Background: Previous studies have reported marked interindividual variation in factor VIII (FVIII) clearance in patients with hemophilia (PWH) and proposed a number of factors that influence this heterogeneity.
Objectives: To investigate the importance of the clearance rates of endogenous von Willebrand factor (VWF) compared with those of other FVIII half-life modifiers in adult PWH.
Methods: The half-life of recombinant FVIII was determined in a cohort of 61 adult PWH. A range of reported modifiers of FVIII clearance was assessed (including plasma VWF:antigen and VWF propeptide levels; VWF-FVIII binding capacity; ABO blood group; and nonneutralizing anti-FVIII antibodies). The FVIII-binding region of the VWF gene was sequenced. Finally, the effects of variation in FVIII half-life on clinical phenotype were investigated.
Results: We demonstrated that heterogeneity in the clearance of endogenous plasma VWF is a key determinant of variable FVIII half-life in PWH. Both ABO blood group and age significantly impact FVIII clearance. The effect of ABO blood group on FVIII half-life in PWH is modulated entirely through its effect on the clearance rates of endogenous VWF. In contrast, the age-related effect on FVIII clearance is, at least in part, VWF independent. In contrast to previous studies, no major effects of variation in VWF-FVIII binding affinity on FVIII clearance were observed. Although high-titer immunoglobulin G antibodies (≥1:80) were observed in 26% of PWH, these did not impact FVIII half-life. Importantly, the annual FVIII usage (IU/kg/y) was significantly (p = .0035) increased in patients with an FVIII half-life of <12 hours.
Conclusion: Our data demonstrate that heterogeneity in the half-life of FVIII concentrates in patients with hemophilia A is primarily attributable to variability in the clearance of endogenous VWF.
Keywords: ABO blood group; FVIII pharmacokinetics; factor VIII; von Willebrand factor.
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