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Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2013 May;69(5):1157-62. doi: 10.1007/s00228-012-1456-6. Epub 2012 Nov 30.

Bioequivalence between generic tacrolimus products marketed in Spain by adjusted indirect comparison.

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División de Farmacología y Evaluación Clínica, Departamento de Medicamentos de Uso Humano, Agencia Española de Medicamentos y Productos Sanitarios, C/Campezo 1. Edificio 8, Planta 2 Oeste, 28022 Madrid, Spain.



The objective of the study was to investigate the relative bioavailability between the generic tacrolimus products that are presently authorized in Spain by adjusted indirect comparison. This was based on demonstration of bioequivalence with the reference product (Prograf, Astellas Pharma), which makes these generic tacrolimus products prescribable, switchable and therapeutically equivalent to the reference product; yet, according to Spanish legislation, only prescribers can switch tacrolimus-containing products.


Data from independent bioequivalence studies that compare each generic product with the reference product were combined by adjusted indirect comparisons to investigate the relative bioavailability between generic drug products, since there is no direct bioequivalence study comparing generics to each other.


Eight generic tacrolimus products in the form of capsules are presently authorized in Spain, but only five are marketed. These eight products represent only three different generic product developments. One product is authorized with four different names/companies, while another is authorized under three different names/companies. The adjusted indirect comparisons between generic products show bioequivalence within the conventional 80-125 % confidence interval acceptance criteria for area under the curve (AUC) and maximum concentration (Cmax).


Not only are the generic products bioequivalent with the reference product, but also with each other.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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