Hypersensitivity Hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis, have been reported with or without known hypersensitivity to other 5-HT3 receptor antagonists. Patient Counseling Information See FDA-Approved Patient Labeling Instructions For Patients Patients should be advised to report to their physician all of their medical conditions, any pain, redness, or swelling in and around the infusion site [see ADVERSE REACTIONS]. Patients should be instructed to read the patient insert. Nonclinical Toxicology Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility In a 104-week carcinogenicity study in CD-1 mice, animals were treated with oral doses of palonosetron at 10, 30 and 60 mg/kg/day. Treatment with palonosetron was not tumorigenic. The highest tested dose produced a systemic exposure to palonosetron (Plasma AUC) of about 150 to 289 times the human exposure (AUC= 29.8 ng•h/mL) at the recommended intravenous dose of 0.25 mg. In a 104-week carcinogenicity study in Sprague-Dawley rats, male and female rats were treated with oral doses of 15, 30 and 60 mg/kg/day and 15, 45 and 90 mg/kg/day, respectively. The highest doses produced a systemic exposure to palonosetron (Plasma AUC) of 137 and 308 times the human exposure at the recommended dose. Treatment with palonosetron produced increased incidences of adrenal benign pheochromocytoma and combined benign and malignant pheochromocytoma, increased incidences of pancreatic Islet cell adenoma and combined adenoma and carcinoma and pituitary adenoma in male rats. In female rats, it produced hepatocellular adenoma and carcinoma and increased the incidences of thyroid C-cell adenoma and combined adenoma and carcinoma. Palonosetron was not genotoxic in the Ames test, the Chinese hamster ovarian cell (CHO/HGPRT) forward mutation test, the ex vivo hepatocyte unscheduled DNA synthesis (UDS) test or the mouse micronucleus test. It was, however, positive for clastogenic effects in the Chinese hamster ovarian (CHO) cell chromosomal aberration test. Palonosetron at oral doses up to 60 mg/kg/day (about 1894 times the recommended human intravenous dose based on body surface area) was found to have no effect on fertility and reproductive performance of male and female rats. Clinical Studies Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea And Vomiting Efficacy of single-dose palonosetron injection in preventing acute and delayed nausea and vomiting induced by both moderately and highly emetogenic chemotherapy was studied in three Phase 3 trials and one Phase 2 trial. In these double-blind studies, complete response rates (no emetic episodes and no rescue medication) and other efficacy parameters were assessed through at least 120 hours after administration of chemotherapy. The safety and efficacy of palonosetron in repeated courses of chemotherapy was also assessed. Moderately Emetogenic Chemotherapy Two Phase 3, double-blind trials involving 1132 patients compared single-dose I.V. ALOXI with either single-dose I.V. ondansetron (study 1) or dolasetron (study 2) given 30 minutes prior to moderately emetogenic chemotherapy including carboplatin, cisplatin ≤ 50 mg/m², cyclophosphamide < 1500 mg/m², doxorubicin > 25 mg/m², epirubicin, irinotecan, and methotrexate > 250 mg/m². Concomitant corticosteroids were not administered prophylactically in study 1 and were only used by 4-6% of patients in study 2. The majority of patients in these studies were women (77%), White (65%) and naïve to previous chemotherapy (54%). The mean age was 55 years. Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy A Phase 2, double-blind, dose-ranging study evaluated the efficacy of single-dose I.V. palonosetron from 0.3 to 90 mcg/kg (equivalent to < 0.1 mg to 6 mg fixed dose) in 161 chemotherapy-naïve adult cancer patients receiving highly-emetogenic chemotherapy (either cisplatin ≥ 70 mg/m² or cyclophosphamide > 1100 mg/m²). Concomitant corticosteroids were not administered prophylactically. Analysis of data from this trial indicates that 0.25 mg is the lowest effective dose in preventing acute nausea and vomiting induced by highly emetogenic chemotherapy. A Phase 3, double-blind trial involving 667 patients compared single-dose I.V. ALOXI with single-dose I.V. ondansetron (study 3) given 30 minutes prior to highly emetogenic chemotherapy including cisplatin ≥ 60 mg/m², cyclophosphamide > 1500 mg/m², and dacarbazine. Corticosteroids were co-administered prophylactically before chemotherapy in 67% of patients. Of the 667 patients, 51% were women, 60% White, and 59% naïve to previous chemotherapy. The mean age was 52 years. Efficacy Results The antiemetic activity of ALOXI was evaluated during the acute phase (0-24 hours) [Table 3], delayed phase (24-120 hours) [Table 4], and overall phase (0-120 hours) [Table 5] post-chemotherapy in Phase 3 trials. Table 3: Prevention of Acute Nausea and Vomiting (0-24 hours): Complete Response Rates
Chemotherapy Study Treatment Group Za % with Complete Response p-value b 97.5% Confidence Interval ALOXI minus Comparator c Moderately Emetogenic 1 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 81 0.009 Ondansetron 32 mg I.V. 185 69 2 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 63 NS Dolasetron 100 mg I.V. 191 53 Highly Emetogenic 3 ALOXI 0.25 mg 223 59 NS Ondansetron 32 mg I.V. 221 57 a Intent-to-treat cohort
b 2-sided Fisher's exact test. Significance level at α=0.025.
c These studies were designed to show non-inferiority. A lower bound greater than –15% demonstrates non-inferiority between ALOXI and comparator. These studies show that ALOXI was effective in the prevention of acute nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of moderately and highly emetogenic cancer chemotherapy. In study 3, efficacy was greater when prophylactic corticosteroids were administered concomitantly. Clinical superiority over other 5-HT3 receptor antagonists has not been adequately demonstrated in the acute phase. Table 4: Prevention of Delayed Nausea and Vomiting (24-120 hours): Complete Response Rates
Chemotherapy Study Treatment Group Za % with Complete Response p-value b 97.5% Confidence Interval ALOXI minus Comparator c Moderately Emetogenic 1 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 74 < 0.001 Ondansetron 32 mg I.V. 185 55 2 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 54 0.004 Dolasetron 100 mg I.V. 191 39 a Intent-to-treat cohort
b 2-sided Fisher's exact test. Significance level at α=0.025.
c These studies were designed to show non-inferiority. A lower bound greater than –15% demonstrates non-inferiority between ALOXI and comparator. These studies show that ALOXI was effective in the prevention of delayed nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of moderately emetogenic chemotherapy. Table 5: Prevention of Overall Nausea and Vomiting (0-120 hours): Complete Response Rates
Chemotherapy Study Treatment Group Za % with Complete Response p-value b 97.5% Confidence Interval ALOXI minus Comparatorc Moderately Emetogenic 1 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 69 < 0.001 Ondansetron 32 mg I.V. 185 50 2 ALOXI 0.25 mg 189 46 0.021 Dolasetron 100 mg I.V. 191 34 a Intent-to-treat cohort
b 2-sided Fisher's exact test. Significance level at α=0.025.
c These studies were designed to show non-inferiority. A lower bound greater than –15% demonstrates non-inferiority between ALOXI and comparator. These studies show that ALOXI was effective in the prevention of nausea and vomiting throughout the 120 hours (5 days) following initial and repeat courses of moderately emetogenic cancer chemotherapy. Postoperative Nausea And Vomiting In one multicenter, randomized, stratified, double-blind, parallel-group, phase 3 clinical study (Study 1), palonosetron was compared with placebo for the prevention of PONV in 546 patients undergoing abdominal and gynecological surgery. All patients received general anesthesia. Study 1 was a pivotal study conducted predominantly in the US in the out-patient setting for patients undergoing elective gynecologic or abdominal laparoscopic surgery and stratified at randomization for the following risk factors: gender, non-smoking status, history of post operative nausea and vomiting and/or motion sickness. In Study 1 patients were randomized to receive palonosetron 0.025 mg, 0.050 mg or 0.075 mg or placebo, each given intravenously immediately prior to induction of anesthesia. The antiemetic activity of palonosetron was evaluated during the 0 to 72 hour time period after surgery. Of the 138 patients treated with 0.075 mg palonosetron in Study 1 and evaluated for efficacy, 96% were women; 66% had a history of PONV or motion sickness; 85% were non-smokers. As for race, 63% were White, 20% were Black, 15% were Hispanic, and 1% were Asian. The age of patients ranged from 21 to 74 years, with a mean age of 37.9 years. Three patients were greater than 65 years of age. Co-primary efficacy measures were Complete Response (CR) defined as no emetic episode and no use of rescue medication in the 0-24 and in the 24-72 hours postoperatively. Secondary efficacy endpoints included:
- Complete Response (CR) 0-48 and 0-72 hours
- Complete Control (CC) defined as CR and no more than mild nausea
- Severity of nausea (none, mild, moderate, severe)
The primary hypothesis in Study 1 was that at least one of the three palonosetron doses were superior to placebo. Results for Complete Response in Study 1 for 0.075 mg palonosetron versus placebo are described in the following table. Table 6: Prevention of Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting: Complete Response (CR), Study 1, Palonosetron 0.075 mg Vs Placebo
T reatment n/N (%) Palonosetron Vs Placebo Δ p-value* Co-primary Endpoints CR 0-24 hours Palonosetron 59/138 (42.8%) 16.8% 0.004 Placebo 35/135 (25.9%) CR 24-72 hours Palonosetron 67/138 (48.6%) 7.8%| 0.188 Placebo 55/135 (40.7%) * To reach statistical significance for each co-primary endpoint, the required significance limit for the lowest p-value was p < 0.017.
Δ Difference (%): palonosetron 0.075 mg minus placebo Palonosetron 0.075 mg reduced the severity of nausea compared to placebo. Analyses of other secondary endpoints indicate that palonosetron 0.075 mg was numerically better than placebo, however, statistical significance was not formally demonstrated. A phase 2 randomized, double-blind, multicenter, placebo-controlled, dose ranging study was performed to evaluate I.V. palonosetron for the prevention of post-operative nausea and vomiting following abdominal or vaginal hysterectomy. Five I.V. palonosetron doses (0.1, 0.3, 1.0, 3.0 and 30 μg/kg) were evaluated in a total of 381 intent-to-treat patients. The primary efficacy measure was the proportion of patients with CR in the first 24 hours after recovery from surgery. The lowest effective dose was palonosetron 1 μg/kg (approximately 0.075 mg) which had a CR rate of 44% versus 19% for placebo, p=0.004. Palonosetron 1 μg/kg also significantly reduced the severity of nausea versus placebo, p=0.009. Use In Specific Populations Pregnancy Teratogenic Effects - Category B Teratology studies have been performed in rats at oral doses up to 60 mg/kg/day (1894 times the recommended human intravenous dose based on body surface area) and rabbits at oral doses up to 60 mg/kg/day (3789 times the recommended human intravenous dose based on body surface area) and have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility or harm to the fetus due to palonosetron. There are, however, no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, palonosetron should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. Labor And Delivery Palonosetron has not been administered to patients undergoing labor and delivery, so its effects on the mother or child are unknown. Nursing Mothers It is not known whether palonosetron is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants and the potential for tumorigenicity shown for palonosetron in the rat carcinogenicity study, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother. Pediatric Use Safety and effectiveness in patients below the age of 18 years have not been established. Geriatric Use Population pharmacokinetics analysis did not reveal any differences in palonosetron pharmacokinetics between cancer patients ≥ 65 years of age and younger patients (18 to 64 years). Of the 1374 adult cancer patients in clinical studies of palonosetron, 316 (23%) were ≥ 65 years old, while 71 (5%) were ≥ 75 years old. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these subjects and the younger subjects, but greater sensitivity in some older individuals cannot be ruled out. No dose adjustment or special monitoring are required for geriatric patients. Of the 1520 adult patients in Aloxi PONV clinical studies, 73 (5%) were ≥ 65 years old. No overall differences in safety were observed between older and younger subjects in these studies, though the possibility of heightened sensitivity in some older individuals cannot be excluded. No differences in efficacy were observed in geriatric patients for the CINV indication and none are expected for geriatric PONV patients. However, Aloxi efficacy in geriatric patients has not been adequately evaluated. Renal Impairment Mild to moderate renal impairment does not significantly affect palonosetron pharmacokinetic parameters. Total systemic exposure increased by approximately 28% in severe renal impairment relative to healthy subjects. Dosage adjustment is not necessary in patients with any degree of renal impairment. Hepatic Impairment Hepatic impairment does not significantly affect total body clearance of palonosetron compared to the healthy subjects. Dosage adjustment is not necessary in patients with any degree of hepatic impairment. Race Intravenous palonosetron pharmacokinetics was characterized in twenty-four healthy Japanese subjects over the dose range of 3 – 90 mcg/kg. Total body clearance was 25% higher in Japanese subjects compared to Whites, however, no dose adjustment is required. The pharmacokinetics of palonosetron in Blacks has not been adequately characterized. Last reviewed on RxList: 2/18/2014
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.