TACLONEX- calcipotriene and betamethasone dipropionate ointment
Warner Chilcott (US), LLC


Not for Ophthalmic, Oral or Intravaginal Use.


Taclonex® Ointment contains calcipotriene hydrate and betamethasone dipropionate.
It is intended for topical use.

Calcipotriene hydrate is a synthetic vitamin D3 analogue.

Chemically, calcipotriene hydrate is (5Z,7E,22E,24S)-24-cyclopropyl-9,10-secochola-5,7,10(19),22-tetraene-1(α),3(β),24-triol,hydrate, with the empirical formula C27 H40 O3 ,H2 O, a molecular weight of 430.6, and the following structural formula:

Structural formula of calcipotriene hydrate

Calcipotriene hydrate is a white to almost white crystalline compound.

Betamethasone dipropionate is a synthetic corticosteroid.

Betamethasone dipropionate has the chemical name 9-fluoro-11(β),17,21-trihydroxy-16(β)-methylpregna-1,4-diene-3,20-dione17,21-dipropionate, with the empirical formula C28 H37 FO7 , a molecular weight of 504.6, and the following structural formula:

Structural formula of Betamethasone dipropionate

Betamethasone dipropionate is a white to almost white odorless powder.

Each gram of Taclonex® Ointment contains 52.18 mcg of calcipotriene hydrate (equivalent to 50 mcg of calcipotriene) and 0.643 mg of betamethasone dipropionate (equivalent to 0.5 mg of betamethasone) in an ointment base of mineral oil, PPG-15 stearyl ether, dl-alpha tocopherol and white petrolatum.


Taclonex® Ointment:

Taclonex® Ointment combines the pharmacological effects of calcipotriene hydrate and betamethasone dipropionate as described below.

In a vasoconstrictor study, the skin blanching response of Taclonex® Ointment was consistent with that of a potent corticosteroid.


Pharmacokinetics: Calcipotriene metabolism following systemic uptake is rapid and occurs in the liver. The primary metabolites of calcipotriene are less potent than the parent compound.

Betamethasone dipropionate

Like other topical corticosteroids, betamethasone dipropionate has anti-inflammatory, antipruritic and vasoconstrictive properties. However, while the physiologic, pharmacologic, and clinical effects of the corticosteroids are well known, the exact mechanisms of their actions in psoriasis vulgaris are uncertain.

Pharmacokinetics: The extent of percutaneous absorption of topical corticosteroids is determined by many factors including the vehicle, the integrity of the epidermal barrier, and the use of occlusive dressings. Topical corticosteroids can be absorbed from normal intact skin. Inflammation and/or other disease processes in the skin may increase percutaneous absorption.

There are no human data regarding the distribution of corticosteroids to body organs following topical application. Nevertheless, once absorbed through the skin, topical corticosteroids are handled through pharmacokinetic pathways similar to systemically administered corticosteroids. Corticosteroids are metabolized primarily in the liver and are then excreted by the kidneys. In addition, some corticosteroids and their metabolites are also excreted in the bile.

Taclonex® Ointment was applied once daily for 4 weeks to adult patients (N = 12) with psoriasis vulgaris to study its effects on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Of eleven patients tested, none demonstrated adrenal suppression as indicated by a 30-minute post-stimulation cortisol level ≤ 18 mcg/dL.

However in another clinical study of Taclonex® Ointment, one subject (N = 19) demonstrated adrenal suppression.


In an international, multi-center, double-blind, vehicle- and active-controlled, parallel-group study, 1,603 patients with mild to very severe psoriasis vulgaris on trunk and limbs were treated once daily for 4 weeks. Patients were randomized to one of four treatment arms: Taclonex® Ointment, calcipotriene hydrate 50 mcg/g in the same vehicle, betamethasone dipropionate 0.64 mg/g in the same vehicle, and vehicle alone. The mean age of the patients was 48.4 years and 60.5% were male. Most patients had disease of moderate severity at baseline.

Efficacy was assessed as the proportion of patients with absent or very mild disease according to the Investigator’s Global Assessment of Disease Severity at end of treatment (4 weeks). “Absent” disease was defined as no evidence of redness, thickness, or scaling. “Very mild disease” was defined as controlled disease, but not entirely cleared: lesions with some discoloration with absolutely minimal thickness, i.e. the edges to the lesion(s) could just be felt.


Taclonex® Ointment


Betamethasone dipropionate


Absent or very mild disease 48.0% 16.5% 26.3% 7.6%

In addition to the pivotal study (N = 490), four randomized, double-blind, vehicle- or active-controlled, parallel-group studies were conducted and provided supportive evidence of efficacy. These studies included a total of 1,058 patients treated with Taclonex® Ointment once daily for up to 4 weeks.


Taclonex® Ointment is indicated for the topical treatment of psoriasis vulgaris in adults 18 years of age and above for up to 4 weeks. The maximum weekly dose should not exceed 100 g. Treatment of more than 30% body surface area is not recommended.

Taclonex® Ointment should not be applied to the face, axillae or groin.


Taclonex® Ointment is contraindicated in those patients with a history of hypersensitivity to any of the components of the preparation.

Taclonex® Ointment is contraindicated in patients with known or suspected disorders of calcium metabolism.

Taclonex® Ointment is contraindicated in patients with erythrodermic, exfoliative and pustular psoriasis.



Hypercalcemia has been observed with use of Taclonex® Ointment. If elevation of serum calcium outside the normal range occurs, discontinue treatment until normal calcium levels are restored. In the trials that included assessment of the effects of Taclonex® Ointment on calcium metabolism, such testing was done after 4 weeks of treatment. The effects of Taclonex® Ointment on calcium metabolism following treatment durations of longer than 4 weeks are not known.

Systemic absorption of topical corticosteroids has produced reversible hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis suppression, manifestations of Cushing’s syndrome, hyperglycemia, and glucosuria in some patients. Conditions which augment systemic absorption include the application of the more potent steroids, use over large surface areas, prolonged use, and the addition of occlusive dressings. Use of more than one corticosteroid-containing product at the same time may increase total systemic glucocorticoid exposure. (See DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION.)

Therefore, patients receiving a large dose of a potent topical steroid applied to a large surface area should be evaluated periodically for evidence of HPA axis suppression by using the Cosyntropin Stimulation Test. If HPA axis suppression is noted, an attempt should be made to withdraw the drug, to reduce the frequency of application, or to substitute a less potent steroid. Recovery of HPA axis function is generally prompt and complete upon discontinuation of the topical corticosteroid.

The use of Taclonex® Ointment has not been studied in patients with severe renal insufficiency or severe hepatic disorders.

HPA axis suppression has been observed with Taclonex® Ointment.

If irritation develops, Taclonex® Ointment should be discontinued and appropriate therapy instituted.

Allergic contact dermatitis with corticosteroids is usually diagnosed by observing failure to heal rather than by noting any clinical exacerbation as with most topical products not containing corticosteroids. Such an observation should be corroborated with appropriate diagnostic patch testing.

If concomitant skin infections are present or develop after treatment initiations, an appropriate antifungal or antibacterial agent should be used. If a favorable response does not occur promptly, use of Taclonex® Ointment should be discontinued until the infection has been adequately controlled.

Taclonex® Ointment should not be used in the presence of pre-existing skin atrophy at the treatment site.

Taclonex® Ointment should not be used on the face, axillae or groin.

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