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Components:
Pantoprazole
Method of action:
Antiulcer, Drugs For Acid Related Disorders, Proton Pump Inhibitor
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Medically reviewed by Oliinyk Elizabeth Ivanovna, Pharmacy. Last updated on 2019.09.18

Name of the medicinal product

Acernix

Qualitative and quantitative composition

Pantoprazole

Therapeutic indications

The information provided in Therapeutic indications of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Therapeutic indications in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension and PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets are indicated for:

Short-Term Treatment Of Erosive Esophagitis Associated With Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

PROTONIX is indicated in adults and pediatric patients five years of age and older for the short-term treatment (up to 8 weeks) in the healing and symptomatic relief of erosive esophagitis (EE). For those adult patients who have not healed after 8 weeks of treatment, an additional 8-week course of PROTONIX may be considered. Safety of treatment beyond 8 weeks in pediatric patients has not been established.

Maintenance Of Healing Of Erosive Esophagitis

PROTONIX is indicated for maintenance of healing of EE and reduction in relapse rates of daytime and nighttime heartburn symptoms in adult patients with GERD. Controlled studies did not extend beyond 12 months.

Pathological Hypersecretory Conditions Including Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome

PROTONIX is indicated for the long-term treatment of pathological hypersecretory conditions, including Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.

Dosage (Posology) and method of administration

The information provided in Dosage (Posology) and method of administration of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Dosage (Posology) and method of administration in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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Recommended Dosing Schedule

PROTONIX is supplied as delayed-release granules in packets for preparation of oral suspensions or as delayed-release tablets. The recommended dosages are outlined in Table 1.

Table 1: Recommended Dosing Schedule for PROTONIX

Indication Dose Frequency
Short-Term Treatment of Erosive Esophagitis Associated With GERD
  Adults 40 mg Once daily for up to 8 weeks*
Children (5 years and older)
  ≥ 15 kg to < 40 kg 20 mg Once daily for up to 8 weeks
  ≥ 40 kg 40 mg
Maintenance of Healing of Erosive Esophagitis
  Adults 40 mg Once daily***
Pathological Hypersecretory Conditions Including Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome
  Adults 40 mg Twice daily**
* For adult patients who have not healed after 8 weeks of treatment, an additional 8-week course of PROTONIX may be considered.
** Dosage regimens should be adjusted to individual patient needs and should continue for as long as clinically indicated. Doses up to 240 mg daily have been administered.
*** Controlled studies did not extend beyond 12 months

Administration Instructions

Directions for method of administration for each dosage form are presented in Table 2.

Table 2: Administration Instructions

Formulation Route Instructions*
Delayed-Release Tablets Oral Swallowed whole, with or without food
For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension Oral Administered in 1 teaspoonful of applesauce or apple juice approximately 30 minutes prior to a meal
For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension Nasogastric tube See instructions below
* Patients should be cautioned that PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets and PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension should not be split, chewed, or crushed.

PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets

PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets should be swallowed whole, with or without food in the stomach. If patients are unable to swallow a 40 mg tablet, two 20 mg tablets may be taken. Concomitant administration of antacids does not affect the absorption of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets.

PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension

PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension should only be administered approximately 30 minutes prior to a meal via oral administration in apple juice or applesauce or nasogastric tube in apple juice only. Because proper pH is necessary for stability, do not administer PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension in liquids other than apple juice, or foods other than applesauce.

Do not divide the 40 mg PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension packet to create a 20 mg dosage for pediatric patients who are unable to take the tablet formulation.

PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension - Oral Administration In Applesauce
  • Open packet.
  • Sprinkle granules on one teaspoonful of applesauce. DO NOT USE OTHER FOODS OR CRUSH OR CHEW THE GRANULES.
  • Take within 10 minutes of preparation.
  • Take sips of water to make sure granules are washed down into the stomach. Repeat water sips as necessary.
PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension - Oral Administration In Apple Juice
  • Open packet.
  • Empty granules into a small cup or teaspoon containing one teaspoon of apple juice.
  • Stir for 5 seconds (granules will not dissolve) and swallow immediately.
  • To make sure that the entire dose is taken, rinse the container once or twice with apple juice to remove any remaining granules. Swallow immediately.
PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension - Nasogastric (NG) Tube Or Gastrostomy Tube Administration

For patients who have a nasogastric tube or gastrostomy tube in place, PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension can be given as follows:

  • Remove the plunger from the barrel of a 2 ounce (60 mL) catheter-tip syringe. Discard the plunger.
  • Connect the catheter tip of the syringe to a 16 French (or larger) tube.
  • Hold the syringe attached to the tubing as high as possible while giving PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension to prevent any bending of the tubing.
  • Empty the contents of the packet into the barrel of the syringe.
  • Add 10 mL (2 teaspoonfuls) of apple juice and gently tap and/or shake the barrel of the syringe to help rinse the syringe and tube. Repeat at least twice more using the same amount of apple juice (10 mL or 2 teaspoonfuls) each time. No granules should remain in the syringe.

Contraindications

The information provided in Contraindications of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Contraindications in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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  • PROTONIX is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to any component of the formulation or any substituted benzimidazole. Hypersensitivity reactions may include anaphylaxis, anaphylactic shock, angioedema, bronchospasm, acute interstitial nephritis, and urticaria.
  • Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), including PROTONIX, are contraindicated in patients receiving rilpivirine-containing products.

Special warnings and precautions for use

The information provided in Special warnings and precautions for use of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Special warnings and precautions for use in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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WARNINGS

Included as part of the "PRECAUTIONS" Section

PRECAUTIONS

Presence Of Gastric Malignancy

In adults, symptomatic response to therapy with PROTONIX does not preclude the presence of gastric malignancy. Consider additional follow-up and diagnostic testing in adult patients who have a suboptimal response or an early symptomatic relapse after completing treatment with a PPI. In older patients, also consider an endoscopy.

Acute Interstitial Nephritis

Acute interstitial nephritis has been observed in patients taking PPIs including PROTONIX. Acute interstitial nephritis may occur at any point during PPI therapy and is generally attributed to an idiopathic hypersensitivity reaction. Discontinue PROTONIX if acute interstitial nephritis develops.

Clostridium Difficile-Associated Diarrhea

Published observational studies suggest that PPI therapy like PROTONIX may be associated with an increased risk of Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea, especially in hospitalized patients. This diagnosis should be considered for diarrhea that does not improve.

Patients should use the lowest dose and shortest duration of PPI therapy appropriate to the condition being treated.

Bone Fracture

Several published observational studies suggest that PPI therapy may be associated with an increased risk for osteoporosis-related fractures of the hip, wrist, or spine. The risk of fracture was increased in patients who received high-dose, defined as multiple daily doses, and longterm PPI therapy (a year or longer). Patients should use the lowest dose and shortest duration of PPI therapy appropriate to the condition being treated. Patients at risk for osteoporosis-related fractures should be managed according to established treatment guidelines.

Cutaneous And Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Cutaneous lupus erythematosus (CLE) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) have been reported in patients taking PPIs, including pantoprazole sodium. These events have occurred as both new onset and an exacerbation of existing autoimmune disease. The majority of PPIinduced lupus erythematous cases were CLE.

The most common form of CLE reported in patients treated with PPIs was subacute CLE (SCLE) and occurred within weeks to years after continuous drug therapy in patients ranging from infants to the elderly. Generally, histological findings were observed without organ involvement.

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is less commonly reported than CLE in patients receiving PPIs. PPI associated SLE is usually milder than non-drug induced SLE. Onset of SLE typically occurred within days to years after initiating treatment primarily in patients ranging from young adults to the elderly. The majority of patients presented with rash; however, arthralgia and cytopenia were also reported.

Avoid administration of PPIs for longer than medically indicated. If signs or symptoms consistent with CLE or SLE are noted in patients receiving PROTONIX, discontinue the drug and refer the patient to the appropriate specialist for evaluation. Most patients improve with discontinuation of the PPI alone in 4 to 12 weeks. Serological testing (e.g. ANA) may be positive and elevated serological test results may take longer to resolve than clinical manifestations.

Cyanocobalamin (Vitamin B-12) Deficiency

Generally, daily treatment with any acid-suppressing medications over a long period of time (e.g., longer than 3 years) may lead to malabsorption of cyanocobalamin (Vitamin B-12) caused by hypo- or achlorhydria. Rare reports of cyanocobalamin deficiency occurring with acid-suppressing therapy have been reported in the literature. This diagnosis should be considered if clinical symptoms consistent with cyanocobalamin deficiency are observed.

Hypomagnesemia

Hypomagnesemia, symptomatic and asymptomatic, has been reported rarely in patients treated with PPIs for at least three months, in most cases after a year of therapy. Serious adverse events include tetany, arrhythmias, and seizures. In most patients, treatment of hypomagnesemia required magnesium replacement and discontinuation of the PPI.

For patients expected to be on prolonged treatment or who take PPIs with medications such as digoxin or drugs that may cause hypomagnesemia (e.g., diuretics), health care professionals may consider monitoring magnesium levels prior to initiation of PPI treatment and periodically.

Tumorigenicity

Due to the chronic nature of GERD, there may be a potential for prolonged administration of PROTONIX. In long-term rodent studies, pantoprazole was carcinogenic and caused rare types of gastrointestinal tumors. The relevance of these findings to tumor development in humans is unknown.

Interference With Urine Screen For THC

There have been reports of false positive urine screening tests for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in patients receiving PPIs, including PROTONIX.

Concomitant Use Of PROTONIX With Methotrexate

Literature suggests that concomitant use of PPIs with methotrexate (primarily at high dose; see methotrexate prescribing information) may elevate and prolong serum levels of methotrexate and/or its metabolite, possibly leading to methotrexate toxicities. In high-dose methotrexate administration, a temporary withdrawal of the PPI may be considered in some patients .

Patient Counseling Information

Advise the patient to read the FDA-approved patient labeling (Medication Guide).

Adverse Reactions
  • Hypersensitivity Reactions
  • Acute Interstitial Nephritis
  • Clostridium difficile-Associated Diarrhea
  • Bone Fracture
  • Cutaneous and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Cyanocobalamin (Vitamin B-12) Deficiency
  • Hypomagnesemia
Drug Interactions

Instruct patients to inform their healthcare provider of any other medications they are currently taking, including rilpivirine-containing products , high dose methotrexate and over-the-counter medications.

Pregnancy

Inform female patients of reproductive potential that PROTONIX may cause fetal harm and to inform their prescriber of a known or suspected pregnancy.

Administration
  • Caution patients that PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension and PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets should not be split, crushed, or chewed.
  • PROTONIX oral suspension packet is a fixed dose and cannot be divided to make a smaller dose.
  • Tell patients that PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets should be swallowed whole, with or without food in the stomach.
  • Let patients know that concomitant administration of antacids does not affect the absorption of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets.
  • Advise patients to take PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension approximately 30 minutes before a meal.
  • Advise patients that PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension should only be administered in apple juice or applesauce, not in water, other liquids, or foods.

Nonclinical Toxicology

Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility

In a 24-month carcinogenicity study, Sprague-Dawley rats were treated orally with pantoprazole doses of 0.5 to 200 mg/kg/day, about 0.1 to 40 times the exposure on a body surface area basis of a 50 kg person dosed with 40 mg/day. In the gastric fundus, treatment at 0.5 to 200 mg/kg/day produced enterochromaffin-like (ECL) cell hyperplasia and benign and malignant neuroendocrine cell tumors in a dose-related manner. In the forestomach, treatment with 50 and 200 mg/kg/day (about 10 and 40 times the recommended human dose on a body surface area basis) produced benign squamous cell papillomas and malignant squamous cell carcinomas. Rare gastrointestinal tumors associated with pantoprazole treatment included an adenocarcinoma of the duodenum with 50 mg/kg/day and benign polyps and adenocarcinomas of the gastric fundus with 200 mg/kg/day. In the liver, treatment at 0.5 to 200 mg/kg/day produced dose-related increases in the incidences of hepatocellular adenomas and carcinomas. In the thyroid gland, treatment with 200 mg/kg/day produced increased incidences of follicular cell adenomas and carcinomas for both male and female rats.

In a 24-month carcinogenicity study, Fischer 344 rats were treated orally with doses of 5 to 50 mg/kg/day of pantoprazole, approximately 1 to 10 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area. In the gastric fundus, treatment with 5 to 50 mg/kg/day produced enterochromaffin-like (ECL) cell hyperplasia and benign and malignant neuroendocrine cell tumors. Dose selection for this study may not have been adequate to comprehensively evaluate the carcinogenic potential of pantoprazole.

In a 24-month carcinogenicity study, B6C3F1 mice were treated orally with doses of 5 to 150 mg/kg/day of pantoprazole, 0.5 to 15 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area. In the liver, treatment with 150 mg/kg/day produced increased incidences of hepatocellular adenomas and carcinomas in female mice. Treatment with 5 to 150 mg/kg/day also produced gastric-fundic ECL cell hyperplasia.

A 26-week p53 +/- transgenic mouse carcinogenicity study was not positive.

Pantoprazole was positive in the in vitro human lymphocyte chromosomal aberration assays, in one of two mouse micronucleus tests for clastogenic effects, and in the in vitro Chinese hamster ovarian cell/HGPRT forward mutation assay for mutagenic effects. Equivocal results were observed in the in vivo rat liver DNA covalent binding assay. Pantoprazole was negative in the in vitro Ames mutation assay, the in vitro unscheduled DNA synthesis (UDS) assay with rat hepatocytes, the in vitro AS52/GPT mammalian cell-forward gene mutation assay, the in vitro thymidine kinase mutation test with mouse lymphoma L5178Y cells, and the in vivo rat bone marrow cell chromosomal aberration assay.

There were no effects on fertility or reproductive performance when pantoprazole was given at oral doses up to 500 mg/kg/day in male rats (98 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area) and 450 mg/kg/day in female rats (88 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area).

Use In Specific Populations

Pregnancy

Teratogenic Effects

Pregnancy Category C

Reproduction studies have been performed in rats at oral pantoprazole doses up to 450 mg/kg/day (about 88 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area) and in rabbits at oral doses up to 40 mg/kg/day (about 16 times the recommended human dose based on body surface area) with administration of pantoprazole sodium during organogenesis in pregnant animals. The studies have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility or harm to the fetus due to pantoprazole.

A pre- and postnatal development toxicity study in rats with additional endpoints to evaluate the effect on bone development was performed with pantoprazole sodium. Oral pantoprazole doses of 5, 15, and 30 mg/kg/day (approximately 1, 3, and 6 times the human dose of 40 mg/day on a body surface area basis) were administered to pregnant females from gestation day (GD) 6 through lactation day (LD) 21. On postnatal day (PND 4) through PND 21, the pups were administered oral doses at 5, 15, and 30 mg/kg/day (approximately 1, 2.3, and 3.2 times the exposure (AUC) in humans at a dose of 40 mg). There were no drug-related findings in maternal animals. During the preweaning dosing phase (PND 4 to 21) of the pups, there were increased mortality and/or moribundity and decreased body weight and body weight gain at 5 mg/kg/day (approximately equal exposures (AUC) in humans receiving the 40 mg dose) and higher doses. On PND 21, decreased mean femur length and weight and changes in femur bone mass and geometry were observed in the offspring at 5 mg/kg/day (approximately equal exposures (AUC) in humans at the 40 mg dose) and higher doses. The femur findings included lower total area, bone mineral content and density, periosteal and endosteal circumference, and cross-sectional moment of inertia. There were no microscopic changes in the distal femur, proximal tibia, or stifle joints. Changes in bone parameters were partially reversible following a recovery period, with findings on PND 70 limited to lower femur metaphysis cortical/subcortical bone mineral density in female pups at 5 mg/kg/day (approximately equal exposures (AUC) in humans at the 40 mg dose) and higher doses.

There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Advise pregnant women of the potential risk of fetal harm. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, this drug should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Nursing Mothers

Pantoprazole and its metabolites are excreted in the milk of rats. Pantoprazole excretion in human milk has been detected in a study of a single nursing mother after a single 40 mg oral dose of pantoprazole sodium. The clinical relevance of this finding is not known. Many drugs which are excreted in human milk have a potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants. Based on the potential for tumorigenicity shown for pantoprazole sodium in rodent carcinogenicity studies, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug, taking into account the benefit of the drug to the mother.

Pediatric Use

The safety and effectiveness of PROTONIX for short-term treatment (up to eight weeks) of erosive esophagitis (EE) associated with GERD have been established in pediatric patients 1 year through 16 years of age. Effectiveness for EE has not been demonstrated in patients less than 1 year of age. In addition, for patients less than 5 years of age, there is no appropriate dosage strength in an age-appropriate formulation available. Therefore, PROTONIX is indicated for the short-term treatment of EE associated with GERD for patients 5 years and older. The safety and effectiveness of PROTONIX for pediatric uses other than EE have not been established.

1 Year Through 16 Years Of Age

Use of PROTONIX in pediatric patients 1 year through 16 years of age for short-term treatment (up to eight weeks) of EE associated with GERD is supported by: a) extrapolation of results from adequate and well-controlled studies that supported the approval of PROTONIX for treatment of EE associated with GERD in adults, and b) safety, effectiveness, and pharmacokinetic studies performed in pediatric patients.

Safety of PROTONIX in the treatment of EE associated with GERD in pediatric patients 1 through 16 years of age was evaluated in three multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-treatment studies, involving 249 pediatric patients, including 8 with EE (4 patients ages 1 year to 5 years and 4 patients 5 years to 11 years). The children ages 1 year to 5 years with endoscopically diagnosed EE (defined as an endoscopic Hetzel-Dent score ≥ 2) were treated once daily for 8 weeks with one of two dose levels of PROTONIX (approximating 0.6 mg/kg or 1.2 mg/kg). All 4 of these patients with EE were healed (Hetzel-Dent score of 0 or 1) at 8 weeks. Because EE is uncommon in the pediatric population, predominantly pediatric patients with endoscopically-proven or symptomatic GERD were also included in these studies.

Patients were treated with a range of doses of PROTONIX once daily for 8 weeks. For safety findings see ADVERSE REACTIONS. Because these pediatric trials had no placebo, active comparator, or evidence of a dose response, the trials were inconclusive regarding the clinical benefit of PROTONIX for symptomatic GERD in the pediatric population. The effectiveness of PROTONIX for treating symptomatic GERD in pediatric patients has not been established.

Although the data from the clinical trials support use of PROTONIX for the short-term treatment of EE associated with GERD in pediatric patients 1 year through 5 years, there is no commercially available dosage formulation appropriate for patients less than 5 years of age.

In a population pharmacokinetic analysis, clearance values in the children 1 to 5 years old with endoscopically proven GERD had a median value of 2.4 L/h. Following a 1.2 mg/kg equivalent dose (15 mg for. 12.5 kg and 20 mg for > 12.5 to < 25 kg), the plasma concentrations of pantoprazole were highly variable and the median time to peak plasma concentration was 3 to 6 hours. The estimated AUC for patients 1 to 5 years old was 37% higher than for adults receiving a single 40 mg tablet, with a geometric mean AUC value of 6.8 μg•hr/mL.

Neonates To Less Than One Year Of Age

PROTONIX was not found to be effective in a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, treatment-withdrawal study of 129 pediatric patients 1 through 11 months of age. Patients were enrolled if they had symptomatic GERD based on medical history and had not responded to non-pharmacologic interventions for GERD for two weeks. Patients received PROTONIX daily for four weeks in an open-label phase, then patients were randomized in equal proportion to receive PROTONIX treatment or placebo for the subsequent four weeks in a double-blind manner. Efficacy was assessed by observing the time from randomization to study discontinuation due to symptom worsening during the four-week treatment-withdrawal phase. There was no statistically significant difference between PROTONIX and placebo in the rate of discontinuation.

In this trial, the adverse reactions that were reported more commonly (difference of ≥ 4%) in the treated population compared to the placebo population were elevated CK, otitis media, rhinitis, and laryngitis.

In a population pharmacokinetic analysis, the systemic exposure was higher in patients less than 1 year of age with GERD compared to adults who received a single 40 mg dose (geometric mean AUC was 103% higher in preterm infants and neonates receiving single dose of 2.5 mg of PROTONIX, and 23% higher in infants 1 through 11 months of age receiving a single dose of approximately 1.2 mg/kg). In these patients, the apparent clearance (CL/F) increased with age (median clearance: 0.6 L/hr, range: 0.03 to 3.2 L/hr).

These doses resulted in pharmacodynamic effects on gastric but not esophageal pH. Following once daily dosing of 2.5 mg of PROTONIX in preterm infants and neonates, there was an increase in the mean gastric pH (from 4.3 at baseline to 5.2 at steady-state) and in the mean % time that gastric pH was > 4 (from 60% at baseline to 80% at steady-state). Following once daily dosing of approximately 1.2 mg/kg of PROTONIX in infants 1 through 11 months of age, there was an increase in the mean gastric pH (from 3.1 at baseline to 4.2 at steady-state) and in the mean % time that gastric pH was > 4 (from 32% at baseline to 60% at steady-state). However, no significant changes were observed in mean intraesophageal pH or % time that esophageal pH was < 4 in either age group.

Because PROTONIX was not shown to be effective in the randomized, placebo-controlled study in this age group, the use of PROTONIX for treatment of symptomatic GERD in infants less than 1 year of age is not indicated.

Animal Toxicity Data

In a pre- and post-natal development study in rats, the pups were administered oral doses of pantoprazole at 5, 15, and 30 mg/kg/day (approximately 1, 2.3, and 3.2 times the exposure (AUC) in children aged 6 to 11 years at a dose of 40 mg) on postnatal day (PND 4) through PND 21, in addition to lactational exposure through milk. On PND 21, decreased mean femur length and weight and changes in femur bone mass and geometry were observed in the offspring at 5 mg/kg/day (approximately equal exposures (AUC) in children aged 6 to 11 years at the 40 mg dose) and higher doses. Changes in bone parameters were partially reversible following a recovery period.

In neonatal/juvenile animals (rats and dogs) toxicities were similar to those observed in adult animals, including gastric alterations, decreases in red cell mass, increases in lipids, enzyme induction and hepatocellular hypertrophy. An increased incidence of eosinophilic chief cells in adult and neonatal/juvenile rats, and atrophy of chief cells in adult rats and in neonatal/juvenile dogs, was observed in the fundic mucosa of stomachs in repeated-dose studies. Full to partial recovery of these effects were noted in animals of both age groups following a recovery period.

Geriatric Use

In short-term US clinical trials, erosive esophagitis healing rates in the 107 elderly patients (≥ 65 years old) treated with PROTONIX were similar to those found in patients under the age of 65. The incidence rates of adverse reactions and laboratory abnormalities in patients aged 65 years and older were similar to those associated with patients younger than 65 years of age.

Undesirable effects

The information provided in Undesirable effects of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Undesirable effects in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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The following serious adverse reactions are described below and elsewhere in labeling:

  • Acute Interstitial Nephritis
  • Clostridium difficile-Associated Diarrhea
  • Bone Fracture
  • Cutaneous and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Cyanocobalamin (Vitamin B-12) Deficiency
  • Hypomagnesemia

Clinical Trials Experience

The adverse reaction profiles for PROTONIX (pantoprazole sodium) For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension and PROTONIX (pantoprazole sodium) Delayed-Release Tablets are similar.

Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in clinical practice.

Adults

Safety in nine randomized comparative US clinical trials in patients with GERD included 1,473 patients on oral PROTONIX (20 mg or 40 mg), 299 patients on an H2-receptor antagonist, 46 patients on another PPI, and 82 patients on placebo. The most frequently occurring adverse reactions are listed in Table 3.

Table 3: Adverse Reactions Reported in Clinical Trials of Adult Patients with GERD at a Frequency of > 2%

  PROTONIX
(n=1473)
%
Comparators
(n=345)
%
Placebo
(n=82)
%
Headache 12.2 12.8 8.5
Diarrhea 8.8 9.6 4.9
Nausea 7.0 5.2 9.8
Abdominal pain 6.2 4.1 6.1
Vomiting 4.3 3.5 2.4
Flatulence 3.9 2.9 3.7
Dizziness 3.0 2.9 1.2
Arthralgia 2.8 1.4 1.2

Additional adverse reactions that were reported for PROTONIX in clinical trials with a frequency of ≤ 2% are listed below by body system:

Body as a Whole: allergic reaction, pyrexia, photosensitivity reaction, facial edema

Gastrointestinal: constipation, dry mouth, hepatitis

Hematologic: leukopenia, thrombocytopenia

Metabolic/Nutritional: elevated CK (creatine kinase), generalized edema, elevated triglycerides, liver enzymes elevated

Musculoskeletal: myalgia

Nervous: depression, vertigo

Skin and Appendages: urticaria, rash, pruritus

Special Senses: blurred vision

Pediatric Patients

Safety of PROTONIX in the treatment of Erosive Esophagitis (EE) associated with GERD was evaluated in pediatric patients ages 1 year through 16 years in three clinical trials. Safety trials involved pediatric patients with EE; however, as EE is uncommon in the pediatric population, 249 pediatric patients with endoscopically-proven or symptomatic GERD were also evaluated. All adult adverse reactions to PROTONIX are considered relevant to pediatric patients. In patients ages 1 year through 16 years, the most commonly reported (> 4%) adverse reactions include: URI, headache, fever, diarrhea, vomiting, rash, and abdominal pain.

For safety information in patients less than 1 year of age see Use In Specific Populations. Additional adverse reactions that were reported for PROTONIX in pediatric patients in clinical trials with a frequency of ≤ 4% are listed below by body system:

Body as a Whole: allergic reaction, facial edema

Gastrointestinal: constipation, flatulence, nausea

Metabolic/Nutritional: elevated triglycerides, elevated liver enzymes, elevated CK (creatine kinase)

Musculoskeletal: arthralgia, myalgia

Nervous: dizziness, vertigo

Skin and Appendages: urticaria

The following adverse reactions seen in adults in clinical trials were not reported in pediatric patients in clinical trials, but are considered relevant to pediatric patients: photosensitivity reaction, dry mouth, hepatitis, thrombocytopenia, generalized edema, depression, pruritus, leukopenia, and blurred vision.

Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome

In clinical studies of Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, adverse reactions reported in 35 patients taking PROTONIX 80 mg/day to 240 mg/day for up to 2 years were similar to those reported in adult patients with GERD.

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse reactions have been identified during postapproval use of PROTONIX. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.

These adverse reactions are listed below by body system:

General Disorders and Administration Conditions: asthenia, fatigue, malaise

Hematologic: pancytopenia, agranulocytosis

Hepatobiliary Disorders: hepatocellular damage leading to jaundice and hepatic failure

Immune System Disorders: anaphylaxis (including anaphylactic shock), systemic lupus erythematosus

Infections and Infestations: Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea

Investigations: weight changes

Metabolism and Nutritional Disorders: hyponatremia, hypomagnesemia

Musculoskeletal Disorders: rhabdomyolysis, bone fracture

Nervous: ageusia, dysgeusia

Psychiatric Disorders: hallucination, confusion, insomnia, somnolence

Renal and Urinary Disorders: interstitial nephritis

Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue Disorders: severe dermatologic reactions (some fatal), including erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN, some fatal), angioedema (Quincke’s edema) and cutaneous lupus erythematosus

Overdose

The information provided in Overdose of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Overdose in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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Experience in patients taking very high doses of PROTONIX (greater than 240 mg) is limited. Spontaneous post-marketing reports of overdose are generally within the known safety profile of PROTONIX.

Pantoprazole is not removed by hemodialysis. In case of overdosage, treatment should be symptomatic and supportive.

Single oral doses of pantoprazole at 709 mg/kg, 798 mg/kg, and 887 mg/kg were lethal to mice, rats, and dogs, respectively. The symptoms of acute toxicity were hypoactivity, ataxia, hunched sitting, limb-splay, lateral position, segregation, absence of ear reflex, and tremor.

Pharmacodynamic properties

The information provided in Pharmacodynamic properties of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Pharmacodynamic properties in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension, 40 mg has been shown to be comparable to PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets in suppressing pentagastrin-stimulated MAO in patients (n = 49) with GERD and a history of EE. In this multicenter, pharmacodynamic crossover study, a 40 mg oral dose of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension administered in a teaspoonful of applesauce was compared with a 40 mg oral dose of PROTONIX Delayed- Release Tablets after administration of each formulation once daily for 7 days. Both medications were administered thirty minutes before breakfast. Pentagastrin-stimulated (MAO) was assessed from hour 23 to 24 at steady state.

Antisecretory Activity

Under maximal acid stimulatory conditions using pentagastrin, a dose-dependent decrease in gastric acid output occurs after a single dose of oral (20-80 mg) or a single dose of intravenous (20-120 mg) pantoprazole in healthy subjects. Pantoprazole given once daily results in increasing inhibition of gastric acid secretion. Following the initial oral dose of 40 mg pantoprazole, a 51% mean inhibition was achieved by 2.5 hours. With once-a-day dosing for 7 days, the mean inhibition was increased to 85%. Pantoprazole suppressed acid secretion in excess of 95% in half of the subjects. Acid secretion had returned to normal within a week after the last dose of pantoprazole; there was no evidence of rebound hypersecretion.

In a series of dose-response studies, pantoprazole, at oral doses ranging from 20 to 120 mg, caused dose-related increases in median basal gastric pH and in the percent of time gastric pH was > 3 and > 4. Treatment with 40 mg of pantoprazole produced significantly greater increases in gastric pH than the 20 mg dose. Doses higher than 40 mg (60, 80, 120 mg) did not result in further significant increases in median gastric pH. The effects of pantoprazole on median pH from one double-blind crossover study are shown in Table 5.

Table 5: Effect of Single Daily Doses of Oral Pantoprazole on Intragastric pH

Time Median pH on day 7
Placebo 20 mg 40 mg 80 mg
8 a.m. - 8 a.m.
(24 hours)
1.3 2.9* 3.8*# 3.9*#
8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
(Daytime)
1.6 3.2* 4.4*# 4.8*#
10 p.m. - 8 a.m.
(Nighttime)
1.2 2.1* 3.0* 2.6*
* Significantly different from placebo
# Significantly different from 20 mg

Serum Gastrin Effects

Fasting serum gastrin levels were assessed in two double-blind studies of the acute healing of erosive esophagitis (EE) in which 682 patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) received 10, 20, or 40 mg of PROTONIX for up to 8 weeks. At 4 weeks of treatment there was an increase in mean gastrin levels of 7%, 35%, and 72% over pretreatment values in the 10, 20, and 40 mg treatment groups, respectively. A similar increase in serum gastrin levels was noted at the 8-week visit with mean increases of 3%, 26%, and 84% for the three pantoprazole dose groups. Median serum gastrin levels remained within normal limits during maintenance therapy with PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets.

In long-term international studies involving over 800 patients, a 2- to 3-fold mean increase from the pretreatment fasting serum gastrin level was observed in the initial months of treatment with pantoprazole at doses of 40 mg per day during GERD maintenance studies and 40 mg or higher per day in patients with refractory GERD. Fasting serum gastrin levels generally remained at approximately 2 to 3 times baseline for up to 4 years of periodic followup in clinical trials.

Following short-term treatment with PROTONIX, elevated gastrin levels return to normal by at least 3 months.

Enterochromaffin-Like (ECL) Cell Effects

In 39 patients treated with oral pantoprazole 40 mg to 240 mg daily (majority receiving 40 mg to 80 mg) for up to 5 years, there was a moderate increase in ECL-cell density, starting after the first year of use, which appeared to plateau after 4 years.

In a nonclinical study in Sprague-Dawley rats, lifetime exposure (24 months) to pantoprazole at doses of 0.5 to 200 mg/kg/day resulted in dose-related increases in gastric ECL cell proliferation and gastric neuroendocrine (NE)-cell tumors. Gastric NE-cell tumors in rats may result from chronic elevation of serum gastrin concentrations. The high density of ECL cells in the rat stomach makes this species highly susceptible to the proliferative effects of elevated gastrin concentrations produced by PPIs. However, there were no observed elevations in serum gastrin following the administration of pantoprazole at a dose of 0.5 mg/kg/day. In a separate study, a gastric NE-cell tumor without concomitant ECL-cell proliferative changes was observed in 1 female rat following 12 months of dosing with pantoprazole at 5 mg/kg/day and a 9 month off-dose recovery.

Endocrine Effects

In a clinical pharmacology study, PROTONIX 40 mg given once daily for 2 weeks had no effect on the levels of the following hormones: cortisol, testosterone, triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), thyroid-stimulating hormone, thyronine-binding protein, parathyroid hormone, insulin, glucagon, renin, aldosterone, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, prolactin and growth hormone.

In a 1-year study of GERD patients treated with PROTONIX 40 mg or 20 mg, there were no changes from baseline in overall levels of T3, T4, and TSH.

Pharmacokinetic properties

The information provided in Pharmacokinetic properties of Acernix is based on data of another medicine with exactly the same composition as the Acernix of the medicine (Pantoprazole). Be careful and be sure to specify the information on the section Pharmacokinetic properties in the instructions to the drug Acernix directly from the package or from the pharmacist at the pharmacy.
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PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets are prepared as enteric-coated tablets so that absorption of pantoprazole begins only after the tablet leaves the stomach. Peak serum concentration (Cmax) and area under the serum concentration time curve (AUC) increase in a manner proportional to oral and intravenous doses from 10 mg to 80 mg. Pantoprazole does not accumulate, and its pharmacokinetics are unaltered with multiple daily dosing. Following oral or intravenous administration, the serum concentration of pantoprazole declines biexponentially, with a terminal elimination half-life of approximately one hour.

In extensive metabolizers with normal liver function receiving an oral dose of the entericcoated 40 mg pantoprazole tablet, the peak concentration (Cmax) is 2.5 μg/mL; the time to reach the peak concentration (tmax) is 2.5 h, and the mean total area under the plasma concentration versus time curve (AUC) is 4.8 μg•h/mL (range 1.4 to 13.3 μg•h/mL). Following intravenous administration of pantoprazole to extensive metabolizers, its total clearance is 7.6-14.0 L/h, and its apparent volume of distribution is 11.0-23.6 L.

A single oral dose of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension, 40 mg, was shown to be bioequivalent when administered to healthy subjects (N = 22) as granules sprinkled over a teaspoonful of applesauce, as granules mixed with apple juice, or mixed with apple juice followed by administration through a nasogastric tube. The plasma pharmacokinetic parameters from a crossover study in healthy subjects are summarized in Table 6.

Table 6: Pharmacokinetics Parameters (mean ± SD) of PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension at 40 mg

Pharmacokinetic Parameters Granules in Applesauce Granules in Apple Juice Granules in Nasogastric Tube
AUC (μg•hr/mL) 4.0 ± 1.5 4.0 ± 1.5 4.1 ± 1.7
Cmax (μg/mL) 2.0 ± 0.7 1.9 ± 0.5 2.2 ± 0.7
Tmax (hr)a 2.0 2.5 2.0
a Median values are reported for Tmax.

Absorption

After administration of a single or multiple oral 40 mg doses of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets, the peak plasma concentration of pantoprazole was achieved in approximately 2.5 hours, and Cmax was 2.5 μg/mL. Pantoprazole undergoes little first-pass metabolism, resulting in an absolute bioavailability of approximately 77%. Pantoprazole absorption is not affected by concomitant administration of antacids.

Administration of PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets with food may delay its absorption up to 2 hours or longer; however, the Cmax and the extent of pantoprazole absorption (AUC) are not altered. Thus, PROTONIX Delayed-Release Tablets may be taken without regard to timing of meals.

Administration of pantoprazole granules, 40 mg, with a high-fat meal delayed median time to peak plasma concentration by 2 hours. With a concomitant high-fat meal, the Cmax and AUC of pantoprazole granules, 40 mg, sprinkled on applesauce decreased by 51% and 29%, respectively. Thus, PROTONIX For Delayed-Release Oral Suspension should be taken approximately 30 minutes before a meal.

Distribution

The apparent volume of distribution of pantoprazole is approximately 11.0-23.6 L, distributing mainly in extracellular fluid. The serum protein binding of pantoprazole is about 98%, primarily to albumin.

Elimination

Metabolism

Pantoprazole is extensively metabolized in the liver through the cytochrome P450 (CYP) system. Pantoprazole metabolism is independent of the route of administration (intravenous or oral). The main metabolic pathway is demethylation, by CYP2C19, with subsequent sulfation; other metabolic pathways include oxidation by CYP3A4. There is no evidence that any of the pantoprazole metabolites have significant pharmacologic activity.

Excretion

After a single oral or intravenous dose of 14C-labeled pantoprazole to healthy, normal metabolizer subjects, approximately 71% of the dose was excreted in the urine, with 18% excreted in the feces through biliary excretion. There was no renal excretion of unchanged pantoprazole.