Pregnancy Category C: The effect of Renagel on the absorption of vitamins and other nutrients has not been studied in pregnant women. Requirements for vitamins and other nutrients are increased in pregnancy. In pregnant rats given doses of Renagel during organogenesis, reduced or irregular ossification of fetal bones, probably due to a reduced absorption of fat-soluble vitamin D, occurred. In pregnant rabbits given oral doses of Renagel by gavage during organogenesis, an increase of early resorptions occurred. [See NONCLINICAL TOXICOLOGY (13.1)]
No Renagel treatment-related effects on labor and delivery were seen in animal studies. The effects of Renagel on labor and delivery in humans are not known. [See NONCLINICAL TOXICOLOGY (13.1)]
The safety and efficacy of Renagel has not been established in pediatric patients.
Clinical studies of Renagel did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. Other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients. In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should be cautious, usually starting at the low end of the dosing range.
Renagel has been given to normal healthy volunteers in doses of up to 14 grams per day for eight days with no adverse effects. Renagel has been given in average doses up to 13 grams per day to hemodialysis patients. There are no reports of overdosage with Renagel in patients. Since Renagel is not absorbed, the risk of systemic toxicity is low.
The active ingredient in Renagel Tablets is sevelamer hydrochloride, a polymeric amine that binds phosphate and is meant for oral administration. Sevelamer hydrochloride is poly(allylamine hydrochloride) crosslinked with epichlorohydrin in which forty percent of the amines are protonated. It is known chemically as poly(allylamine-co-N,N’-diallyl-1,3-diamino-2-hydroxypropane) hydrochloride. Sevelamer hydrochloride is hydrophilic, but insoluble in water. The structure is represented in Figure 1.
Figure 1. Chemical Structure of Sevelamer Hydrochloride
a, b = number of primary amine groups a + b = 9
c = number of crosslinking groups c = 1
n = fraction of protonated amines n = 0.4
m = large number to indicate extended polymer network
The primary amine groups shown in the structure are derived directly from poly(allylamine hydrochloride). The crosslinking groups consist of two secondary amine groups derived from poly(allylamine hydrochloride) and one molecule of epichlorohydrin.
Renagel® Tablets: Each film-coated tablet of Renagel contains either 800 mg or 400 mg of sevelamer hydrochloride on an anhydrous basis. The inactive ingredients are hypromellose, diacetylated monoglyceride, colloidal silicon dioxide, and stearic acid. The tablet imprint contains iron oxide black ink.
Patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) on dialysis retain phosphorus and can develop hyperphosphatemia. High serum phosphorus can precipitate serum calcium resulting in ectopic calcification. When the product of serum calcium and phosphorus concentrations (Ca x P) exceeds 55 mg2 /dL2 , there is an increased risk that ectopic calcification will occur. Hyperphosphatemia plays a role in the development of secondary hyperparathyroidism in renal insufficiency.
Treatment of hyperphosphatemia includes reduction in dietary intake of phosphate, inhibition of intestinal phosphate absorption with phosphate binders, and removal of phosphate with dialysis. Renagel taken with meals has been shown to decrease serum phosphorus concentrations in patients with CKD who are on dialysis.
Renagel contains sevelamer hydrochloride, a non-absorbed binding crosslinked polymer. It contains multiple amines separated by one carbon from the polymer backbone. These amines exist in a protonated form in the intestine and interact with phosphate molecules through ionic and hydrogen bonding. By binding phosphate in the dietary tract and decreasing absorption, sevelamer hydrochloride lowers the phosphate concentration in the serum.
In addition to effects on serum phosphate levels, sevelamer hydrochloride has been shown to bind bile acids in vitro and in vivo in experimental animal models. Bile acid binding by ion exchange resins is a well-established method of lowering blood cholesterol. Because sevelamer binds bile acids, it may interfere with normal fat absorption and thus may reduce absorption of fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D and K. In clinical trials of sevelamer hydrochloride, both the mean total and LDL cholesterol declined by 15-31%. This effect is observed after 2 weeks. Triglycerides, HDL cholesterol and albumin did not change.
A mass balance study using 14 C-sevelamer hydrochloride in 16 healthy male and female volunteers showed that sevelamer hydrochloride is not systemically absorbed. No absorption studies have been performed in patients with renal disease.
Standard lifetime carcinogenicity bioassays were conducted in mice and rats. Rats were given sevelamer hydrochloride by diet at 0.3, 1, or 3 g/kg/day. There was an increased incidence of urinary bladder transitional cell papilloma in male rats of the high dose group (human equivalent dose twice the maximum clinical trial dose of 13 g). Mice received dietary administration of sevelamer hydrochloride at doses of up to 9 g/kg/day (human equivalent dose 3 times the maximum clinical trial dose). There was no increased incidence of tumors observed in mice.
In an in vitro mammalian cytogenetic test with metabolic activation, sevelamer hydrochloride caused a statistically significant increase in the number of structural chromosome aberrations. Sevelamer hydrochloride was not mutagenic in the Ames bacterial mutation assay.
Sevelamer hydrochloride did not impair the fertility of male or female rats in a dietary administration study in which the females were treated from 14 days prior to mating through gestation and the males were treated for 28 days prior to mating. The highest dose in this study was 4.5 g/kg/day (human equivalent dose 3 times the maximum clinical trial dose of 13 g).
In pregnant rats given dietary doses of 0.5, 1.5 or 4.5 g/kg/day of sevelamer hydrochloride during organogenesis, reduced or irregular ossification of fetal bones, probably due to a reduced absorption of fat-soluble vitamin D, occurred in mid- and high-dose groups (human equivalent doses less than the maximum clinical trial dose of 13 g). In pregnant rabbits given oral doses of 100, 500 or 1000 mg/kg/day of sevelamer hydrochloride by gavage during organogenesis, an increase of early resorptions occurred in the high-dose group (human equivalent dose twice the maximum clinical trial dose).
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