(ax I ti nib)
Excipient information presented when available (limited, particularly for generics); consult specific product labeling.
Inlyta: 1 mg, 5 mg
Brand Names: U.S.
- Antineoplastic Agent, Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor
- Antineoplastic Agent, Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) Inhibitor
Axitinib is a selective second generation tyrosine kinase inhibitor which blocks angiogenesis and tumor growth by inhibiting vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2, and VEGFR-3).
Rapid (Rugo, 2005)
Vd: 160 L
Hepatic; primarily via CYP3A4/5 and to a lesser extend via CYP1A2, CYP2C19 and UGT1A1
Feces (~41%; 12% as unchanged drug); urine (~23%; as metabolites)
Time to Peak
2.5 to 4 hours
2.5 to 6 hours
>99%; to albumin (primarily) and to alpha1 acid glycoprotein (AAG)
Special Populations: Hepatic Function Impairment
Systemic exposure was higher in subjects with moderate impairment (Child-Pugh class B).
Use: Labeled Indications
Renal cell carcinoma, advanced: Treatment of advanced renal cell carcinoma after failure of one prior systemic therapy.
There are no contraindications listed within the manufacturer’s labeling.
Renal cell cancer, advanced: Adults: Oral: Initial: 5 mg twice daily (approximately every 12 hours)
Dose increases: If dose is tolerated (no adverse events above grade 2, blood pressure is normal and no antihypertensive use) for at least 2 consecutive weeks, may increase the dose to 7 mg twice daily, and then further increase (using the same tolerance criteria) to 10 mg twice daily.
Dose decreases: For adverse events, reduce dose from 5 mg twice daily to 3 mg twice daily; further reduce to 2 mg twice daily if adverse events persist.
Dosage adjustment for strong CYP3A4 inhibitors: Avoid concomitant administration with strong CYP3A4 inhibitors (eg, clarithromycin, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nefazodone, protease inhibitors, telithromycin, voriconazole, grapefruit juice); if concomitant administration with a strong CYP3A4 inhibitor cannot be avoided, ~50% dosage reduction is recommended; adjust dose based on individual tolerance and safety. When the strong CYP3A4 inhibitor is discontinued, resume previous axitinib dose after 3-5 half-lives of the inhibitor have passed.
Dosing adjustment for toxicity:
Adverse events: May require temporary interruption, dose decreases (reduce dose from 5 mg twice daily to 3 mg twice daily; further reduce to 2 mg twice daily) or discontinuation
Cardiac failure: May require permanent discontinuation
Hypertension: Treat with standard antihypertensive therapy.
Persistent hypertension: May require dose reduction
Severe, persistent (despite antihypertensives and dose reduction), or evidence of hypertensive crisis: Discontinue treatment
Hemorrhage: Any bleeding requiring medical intervention: Temporarily interrupt treatment.
Proteinuria (moderate-to-severe): Reduce dose or temporarily interrupt treatment.
Dosage adjustment in renal impairment:
Mild to severe renal impairment (CrCl 15 to <89 mL/minute): No initial dosage adjustment necessary.
End-stage renal disease (ESRD) There are no dosage adjustments provided in the manufacturer’s labeling; use with caution.
Dosage adjustment in hepatic impairment:
Mild impairment (Child-Pugh class A): No starting dosage adjustment necessary.
Moderate impairment (Child-Pugh class B): Reduce starting dose by ~50%; increase or decrease based on individual tolerance.
Severe impairment (Child-Pugh class C): There are no dosage adjustments provided in the manufacturer’s labeling (has not been studied).
Hazardous agent – use appropriate precautions for handling and disposal (meets NIOSH 2014 criteria). For patients unable to swallow tablets whole, a suspension may be prepared for nasogastric tube administration (for doses of 2 to 10 mg). Place a 20 mL tightly capped amber syringe in a small drinking glass, with the open end of the syringe pointing up. Place the appropriate axitinib dose in the open syringe barrel; add 15 mL of USP grade water (do not use tap water or bottled water) to the syringe. Allow at least 10 minutes to dissolve the tablets; avoid direct light. Place the plunger of the syringe into the barrel, invert the syringe so the tip is pointing upward and remove the cap. Expel excess air; replace the cap until ready for use (keep syringe tip facing up). Prior to administration, gently invert the syringe several times to ensure a uniform suspension. Flush the nasogastric feeding tube with 15 mL of USP grade water before administration. After administering the dose, draw up 10 mL of USP grade water (into the same syringe which contained the dose) and flush the feeding tube; repeat this step 5 additional times to ensure the entire dose has been administered. Lastly, flush the feeding tube with a separate syringe containing 15 mL of USP grade water. Administer within 15 minutes of preparation.Borst DL, Arruda LS, MacLean E, Pithavala YK, Morgado JE. Common questions regarding clinical use of axitinib in advanced renal cell carcinoma. Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2014;71(13):1092-1096.
Oral: Swallow tablet whole with a glass of water. May be taken with or without food. If a dose is missed or vomited, do not make up; resume dosing with the next scheduled dose. A suspension may be prepared for nasogastric administration (refer to Extemporaneously Prepared information).
Hazardous agent; use appropriate precautions for handling and disposal (meets NIOSH 2014 criteria).
May be taken without regard to food. Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.
Store at 20°C to 25°C (68°F to 77°F); excursions permitted to 15°C to 30°C (59°F to 86°F).
Aprepitant: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Bisphosphonate Derivatives: Systemic Angiogenesis Inhibitors may enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Bisphosphonate Derivatives. Specifically, the risk for osteonecrosis of the jaw may be increased. Monitor therapy
Conivaptan: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Avoid combination
CYP3A4 Inducers (Moderate): May decrease the serum concentration of Axitinib. Avoid combination
CYP3A4 Inducers (Strong): May decrease the serum concentration of Axitinib. Avoid combination
CYP3A4 Inhibitors (Moderate): May decrease the metabolism of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
CYP3A4 Inhibitors (Strong): May increase the serum concentration of Axitinib. Management: Avoid concurrent use of axitinib with any strong CYP3A inhibitor whenever possible. If a strong CYP3A inhibitor must be used with axitinib, a 50% axitinib dose reduction is recommended. Avoid combination
Dasatinib: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Deferasirox: May decrease the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Fosaprepitant: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Fusidic Acid (Systemic): May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Avoid combination
Grapefruit Juice: May increase the serum concentration of Axitinib. Avoid combination
Idelalisib: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Avoid combination
Ivacaftor: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Luliconazole: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Mifepristone: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Management: Minimize doses of CYP3A4 substrates, and monitor for increased concentrations/toxicity, during and 2 weeks following treatment with mifepristone. Avoid cyclosporine, dihydroergotamine, ergotamine, fentanyl, pimozide, quinidine, sirolimus, and tacrolimus. Consider therapy modification
Netupitant: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Osimertinib: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Osimertinib may decrease the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Palbociclib: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Siltuximab: May decrease the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Simeprevir: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
St Johns Wort: May decrease the serum concentration of Axitinib. Avoid combination
Stiripentol: May increase the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Management: Use of stiripentol with CYP3A4 substrates that are considered to have a narrow therapeutic index should be avoided due to the increased risk for adverse effects and toxicity. Any CYP3A4 substrate used with stiripentol requires closer monitoring. Consider therapy modification
Tocilizumab: May decrease the serum concentration of CYP3A4 Substrates. Monitor therapy
Cardiovascular: Hypertension (40%; grades 3/4: 16%)
Central nervous system: Fatigue (39%), dysphonia (31%), headache (14%)
Dermatologic: Palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia syndrome (27%; grades 3/4: 5%), rash (13%; grades 3/4: <1%)
Endocrine & metabolic: Bicarbonate decreased (44%), hypocalcemia (39%), hyperglycemia (28%), hypothyroidism (19%; grades 3/4: <1%), hypernatremia (17%), hyperkalemia (15%), hypoalbuminemia (15%), hyponatremia (13%), hypophosphatemia (13%), hypoglycemia (11%)
Gastrointestinal: Diarrhea (55%; grades 3/4: 11%), appetite decreased (34%), nausea (32%; grades 3/4: 3%), lipase increased (3% to 27%), amylase increased (25%), weight loss (25%), vomiting (24%; grades 3/4: 3%), constipation (20%), mucosal inflammation (15%), stomatitis (15%), abdominal pain (8% to 14%), taste alteration (11%)
Hematologic: Anemia (4% to 35%; grades 3/4: <1%), lymphopenia (33%; grades 3/4: 3%), hemorrhage (16%; grades 3/4 1%), thrombocytopenia (15%; grades 3/4: <1%), leukopenia (11%)
Hepatic: Alkaline phosphatase increased (30%), ALT increased (22%; grades 3/4: <1%), AST increased (20%; grades 3/4: <1%)
Neuromuscular & skeletal: Weakness (21%), arthralgia (15%), limb pain (13%)
Renal: Creatinine increased (55%), proteinuria (11%; grade 3: 3%)
Respiratory: Cough (15%), dyspnea (15%)
1% to 10%:
Cardiovascular: Venous thrombotic events (grades 3/4: 3%), arterial thrombotic events (2%; grade 3/4: 1%), deep vein thrombosis (1%), transient ischemic attack (1%)
Central nervous system: Dizziness (9%)
Dermatologic: Dry skin (10%), pruritus (7%), alopecia (4%), erythema (2%)
Endocrine & metabolic: Dehydration (6%), hyperthyroidism (1%)
Gastrointestinal: Dyspepsia (10%), hemorrhoids (4%), rectal hemorrhage (2%), fistula (1%), gastrointestinal perforation (≤1%)
Hematologic: Hemoglobin increased (9%), polycythemia (1%)
Neuromuscular & skeletal: Myalgia (7%)
Ocular: Retinal vein occlusion/thrombosis (1%)
Otic: Tinnitus (3%)
Renal: Hematuria (3%)
Respiratory: Epistaxis (6%), hemoptysis (2%), pulmonary embolism (2%)
<1% (Limited to important or life-threatening): Cerebral bleeding, cerebrovascular accident, fever, hypertensive crisis, heart failure, neutropenia, reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS)
Concerns related to adverse effects:
• Cardiac effects: Cardiac failure, including fatal events, has been observed rarely. Monitor for signs/symptoms of cardiac failure throughout therapy; management may require permanent therapy discontinuation.
• Gastrointestinal events: Gastrointestinal perforation and fistulas (including a fatality) have been reported. Monitor for signs/symptoms throughout treatment.
• Hemorrhage: Hemorrhagic events (cerebral hemorrhage, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, hematuria, hemoptysis, and melena) have been reported (with some fatalities). Temporarily interrupt treatment with any hemorrhage requiring medical intervention.
• Hypertension: May cause hypertension; the median onset is within the first month, and has been observed as early as 4 days after treatment initiation. Hypertensive crisis has been reported. Blood pressure should be well-controlled prior to treatment initiation. Monitor blood pressure and treat with standard antihypertensive therapy. Persistent hypertension (despite antihypertensive therapy) may require dose reduction; discontinue if severe and persistent despite concomitant antihypertensives (or dose reduction), or with evidence of hypertensive crisis. Monitor for hypotension if on antihypertensive therapy and axitinib is withheld or discontinued.
• Proteinuria: Proteinuria is associated with use. Monitor for proteinuria at baseline and periodically throughout therapy. If moderate or severe proteinuria occurs, reduce dose or temporarily withhold treatment.
• Reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS): Cases of RPLS have been reported. Symptoms of RPLS include confusion, headache, hypertension (mild-to-severe), lethargy, seizure, blindness and/or other vision or neurologic disturbances; interrupt treatment and manage hypertension. MRI is recommended to confirm RPLS diagnosis. Discontinue axitinib if RPLS is confirmed. The safety of reinitiating axitinib in patients previously experiencing RPLS is unknown.
• Thrombotic events: Arterial thrombotic events (cerebrovascular accident, MI, retinal artery occlusion, and transient ischemic attack), with fatalities, have been reported. Venous thrombotic events, including pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, retinal vein occlusion and retinal vein thrombosis, have been observed (with some fatalities). Use with caution in patients with a history of or risks for arterial or venous thrombotic events; has not been studied in patients within 12 months of an arterial thrombotic event or within 6 months of a venous thrombotic event.
• Thyroid dysfunction: Hypothyroidism occurs commonly with tyrosine kinase inhibitors, including axitinib. Hyperthyroidism has also been reported. Monitor thyroid function at baseline and periodically throughout therapy. Thyroid disorders should be treated according to standard practice to achieve/maintain euthyroid state.
• Wound healing complications: Although the effect on wound healing has not been studied with axitinib, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) receptor inhibitors are associated with impaired wound healing. Discontinue treatment at least 24 hours prior to scheduled surgery; treatment reinitiation should be guided by clinical judgment and wound assessment.
• Brain metastases: Has not been studied in patients with evidence of untreated brain metastases; use is not recommended.
• Gastrointestinal bleeding: Has not been studied in patients with recent active gastrointestinal bleeding; use is not recommended.
• Hepatic impairment: Systemic exposure to axitinib is increased in patients with moderate impairment (Child-Pugh class B); dose reductions are recommended. Has not been studied in patients with severe impairment (Child-Pugh class C). Increases in ALT have been observed; monitor liver function tests prior to therapy initiation and periodically throughout treatment.
Concurrent drug therapy issues:
• Drug-drug interactions: Potentially significant interactions may exist, requiring dose or frequency adjustment, additional monitoring, and/or selection of alternative therapy. Consult drug interactions database for more detailed information.
• Hazardous agent: Use appropriate precautions for handling and disposal (meets NIOSH 2014 criteria).
Hepatic function (ALT, AST, and bilirubin; baseline and periodic), thyroid function (baseline and periodic), urinalysis (for proteinuria; baseline and periodically); blood pressure, signs/symptoms of RPLS, gastrointestinal bleeding/perforation/fistula, signs/symptoms cardiac failure
Thyroid function testing recommendations (Hamnvik, 2011):
Preexisting levothyroxine therapy: Obtain baseline TSH levels, then monitor every 4 weeks until levels and levothyroxine dose are stable, then monitor every 2 months
Without preexisting thyroid hormone replacement: TSH at baseline, then monthly for 4 months, then every 2-3 months
Pregnancy Risk Factor
Teratogenic, embryotoxic, and fetotoxic events were observed in animal reproduction studies when administered in doses less than the normal human dose. Based on its mechanism of action and because axitinib inhibits angiogenesis (a critical component of fetal development), adverse effects on pregnancy would be expected. Women of childbearing potential should be advised to avoid pregnancy during therapy.
• Discuss specific use of drug and side effects with patient as it relates to treatment. (HCAHPS: During this hospital stay, were you given any medicine that you had not taken before? Before giving you any new medicine, how often did hospital staff tell you what the medicine was for? How often did hospital staff describe possible side effects in a way you could understand?)
• Patient may experience dysgeusia, diarrhea, nausea, lack of appetite, stomatitis, constipation, arthralgia, or xeroderma. Have patient report immediately to prescriber signs of hemorrhaging, signs of hyperglycemia, illogical thinking, severe headache, intolerable dyspepsia, significant asthenia, temperature sensitivity, weight gain or loss, eczema of hands or feet, myalgia, muscle cramps, blindness, dysphonia, alopecia, cardiac failure (rare), or signs of thrombosis (HCAHPS).
• Educate patient about signs of a significant reaction (eg, wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat). Note: This is not a comprehensive list of all side effects. Patient should consult prescriber for additional questions.
Intended Use and Disclaimer: Should not be printed and given to patients. This information is intended to serve as a concise initial reference for healthcare professionals to use when discussing medications with a patient. You must ultimately rely on your own discretion, experience and judgment in diagnosing, treating and advising patients.
More about axitinib
- Other brands: Inlyta