Pharmacokinetics of cyclophosphamide and its metabolites in paediatric patients receiving high-dose myeloablative therapy


Introduction: In order to better understand the impact of high-dose on the pharmacokinetics and metabolism of cyclophosphamide, a pharmacological study was performed in children with malignant mesenchymal tumours with metastatic disease.

Methods: Patients received four courses of chemotherapy including two courses of cyclophosphamide. Plasma concentrations of cyclophosphamide and the metabolites 4-ketocyclophosphamide, dechloroethylcyclophosphamide and carboxyphosphamide were determined on days 1, 2 and 3 of each course. A population pharmacokinetic model for cyclophosphamide was developed using non-linear mixed effects modelling and metabolite AUC values were compared between days and courses.

Results: Data were available on 21 cyclophosphamide courses from 15 patients. A one compartment model, incorporating a term in surface area for both CL and V, best described cyclophosphamide pharmacokinetics. Typical CL and V on day 1 of treatment for a patient with a SA of 1.4m(2) were 4.3 L/h and 28.5L, respectively. On days 2 and 3 CL increased by 88% (95% CI, 72-105%) and 125% (95% CI, 108-145%) over day 1 levels; V increased by 14% (95% CI, 5-23%) on days 2 and 3. V tended to be larger for males than similarly sized females but no effect of age was found upon CL or V. Significant increases in metabolite AUCs were observed on days 2 and 3 compared to day 1 and a significant increase in CXCP AUC from course 1 to course 3.

Conclusion: Administration of high-dose cyclophosphamide over several days results in an increase in metabolism, possibly by induction of the activation pathway. This induction is effectively reversed following a four week period between cyclophosphamide doses. The degree of intersubject variation in cyclophosphamide elimination is largely accounted for by body surface area and is less than previously reported.

European Journal of Cancer 2011; 47(10):1556-1563