Meta-analysis of inter-patient pharmacokinetic variability of liposomal and non-liposomal anticancer agents

Nanomedicine. 2014 Jan;10(1):109-17. doi: 10.1016/j.nano.2013.07.005. Epub 2013 Jul 24.


A meta-analysis was conducted to evaluate the inter-patient pharmacokinetic (PK) variability of liposomal and small molecule (SM) anticancer agents. Inter-patient PK variability of 9 liposomal and SM formulations of the same drug was evaluated. PK variability was measured as coefficient of variance (CV%) of area under the plasma concentration versus time curve (AUC) and the fold-difference between AUCmax and AUCmin (AUC range). CV% of AUC and AUC ranges were 2.7-fold (P<0.001) and 16.7-fold (P=0.13) greater, respectively, for liposomal compared with SM drugs. There was an inverse linear relationship between the clearance (CL) of liposomal agents and PK variability with a lower CL associated with greater PK variability (R(2)=0.39). PK variability of liposomal agents was greater when evaluated from 0-336 h compared with 0-24h. PK variability of liposomes is significantly greater than SM. The factors associated with the PK variability of liposomal agents need to be evaluated.

From the clinical editor: In this meta-analysis, the inter-patient pharmacokinetic variability of 9 liposomal and small molecule anti-cancer agents was studied. The authors determined that several parameters are in favor of the liposomal formulation; however, the PK variability of the formulation was higher compared with small molecule agents, the reason for which remains to be determined in future studies.

Keywords: CKD-602; Liposomes; Pharmacokinetic; S-CKD602; Sampling schema; Variability.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Agents / blood
  • Antineoplastic Agents / chemistry
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacokinetics*
  • Area Under Curve
  • Camptothecin / administration & dosage
  • Camptothecin / blood
  • Camptothecin / pharmacokinetics
  • Humans
  • Liposomes / administration & dosage*
  • Liposomes / blood
  • Liposomes / chemistry
  • Neoplasms / blood
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Liposomes
  • Camptothecin