Background: Warfarin dosing is difficult to establish because of considerable interindividual variation. Thus, warfarin pharmacogenetics have attracted particular interest in relation to appropriate control of anticoagulation.
Methods and results: The 200 eligible subjects were chosen from participants in a hospital cohort. Performance of a pharmacogenetic algorithm recently developed by the International Warfarin Pharmacogenetics Consortium (IWPC) was tested and compared with a clinical algorithm (without genotype data) by calculating the percentage of patients for whom the predicted dose deviated by less than 7 mg/week (1 mg/day) from the actual dose. The pharmacogenetic algorithm accurately identified a significantly (P<0.05) larger proportion of patients to achieve the target international normalized ratio than did the clinical algorithm (68% vs 36% for a low-dose group; and 21% vs 0% for a high-dose group). Also, an increase in warfarin dosage was found to be appropriate for the current status of alcohol drinking (4 mg/week, as against non-drinking) and smoking (3.3 mg/week, as against non-smoking).
Conclusions: The IWPC pharmacogenetic algorithm has clinical application, particularly in identifying Japanese patients who require a low dosage of warfarin and are at greater risk of excessive anticoagulation.