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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Comparative cardiac toxicity of the i.v. administered benzimidazole pyridazinon derivative Pimobendan and its enantiomers in female Beagle dogs.

The new positive-inotropic and vasodilatating drug Pimobendan (racemate), 4,5-dihydro-6-[2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-1H-benzimidazole-5-yl]-5-methyl-3 (2-H)-pyridazinone, and its enantiomers were investigated with regard to their cardiotoxicity in young adult female Chbb: Beagle dogs. The racemate and the (-)-isomer (eutomer) were intravenously injected once daily for 4 consecutive weeks at doses of 0.25, 0.75 and 2.25 mg/kg, and the (+)-isomer (distomer) at doses of 0.75, 2.25 and 6.75 mg/kg, respectively. Clinical signs, hematological, clinico-chemical, ophthalmologic and electrophysiological parameters were monitored. Plasma concentration-time profiles of the parent compound and the major metabolite UD-CG 212 were established on day 1 and in week 4 using an HPLC assay. Partial areas under the curves from 0.08 h to 1 h (AUC0.08-1 h) as well as the plasma concentration at time point 0.5 h/C0.5 h) were used for statistical calculations. Necropsy and histopathologic examination were performed after completion of the treatment period. Reduction of the blood pressure occurred already at low dosages of the racemate and the eutomer, but only in high dose distomer-treated animals. A tendency to tachycardia developed only in high dose females receiving the racemate. Consequently, with respect to the pharmacological effects and the adverse events, the racemate is equivalent to the eutomer. Plasma concentrations of parent compound and metabolite were dose-linear for racemate, eutomer and distomer within the dose range 0.25-2.25 mg/kg.d at both time points. There were no significant effects of form or repeated administration. A moderate increase of AUC0.08 1 h and C0.5 h could be seen on day 23 for the distomer indicating a stereoselektive metabolism of the latter. Histologic changes of the valvular and parietal endocardium being termed jet lesion were observed after administration of the racemate (> or = 0.75 mg/kg.d) and the eutomer (> or = 0.25 mg/kg.d) at distinctly lower doses than after the distomer (> or = 2.25 mg/kg.d). Furthermore, extent and severity of the morphologic lesions were found to be higher in dogs exposed to the racemate or the eutomer than in those receiving the distomer. The results gave evidence that the so-called cardiotoxicity by Pimobendan in dogs resulted from the exaggerated pharmacodynamic effect but not from the chemical nature of the compound per se. They corroborate also the previously raised assumption that the exaggerated pharmacodynamic activity of cardiotonic compounds in the broadest sense accounts for their morphologic adverse effects in experimental animals.[1]


  1. Comparative cardiac toxicity of the i.v. administered benzimidazole pyridazinon derivative Pimobendan and its enantiomers in female Beagle dogs. Schneider, P., Güttner, J., Eckenfels, A., Heinzel, G., von Nicolai, H., Trieb, G., Lehmann, H. Experimental and toxicologic pathology : official journal of the Gesellschaft für Toxikologische Pathologie. (1997) [Pubmed]
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