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Journal Highlights

JPET Highlight: Modeling Human Myocardium Exposure to Doxorubicin Defines the Risk of Heart Failure from Low-Dose Doxorubicin

Posted on 7/12/2017 2:32:26 PM

JPET August Highlight Salvatorelli et al 

The antitumor anthracycline, doxorubicin (DOX), can cause heart failure (HF) upon cumulative administration. Lowering the cumulative dose of DOX proved useful to minimize HF risk, and, yet, there is a growing concern that HF might occur after doses that were thought to be safe. Clinical trials that prospectively address such concerns are lacking. Because HF risk correlates with cardiac exposure to DOX, cumulative doses associated with HF risk were re-explored by modeling the accumulation of anthracycline pools in human myocardium. Ex vivo myocardial samples were used in vitro to simulate DOX rapid infusions. The accumulation of anthracycline pools was measured and incorporated into equations from which a risk versus dose curve was obtained. The experimental curve identified a 5% risk dose that was congruent with a previously reported clinical value (380 versus 400 mg/m2, respectively); however, 1–2% risk occurred after lower doses than reported. Simulations of gain-of-function polymorphism of carbonyl reductase 3, which converts DOX to its poorly diffusible alcohol metabolite, doxorubicinol (DOXOL), expanded anthracycline pools and caused 5% or 1–2% risk doses to decrease to 330 or 180–230 mg DOX/m2, respectively. These data show there is no safe dose of DOX. Diminishing cardiac exposure to circulating DOX may represent a cardioprotective strategy. We show that DOX slow infusions or liposomal DOX, which reduce cardiac exposure to DOX, caused formation of smaller anthracycline pools, did not generate DOXOL, increased the 5% risk dose to 750–800 mg/m2, and prevented HF risk aggravation by carbonyl reductase polymorphism.

See the article by Salvatorelli et al. at Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics August 2017, 362 (2) 263-270; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1124/jpet.117.242388 

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