Many medicines, including several cholesterol-lowering agents (eg, lovastatin, simvastatin), antihypertensives (eg, diltiazem, nifedipine, verapamil), and antifungals (eg, ketoconazole) are metabolized by and/or inhibit the cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A4 metabolic pathway. These types of medicines are commonly coprescribed to treat comorbidities in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and the potential for drug-drug interactions of these medicines with new medicines for T2DM must be carefully evaluated.
To investigate the effects of CYP3A4 substrates or inhibitors, simvastatin (substrate), diltiazem (moderate inhibitor), and ketoconazole (strong inhibitor) on the pharmacokinetics and safety of saxagliptin, a CYP3A4/5 substrate; and the effects of saxagliptin on these agents in three separate studies.
Healthy subjects were administered saxagliptin 10 mg or 100 mg. Simvastatin, diltiazem extended-release, and ketoconazole doses of 40 mg once daily, 360 mg once daily, and 200 mg twice daily, respectively, were used to determine two-way pharmacokinetic interactions.
Coadministration of simvastatin, diltiazem extended-release, or ketoconazole increased mean area under the concentration-time curve values (AUC) of saxagliptin by 12%, 109%, and 145%, respectively, versus saxagliptin alone. Mean exposure (AUC) of the CYP3A4-generated active metabolite of saxagliptin, 5-hydroxy saxagliptin, decreased with coadministration of simvastatin, diltiazem, and ketoconazole by 2%, 34%, and 88%, respectively. All adverse events were considered mild or moderate in all three studies; there were no serious adverse events or deaths.
Saxagliptin, when coadministered with simvastatin, diltiazem extended-release, or ketoconazole, was safe and generally well tolerated in healthy subjects. Clinically meaningful interactions of saxagliptin with simvastatin and diltiazem extended-release are not expected. The dose of saxagliptin does not need to be adjusted when coadministered with a substrate or moderate inhibitor of CYP3A4. A limitation to the lowest clinical dose of saxagliptin (2.5 mg) is proposed when it is coadministered with a potent CYP3A4 inhibitor such as ketoconazole.