Irinotecan (Camptosar)

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General information

Class/mechanism: Topoisomerase I inhibitor; derivative of camptothecin, which interferes with topoisomerase I's normal action of relieving torsional strain in DNA by creating reversible single-strand breaks. Irinotecan and its active metabolite SN-38 bind to the topoisomerase I & DNA complex and interfere with ligation of these single-strand breaks. Failure to repair these breaks eventually leads to double-strand DNA damage, which disrupts cell proliferation and leads to cell death.[1][2]
Route: IV
Extravasation: irritant

For conciseness and simplicity, currently will focus on treatment regimens and not list information such as: renal/hepatic dose adjustments, metabolism (including CYP450), excretion, monitoring parameters (although this will be considered for checklists), or manufacturer. Instead, for the most current information, please refer to your preferred pharmacopeias such as Micromedex, Lexicomp, UpToDate (courtesy of Lexicomp), or the prescribing information.[1]

Diseases for which it is used

Patient drug information

History of changes in FDA indication

  • 6/14/1996: Initial FDA approval for the treatment of patients with metastatic carcinoma of the colon or rectum whose disease has recurred or progressed following 5-FU-based therapy.
  • 4/20/2000: Colon cancer indication revised:

Also known as

  • Code names: Camptothecin-11, CPT-11, U-101440E
  • Brand names: Axinotecan, Biotecan, Biskam, Campto, Campostar, Camptosar, Elinatecan, Faultenocan, Irenax, Irinogen, Irinomedac, Irinotel, Irinotesin, Irnocam, Itoxaril, Linatecan, Onivyde, Satigene, Tecnotecan, Tekamen, Toptecin, Trinotecan, Winol