Send to

Choose Destination
Clin Pharmacokinet. 2012 Apr 1;51(4):247-60. doi: 10.2165/11598090-000000000-00000.

Population pharmacokinetic analysis of denosumab in patients with bone metastases from solid tumours.

Author information

QuantPharm LLC, North Potomac, MD, USA.



Denosumab (XGEVA®; AMG 162) is a fully human IgG2 monoclonal antibody, which binds to the receptor activator of nuclear factor κ-B ligand (RANKL) and prevents terminal differentiation, activation and survival of osteoclasts. We aimed to characterize the population pharmacokinetics of denosumab in patients with advanced solid tumours and bone metastases.


A total of 14 228 free serum concentrations of denosumab from 1076 subjects (495 healthy subjects and 581 advanced cancer patients with solid tumours and bone metastases) included in 14 clinical studies were pooled. Denosumab was administered as either single intravenous (n = 36), single subcutaneous (n = 490) or multiple subcutaneous doses (n = 550) ranging from 30 to 180 mg (or from 0.01 to 3 mg/kg) and was given every 4 or 12 weeks for up to 3 years. An open two-compartment pharmacokinetic model with first-order absorption, linear distribution to a peripheral compartment, linear clearance and quasi-steady-state approximation of the target-mediated drug disposition was used to describe denosumab pharmacokinetics, using NONMEM Version 7.1.0 software. The influence of covariates (body weight, age, race, tumour type) was investigated using the full model approach. Model evaluation was performed through visual predictive checks. Model-based simulations were conducted to explore the role of covariates on denosumab serum concentrations and inferred RANKL occupancy.


After subcutaneous administration, the dose-independent bioavailability and mean absorption half-life of denosumab were estimated to be 61% and 2.7 days, respectively. The central volume of distribution and linear clearance were 2.62 L/66 kg and 3.25 mL/h/66 kg, respectively. Clearance and volume parameters were proportional to body weight. Assuming 1 : 1 denosumab-RANKL binding, the baseline RANKL level, quasi-steady-state constant and RANKL degradation rate were inferred to be 4.46 nmol/L, 208 ng/mL and 0.00116 h-1, respectively. Between-subject variability in model parameters was moderate. Following 120 mg dosing every 4 weeks, the inferred RANKL occupancy at steady state exceeded 97% during the entire dosing interval in more than 95% of subjects, regardless of the patient covariates.


The integration of pharmacokinetic data from 14 clinical studies demonstrated denosumab RANKL-mediated pharmacokinetics. Pharmacokinetics-based dosage adjustments on the basis of body weight, age, race and tumour type are not necessary in patients with bone metastases from solid tumours.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center