Assessing bioequivalence of generic modified-release antiepileptic drugs

Emily L. Johnson, Yi Ting Chang, Barbara Davit, Barry E. Gidal, Gregory L. Krauss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to determine how closely generic modified-release antiepileptic drugs (MR-AEDs) resemble reference (brand) formulations by comparing peak concentrations (Cmax), total absorption (area under the curve [AUC]), time to Cmax (Tmax), intersubject variability, and food effects between generic and reference products. Methods: We tabulated Cmax and AUC data from the bioequivalence (BE) studies used to support the approvals of generic Food and Drug Administration-approved MR-AEDs. We compared differences in 90% confidence intervals of the generic/reference AUC and Cmax geometric mean ratios, and intersubject variability, Tmax and delivery profiles and food effects. Results: Forty-two MR-AED formulations were studied in 3,175 healthy participants without epilepsy in 97 BE studies. BE ratios for AUC and Cmax were similar between most generic and reference products: AUC ratios varied by >15% in 11.4% of BE studies; Cmax varied by >15% in 25.8% of studies. Tmax was more variable, with >30% difference in 13 studies (usually delayed in the fed compared to fasting BE studies). Generic and reference MR products had similar intersubject variability. Immediate-release AEDs showed less intersubject variability in AUC than did MR-AEDs. Conclusions: Most generic and reference MR-AEDs have similar AUC and Cmax values. Ratios for some products, however, are near acceptance limits and Tmax values may vary. Food effects are common with MR-AED products. High variability in pharmacokinetic values for once-a-day MR-AEDs suggests their major advantage compared to immediate-release AED formulations may be the convenience of less frequent dosing to improve adherence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1597-1604
Number of pages8
Issue number17
StatePublished - Apr 26 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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