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Comprehensive analysis of cardiac function, blood biomarkers and histopathology for milrinone-induced cardiotoxicity in cynomolgus monkeys


Chiba K, Ishizaka T, Yoshimatsu Y, Mikamoto K, Maeda Y, Iguchi T, Shirai M, Yamaguchi T, Goto K, Sakurai K, Tamai S, Kataoka H, Hasegawa M and Mori K

J Pharmacol Toxicol Methods. 2020 Apr 27:106870



The objective of this study was to elucidate the underlying cardiotoxic mechanism of milrinone, a cAMP phosphodiesterase 3 inhibitor, by evaluating cardiac functions, blood biomarkers including cardiac troponin I (cTnI), microRNAs (miR-1, miR-133a and miR-499a) and various endogenous metabolites, and histopathology in conscious cynomolgus monkeys. Milrinone at doses of 0, 3 and 30 mg/kg were orally administered to monkeys (n = 3-4/group), and the endpoints were evaluated 1 to 24 h post-dosing. Milrinone caused myocardial injuries characterized by myocardial degeneration/necrosis, cell infiltration and hemorrhage 24 h after drug administration. Cardiac functional analysis revealed that milrinone dose-dependently increased the maximum upstroke velocity of the left ventricular pressure and heart rate, and decreased the QA interval and systemic blood pressure 1-4 h post-dosing, being associated with pharmacological action of the drug. In the blood biomarker analysis, only plasma cTnI was dose-dependently increased 4-7 h after drug administration, suggesting that cTnI is the most sensitive biomarker for early detection of milrinone-induced myocardial injuries. In the metabolomics analysis, high dose of milrinone induced transient changes in lipid metabolism, amino acid utilization and oxidative stress, together with the pharmacological action of increased cAMP and lipolysis 1 h post-dosing before the myocardial injuries were manifested by increased cTnI levels. Taken together, milrinone showed acute positive inotropic and multiple metabolic changes including excessive pharmacological actions, resulting in myocardial injuries. Furthermore, a comprehensive analysis of cardiac functions, blood biomarkers and histopathology can provide more appropriate information for overall assessment of preclinical cardiovascular safety.

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