a 90-day toxicity study in dogs, Antalarmin (4, 8, or 16 mg/kg/day (80, 160, or 320 mg/m(2)/day, respectively)) induced bone marrow and lymphoid depletion, but no gross toxicity. Comparative in vitro studies using rat, dog, and human neutrophil progenitors demonstrated that canine bone marrow cells are highly sensitive to Antalarmin cytotoxicity, while rat and human bone marrow cells are relatively insensitive. As such, the bone marrow toxicity observed in dogs is considered likely to over-predict Antalarmin toxicity in humans. The hepatic and renal toxicities seen in rats exposed to Antalarmin identify those tissues as the most likely targets for Antalarmin toxicity in humans.

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