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Wednesday 01 May 2002

Ziprasidone: the fifth atypical antipsychotic.

By: Caley CF, Cooper CK.

Ann Pharmacother 2002 May;36(5):839-51

OBJECTIVE: To review the pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, clinical efficacy, and adverse effects of ziprasidone as a treatment for schizophrenia. DATA SOURCES: Information was selected from a MEDLINE search (July 2000-October 2001) of English-language medical literature using ziprasidone as the search term. Manual searches of pertinent journal article references, request for medical information from Pfizer, and access of the Web site of the Food and Drug Administration were also performed. STUDY SELECTION: All available published information regarding the pertinent characteristics of ziprasidone were considered for selection. DATA EXTRACTION: Pharmacology and pharmacokinetic studies were selected to provide a comprehensive description of these characteristics. Clinical investigations were evaluated for design, sample size, diagnosis, duration, and outcome. Data from all investigations were selected by 1 author and reviewed by both authors. DATA SYNTHESIS: Ziprasidone is a benzisothiazolyl piperazine-type atypical antipsychotic that shares the serotonin(2A)/dopamine(2) (5-HT(2A)/D(2)) profile of the available atypical antipsychotics. Ziprasidone has demonstrated in vitro activity as a 5-HT(1A) receptor agonist and as a very weak inhibitor of serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake. These data do not support ziprasidone as being a clinically meaningful inhibitor of serotonin/norepinephrine reuptake. Oral bioavailability of ziprasidone taken with food is approximately 60%, half-life is approximately 6-7 hours, and protein binding is extensive at >99%. Twelve metabolites have been identified, yet only 4 of these are considered to be primary metabolites. Metabolism of ziprasidone by aldehyde oxidase produces its only metabolite with potential pharmacologic activity; CYP3A4 also contributes to the metabolism of ziprasidone. Clinical studies support ziprasidone as efficacious for the treatment of patients with acute exacerbations of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder. Daily doses permitted in these clinical trials ranged from 40 to 160 mg, but only doses between 120 and 160 mg/d have been superior to placebo. Future research efforts should be directed toward refractory schizophrenia, cognitive impairment in schizophrenia, affective and anxiety symptoms associated with schizoaffective disorder, and bipolar disorder. Adverse effect characteristics of ziprasidone commonly include headache, nausea, and somnolence; infrequent effects include extrapyramidal symptoms and weight gain. Ziprasidone has been reported to cause an average QTc prolongation of approximately 20 msec; there have only been 2 patients (0.06%) reported by the manufacturer to have a measured QTc interval >500 msec. CONCLUSIONS: Ziprasidone is a safe and efficacious atypical antipsychotic for the acute management of schizophrenia. Efficacy data and most safety data for ziprasidone support its use as a first-line treatment for schizophrenia; however, its potential effects on ventricular repolarization relegate it to second-line status in patients with comorbid cardiovascular risks.

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