Safety and tolerability of cariprazine in patients with acute exacerbation of schizophrenia: a pooled analysis of four phase II/III randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies

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Cariprazine, a potent dopamine D3 and D2 receptor partial agonist antipsychotic with preferential binding to D3 receptors, is Food and Drug Administration approved for treating schizophrenia and manic or mixed episodes of bipolar I disorder. A post-hoc safety/tolerability analysis of data from the four acute trials in the cariprazine schizophrenia clinical development program (NCT00404573; NCT00694707; NCT01104766; NCT01104779) was carried out using the overall safety population (all patients who received ≥1 dose of study drug) and modal daily dose subgroups (1.5–3, 4.5–6, and 9–12 mg/day). These exploratory findings were summarized using descriptive statistics. Cariprazine was generally well tolerated. The incidence of treatment-emergent adverse events versus placebo was similar for cariprazine 1.5–3 mg/day and higher for cariprazine 4.5–6 and 9–12 mg/day; a dose–response relationship was observed for akathisia, extrapyramidal symptoms, and diastolic blood pressure. The mean changes in metabolic parameters were generally similar in cariprazine-treated and placebo-treated patients. There was no prolactin level increase or QTc value greater than 500 ms; small increases in mean body weight (∼1to2 kg) versus placebo were observed. Within the Food and Drug Administration-approved dose range (1.5−6 mg/day), cariprazine was generally safe and well tolerated in patients with schizophrenia.

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