Bodyweight-based tacrolimus dosing followed by therapeutic drug monitoring is standard clinical care after renal transplantation. However, after transplantation, a meager 38% of patients are on target at first steady-state and it can take up to 3 weeks to reach the target tacrolimus predose concentration (C0). Tacrolimus underexposure and overexposure is associated with an increased risk of rejection and drug-related toxicity, respectively. To minimize subtherapeutic and supratherapeutic tacrolimus exposure in the immediate post-transplant phase, a previously developed dosing algorithm to predict an individual’s tacrolimus starting dose was tested prospectively. In this single-arm, prospective, therapeutic intervention trial, 60 de novo kidney transplant recipients received a tacrolimus starting dose based on a dosing algorithm instead of a standard, bodyweight-based dose. The algorithm included cytochrome P450 (CYP)3A4 and CYP3A5 genotype, body surface area, and age as covariates. The target tacrolimus C0, measured for the first time at day 3, was 7.5–12.5 ng/mL. Between February 23, 2019, and July 7, 2020, 60 patients were included. One patient was excluded because of a protocol violation. On day 3 post-transplantation, 34 of 59 patients (58%, 90% CI 47–68%) had a tacrolimus C0 within the therapeutic range. Markedly subtherapeutic (< 5.0 ng/mL) and supratherapeutic (> 20 ng/mL) tacrolimus concentrations were observed in 7% and 3% of the patients, respectively. Biopsy-proven acute rejection occurred in three patients (5%). In conclusion, algorithm-based tacrolimus dosing leads to the achievement of the tacrolimus target C0 in as many as 58% of the patients on day 3 after kidney transplantation.,
Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Department of Internal Medicine

Francke, M.I. (Marith I.), Andrews, L.M, Le, H.L. (Hoang Lan), van de Wetering, J, Clahsen-van Groningen, M.C, van Gelder, T, … Hesselink, D.A. (2021). Avoiding Tacrolimus Underexposure and Overexposure with a Dosing Algorithm for Renal Transplant Recipients: A Single Arm Prospective Intervention Trial. Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. doi:10.1002/cpt.2163