Pharmacokinetic comparison of inhaled fixed combination vs. the free combination of beclomethasone and formoterol pMDIs in asthmatic children

Bo L K Chawes, Annalisa Piccinno, Eskil Kreiner-Møller, Nadja H Vissing, Porntiva Poorisrisak, Li Mortensen, Erik Nilson, Amalie Bisgaard, Anna Dossing, Maja Deleuran, Nanna L Skytt, Nasim Samandari, Francesco Sergio, Giorgia Ciurlia, Gianluigi Poli, Daniela Acerbi, Hans Bisgaard
British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology 2013, 75 (4): 1081-8

AIM: The fixed combination of beclomethasone (BDP) and formoterol pressurized metered dose inhaler (pMDI) (Foster®, Chiesi Farmaceutici) is being developed in the lower strength (BDP/formoterol: 50/6 μg) to provide an appropriate dosage for children with asthma. The aim of this work was to investigate the systemic bioavailability of beclomethasone-17-monoproprionate (B17MP, the active metabolite of BDP) and formoterol after single inhalation of Foster® pMDI 50/6 μg vs. the free combination of BDP and formoterol pMDIs in asthmatic children.

METHODS: Children aged 5-11 years old inhaled BDP 200 μg and formoterol 24 μg as fixed vs. free combination in an open label, randomized, two way crossover single dose study. Blood was collected pre-dose up to 8 h post-dose for pharmacokinetic evaluation (AUC(0,t), AUC(0,∞), AUC(0,0.5 h, Cmax , tmax , t1/2 ). Pharmacodynamics included heart rate, plasma potassium, urinary glucose and cortisol excretion. Peak expiratory flow and adverse events were monitored.

RESULTS: Twenty subjects were evaluable. The systemic exposure of B17MP and formoterol administered as fixed combination did not exceed the free combination: B17MP AUC(0,t) (pg ml(-1)  h) ratio test : reference (90% CI), 0.81 (0.697, 0.948) and formoterol AUC(0,t) (pg ml(-1)  h) ratio test : reference 0.97 (0.85, 1.10). All pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic end points showed non-superiority in favour of the test drug. One adverse event (vertigo) occurred but was not considered treatment-related.

CONCLUSION: BDP and formoterol pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic effects are non-superior after administration of the two actives as fixed vs. the free combination in 5-11-year-old asthmatic children.

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