Droxidopa for the treatment of neurogenic orthostatic hypotension in neurodegenerative diseases.

07:00 EST 7th February 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Droxidopa for the treatment of neurogenic orthostatic hypotension in neurodegenerative diseases."

L-threo-3,4-dihydroxyphenylserine (droxidopa), a pro-drug metabolized to norepinephrine in nerve endings and other tissues, has been commercially available in Japan since 1989 for treating orthostatic hypotension symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients with a Hoehn & Yahr stage III rating, as well as patients with Multiple System Atrophy (MSA), familial amyloid polyneuropathy, and hemodialysis. Recently, the FDA has approved its use in symptomatic neurogenic orthostatic hypotension (NOH). Areas covered: The authors review the effects of droxidopa in NOH with a focus on the neurodegenerative diseases PD, MSA, and pure autonomic failure (PAF). Expert opinion: A few small and short placebo-controlled clinical trials in NOH showed significant reductions in the manometric drop in blood pressure (BP) after posture changes or meals. Larger Phase III studies showed conflicting results, with two out of four trials meeting their primary outcome and thus suggesting a positive yet short-lasting effect of the drug on OH Questionnaire composite score, light-headedness/dizziness score, and standing BP during the first two treatment-weeks. Results appear essentially similar in PD, MSA, and PAF. The FDA granted droxidopa approval in the frame of an 'accelerated approval program' provided further studies are conducted to assess its long-term effects on OH symptoms.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Expert opinion on pharmacotherapy
ISSN: 1744-7666
Pages: 1-11


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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

Symptoms of cerebral hypoperfusion or autonomic overaction which develop while the subject is standing, but are relieved on recumbency. Types of this include NEUROCARDIOGENIC SYNCOPE; POSTURAL ORTHOSTATIC TACHYCARDIA SYNDROME; and neurogenic ORTHOSTATIC HYPOTENSION. (From Noseworthy, JH., Neurological Therapeutics Principles and Practice, 2007, p2575-2576)

A precursor of noradrenaline that is used in the treatment of parkinsonism. The racemic form (DL-threo-3,4-dihydroxyphenylserine) has also been used, and has been investigated in the treatment of orthostatic hypotension. There is a deficit of noradrenaline as well as of dopamine in Parkinson's disease and it has been proposed that this underlies the sudden transient freezing seen usually in advanced disease. Administration of DL-threo-3,4-dihydroxyphenylserine has been claimed to result in an improvement in this phenomenon but controlled studies have failed to demonstrate improvement. (Reynolds JEF(Ed): Martindale: The Extra Pharmacopoeia (electronic version). Micromedex, Inc, Englewood, CO, 1995)

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A syndrome of ORTHOSTATIC INTOLERANCE combined with excessive upright TACHYCARDIA, and usually without associated ORTHOSTATIC HYPOTENSION. All variants have in common an excessively reduced venous return to the heart (central HYPOVOLEMIA) while upright.

An autosomal disorder of the peripheral and autonomic nervous systems limited to individuals of Ashkenazic Jewish descent. Clinical manifestations are present at birth and include diminished lacrimation, defective thermoregulation, orthostatic hypotension (HYPOTENSION, ORTHOSTATIC), fixed pupils, excessive SWEATING, loss of pain and temperature sensation, and absent reflexes. Pathologic features include reduced numbers of small diameter peripheral nerve fibers and autonomic ganglion neurons. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p1348; Nat Genet 1993;4(2):160-4)

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