Sumatriptan binds with high affinity to human cloned 5-HT 1B/1D receptors. Sumatriptan succinate presumably exerts its therapeutic effects in the treatment of migraine headache by binding to 5‑HT 1B/1D receptors located on intracranial blood vessels and sensory nerves of the trigeminal system.
Current theories proposed to explain the etiology of migraine headache suggest that symptoms are due to local cranial vasodilatation and/or to the release of sensory neuropeptides (including substance P and calcitonin gene-related peptide) through nerve endings in the trigeminal system. The therapeutic activity of sumatriptan succinate for the treatment of migraine and cluster headaches is thought to be due to the agonist effects at the 5-HT 1B/1D receptors on intracranial blood vessels (including the arterio-venous anastomoses) and sensory nerves of the trigeminal system, which result in cranial vessel constriction and inhibition of pro-inflammatory neuropeptide release.
Blood Pressure: Significant elevation in blood pressure, including hypertensive crisis, has been reported in patients with and without a history of hypertension [see Warnings and Precautions ( 5.8)] .
Peripheral (Small) Arteries: In healthy volunteers (N = 18), a trial evaluating the effects of sumatriptan on peripheral (small vessel) arterial reactivity failed to detect a clinically significant increase in peripheral resistance.
Heart Rate: Transient increases in blood pressure observed in some subjects in clinical trials carried out during sumatriptan’s development as a treatment for migraine were not accompanied by any clinically significant changes in heart rate.
Absorption and Bioavailability: The bioavailability of sumatriptan via subcutaneous site injection to 18 healthy male subjects was 97% ± 16% of that obtained following intravenous injection.
After a single 6 mg subcutaneous manual injection into the deltoid area of the arm in 18 healthy males (age: 24 ± 6 years, weight: 70 kg), the maximum serum concentration (C max ) of sumatriptan was (mean ± standard deviation) 74 ± 15 ng/mL and the time to peak concentration (T max ) was 12 minutes after injection (range: 5 to 20 minutes). In this trial, the same dose injected subcutaneously in the thigh gave a C max of 61 ± 15 ng/mL by manual injection versus 52 ± 15 ng/mL by autoinjector techniques. The T max or amount absorbed was not significantly altered by either the site or technique of injection.
Distribution: Protein binding, determined by equilibrium dialysis over the concentration range of 10 to 1,000 ng/mL, is low, approximately 14% to 21%. The effect of sumatriptan on the protein binding of other drugs has not been evaluated.
Following a 6 mg subcutaneous injection into the deltoid area of the arm in 9 males (mean age: 33 years, mean weight: 77 kg) the volume of distribution central compartment of sumatriptan was 50 ± 8 liters and the distribution half-life was 15 ± 2 minutes.
Metabolism: In vitro studies with human microsomes suggest that sumatriptan is metabolized by MAO, predominantly the A isoenzyme. Most of a radiolabeled dose of sumatriptan excreted in the urine is the major metabolite indole acetic acid (IAA) or the IAA glucuronide, both of which are inactive.
Elimination: After a single 6 mg subcutaneous dose, 22% ± 4% was excreted in the urine as unchanged sumatriptan and 38% ± 7% as the IAA metabolite.
Following a 6 mg subcutaneous injection into the deltoid area of the arm, the systemic clearance of sumatriptan was 1,194 ± 149 mL/min and the terminal half-life was 115 ± 19 minutes.
Special Populations: Age: The pharmacokinetics of sumatriptan in the elderly (mean age: 72 years, 2 males and 4 females) and in subjects with migraine (mean age: 38 years, 25 males and 155 females) were similar to that in healthy male subjects (mean age: 30 years).
Renal Impairment: The effect of renal impairment on the pharmacokinetics of sumatriptan has not been examined.
Hepatic Impairment: The effect of mild to moderate hepatic disease on the pharmacokinetics of subcutaneously administered sumatriptan has been evaluated. There were no significant differences in the pharmacokinetics of subcutaneously administered sumatriptan in moderately hepatically impaired subjects compared with healthy controls. The pharmacokinetics of subcutaneously administered sumatriptan in patients with severe hepatic impairment has not been studied. The use of sumatriptan succinate injection in this population is contraindicated [see Contraindications ( 4)] .
Race: The systemic clearance and C max of sumatriptan were similar in Black (n = 34) and Caucasian (n = 38) healthy male subjects.
Drug Interaction Studies: Monoamine Oxidase-A Inhibitors: In a trial of 14 healthy females, pretreatment with an MAO-A inhibitor decreased the clearance of sumatriptan, resulting in a 2-fold increase in the area under the sumatriptan plasma concentration-time curve (AUC), corresponding to a 40% increase in elimination half-life .
Carcinogenesis: In carcinogenicity studies, rats and mice were given sumatriptan by oral gavage. Mice were dosed for 78 weeks and rats were dosed for 104 weeks. Average exposures achieved in mice receiving the highest dose were approximately 110 times the exposure attained in humans after the maximum recommended single dose of 6 mg. The highest dose to rats was approximately 260 times the maximum single dose of 6 mg on a mg/m 2 basis. There was no evidence of an increase in tumors in either species related to sumatriptan administration.
Mutagenesis: Sumatriptan was not mutagenic in the presence or absence of metabolic activation when tested in 2 gene mutation assays (the Ames test and the in vitro mammalian Chinese hamster V79/HGPRT assay). It was not clastogenic in 2 cytogenetics assays (the in vitro human lymphocyte assay and the in vivo rat micronucleus assay).
Impairment of Fertility: A fertility study (Segment I) by the subcutaneous route, during which male and female rats were dosed daily with sumatriptan prior to and throughout the mating period, has shown no evidence of impaired fertility at doses equivalent to approximately 100 times the maximum recommended single human dose of 6 mg on a mg/m 2 basis. However, following oral administration, a treatment-related decrease in fertility, secondary to a decrease in mating, was seen for rats treated with 50 and 500 mg/kg/day. The no-effect dose for this finding was approximately 8 times the maximum recommended single human dose of 6 mg on a mg/m 2 basis. It is not clear whether the problem is associated with the treatment of males or females or both.
Corneal Opacities: Dogs receiving oral sumatriptan developed corneal opacities and defects in the corneal epithelium. Corneal opacities were seen at the lowest dosage tested, 2 mg/kg/day, and were present after 1 month of treatment. Defects in the corneal epithelium were noted in a 60-week study. Earlier examinations for these toxicities were not conducted and no-effect doses were not established; however, the relative exposure at the lowest dose tested was approximately 5 times the human exposure after a 100 mg oral dose or 3 times the human exposure after a 6 mg subcutaneous dose.
Melanin Binding: In rats with a single subcutaneous dose (0.5 mg/kg) of radiolabeled sumatriptan, the elimination half-life of radioactivity from the eye was 15 days, suggesting that sumatriptan and its metabolites bind to the melanin of the eye. The clinical significance of this binding is unknown.
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