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Comparative Pharmacokinetic and Electrocardiographic Effects of Intratracheal and Intravenous Administration of Flecainide in Anesthetized Pigs

Stocco, Fernando G., BS*,†; Evaristo, Ederson, BS*,†; Silva, Anderson C., BS*,†; de Antonio, Victor Zandona, BS*,†; Pfeiffer, Juergen, MS; Rangachari, Narasimhan, MS§; Belardinelli, Luiz, MD§; Verrier, Richard L., PhD†,¶

Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology: September 2018 - Volume 72 - Issue 3 - p 129–135
doi: 10.1097/FJC.0000000000000605
Original Article

Abstract: We compared the pharmacokinetic (PK) profile and electrocardiographic (ECG) changes in response to intratracheal instillation of flecainide acetate into the left atrium and ventricle with intravenous (IV) flecainide acetate administration. In 12 closed-chest anesthetized Yorkshire pigs, we monitored the QRS complex and PR, JTc, and QTc intervals during sinus rhythm and correlated changes with venous plasma drug concentrations before and at 2, 5, 10, 15, and 30 minutes after drug administration. Intratracheal instillation of flecainide (0.75 and 1.5 mg/kg, rapid bolus) caused dose/concentration-dependent increases in the QRS complex duration of 10% and 19%, respectively, at 2 minutes, coinciding with peak venous plasma levels (1688 ± 177 and 2808 ± 217 ng/mL, respectively). IV infusion of flecainide (2 mg/kg) over 2 or 10 minutes similarly prolonged QRS complexes and PR intervals (both, P < 0.001). Intratracheal flecainide instillation increased PR interval briefly at 5 minutes. Neither intratracheal nor IV flecainide affected JTc or QTc intervals. Thus, the PK pattern of intratracheal instillation of flecainide is comparable to IV administration, although the absolute plasma concentrations were higher with IV infusion. Both modes of delivery elicited ECG changes that were consistent with the expected pharmacological activity of flecainide.

*Faculdade de Medicina, da Universidade de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil;

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA;

Scientific Research Partners, San Francisco, CA;

§InCarda Therapeutics, Newark, CA; and

Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Reprints: Richard L. Verrier, PhD, FHRS, FACC, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 99 Brookline Avenue, RN-301, Boston, MA 02215 (e-mail:

Supported by a grant from InCarda Therapeutics to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, RL Verrier, P.I.

N. Rangachari and J. Pfeiffer were employed by InCarda Therapeutics. L. Belardinelli is an employee of InCarda Therapeutics. The remaining authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Received March 11, 2018

Accepted May 11, 2018

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