Alvimopan* (ADL 8-2698) is a
novel peripheral opioid antagonist

Schmidt WK.
Adolor Corporation, Exton,
Pennsylvania 19341-1127, USA.
Am J Surg 2001 Nov;182(5A Suppl):11S-18S


Alvimopan (ADL 8-2698; Adolor Corporation, Exton, PA, USA) is a novel, peripherally restricted opioid antagonist. After oral administration, it has activity specific to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. ADL 8-2698 has low systemic absorption and a high affinity for mu-opioid receptors. In healthy subjects, ADL 8-2698 antagonized loperamide-induced changes in GI transit and prevented morphine-induced delays in oral-cecal transit time without antagonizing centrally mediated opioid effects, such as analgesia or pupillary constriction. In the treatment of opioid naive patients who underwent surgery and received opioids for acute pain, oral ADL 8-2698 (6.0 mg) improved the management of postoperative ileus (POI) by shortening the time to achieve normal bowel function and, ultimately, hospital stay. Postoperative nausea and vomiting and the overall incidence of all GI side effects were reduced in patients treated with ADL 8-2698 for POI. Analgesia was not compromised, because there were no changes in median opioid consumption or Visual Analog Scale (VAS) pain scores in patients treated with ADL 8-2698 versus patients treated with placebo. No drug-related side effects were observed in acute pain postsurgical patients in the initial POI study. In patients treated with opioids for chronic pain or opioid addiction, lower doses of oral ADL 8-2698 (0.5 to 3.0 mg) reversed opioid bowel dysfunction (OBD) and normalized GI activity. These effects were evident without compromising opioid analgesia or inducing central nervous system symptoms of withdrawal. Some chronic opioid patients receiving apparently supramaximal doses of ADL 8-2698 (> or = 3.0 mg) reported localized GI side effects, possibly indicative of a localized GI withdrawal response. The most common side effects of ADL 8-2698 in chronic pain patients with OBD were abdominal pain, flatulence, and diarrhea. These effects were not observed in most OBD patients receiving lower doses of ADL 8-2698. Overall, ADL 8-2698 was well tolerated in clinical trials. Further studies to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ADL 8-2698 in clinical practice are in progress.
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