April 26, 2017
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Boniva Injection

"Feb. 8, 2012 -- Some drugs used to strengthen bones may increase the risk of an unusual type of fracture if patients take them for many years, a new study shows.

Overall, most people with osteoporosis, a loss of bone density over time"...


Boniva Injection


Mechanism Of Action

The action of ibandronate on bone is based on its affinity for hydroxyapatite, which is part of the mineral matrix of bone. Ibandronate inhibits osteoclast activity and reduces bone resorption and turnover. In postmenopausal women, it reduces the elevated rate of bone turnover, leading to, on average, a net gain in bone mass.


In studies of postmenopausal women, BONIVA Injection at doses of 0.5 mg to 3 mg produced biochemical changes indicative of inhibition of bone resorption, including decreases of biochemical markers of bone collagen degradation (cross-linked C-telopeptide of Type I collagen [CTX]). Changes in markers of bone formation (osteocalcin) were observed later than changes in resorption markers, as expected, due to the coupled nature of bone resorption and formation.

Year 1 results from an efficacy and safety study comparing BONIVA Injection 3 mg every 3 months and BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet demonstrated that both dosing regimens significantly suppressed serum CTX levels at Months 3, 6, and 12. The median pre-dose or trough serum CTX levels in the intent-to-treat population reached a nadir of 57% (BONIVA Injection) and 62% (BONIVA 2.5 mg tablets) below baseline values by Month 6, and remained stable at Month 12 of treatment.



Area under the serum ibandronate concentrations versus time curve increases in a dose proportional manner after administration of 2 mg to 6 mg by intravenous injection.

After administration, ibandronate either rapidly binds to bone or is excreted into urine. In humans, the apparent terminal volume of distribution is at least 90 L, and the amount of dose removed from the circulation into the bone is estimated to be 40% to 50% of the circulating dose. In one study, in vitro protein binding in human serum was approximately 86% over an ibandronate concentration range of 20 to 2000 ng/mL (approximate range of maximum serum ibandronate concentrations upon intravenous bolus administration).


There is no evidence that ibandronate is metabolized in humans. Ibandronate does not inhibit human P450 1A2, 2A6, 2C9, 2C19, 2D6, 2E1, and 3A4 isozymes in vitro.

Ibandronate does not undergo hepatic metabolism and does not inhibit the hepatic cytochrome P450 system. Ibandronate is eliminated by renal excretion. Based on a rat study, the ibandronate secretory pathway does not appear to include known acidic or basic transport systems involved in the excretion of other drugs.


The portion of ibandronate that is not removed from the circulation via bone absorption is eliminated unchanged by the kidney (approximately 50% to 60% of the administered intravenous dose).

The plasma elimination of ibandronate is multiphasic. Its renal clearance and distribution into bone accounts for a rapid and early decline in plasma concentrations, reaching 10% of Cmax within 3 or 8 hours after intravenous or oral administration, respectively. This is followed by a slower clearance phase as ibandronate redistributes back into the blood from bone. The observed apparent terminal half-life for ibandronate is generally dependent on the dose studied and on assay sensitivity. The observed apparent terminal half-life for intravenous 2 and 4 mg ibandronate after 2 hours of infusion ranges from 4.6 to 15.3 hours and 5 to 25.5 hours, respectively.

Following intravenous administration, total clearance of ibandronate is low, with average values in the range 84 to 160 mL/min. Renal clearance (about 60 mL/min in healthy postmenopausal women) accounts for 50% to 60% of total clearance and is related to creatinine clearance. The difference between the apparent total and renal clearances likely reflects bone uptake of the drug.

Pharmacokinetics in Specific Populations


The pharmacokinetics of ibandronate have not been studied in patients less than 18 years of age.


The pharmacokinetics of ibandronate are similar in both men and women.


Since ibandronate is not known to be metabolized, the only difference in ibandronate elimination for geriatric patients versus younger patients is expected to relate to progressive age-related changes in renal function [see Use In Specific Populations].


Pharmacokinetic differences due to race have not been studied.

Renal Impairment

Renal clearance of ibandronate in patients with various degrees of renal impairment is linearly related to creatinine clearance (CLcr).

Following a single dose of 0.5 mg ibandronate by intravenous administration, patients with creatinine clearance 40 to 70 mL/min had 55% higher exposure (AUC∞) than the exposure observed in patients with creatinine clearance higher than 90 mL/min. Patients with severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance below 30 mL/min) had more than a two-fold increase in exposure compared to the exposure for patients with creatinine clearance equal to or higher than 80 mL/min [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION and Use In Specific Populations].

Hepatic Impairment

No studies have been performed to assess the pharmacokinetics of ibandronate in patients with hepatic impairment since ibandronate is not metabolized in the human liver.

Drug Interaction


A pharmacokinetic interaction study in multiple myeloma patients demonstrated that intravenous melphalan (10 mg/m²) and oral prednisolone (60 mg/m²) did not interact with 6 mg ibandronate upon intravenous coadministration. Ibandronate did not interact with melphalan or prednisolone.

Tamoxifen A pharmacokinetic interaction study in healthy postmenopausal women demonstrated that there was no interaction between oral 30 mg tamoxifen and intravenous 2 mg ibandronate.

Animal Pharmacology

Animal studies have shown that ibandronate is an inhibitor of osteoclast-mediated bone resorption. In the Schenk assay in growing rats, ibandronate inhibited bone resorption and increased bone volume, based on histologic examination of the tibial metaphyses. There was no evidence of impaired mineralization at the highest dose of 5 mg/kg/day (subcutaneously), which is 1000 times the lowest antiresorptive dose of 0.005 mg/kg/day in this model, and 5000 times the optimal antiresorptive dose of 0.001 mg/kg/day in the aged ovariectomized rat. This indicates that BONIVA Injection administered at a therapeutic dose is unlikely to induce osteomalacia.

Long-term daily or intermittent administration of ibandronate to ovariectomized rats or monkeys was associated with suppression of bone turnover and increases in bone mass. Vertebral BMD, trabecular density, and biomechanical strength were increased dose-dependently in rats and monkeys, at doses up to 8 to 4 times the human intravenous dose of 3 mg every 3 months, based on cumulative dose normalized for body surface area (mg/m²) and AUC comparison, respectively. Ibandronate maintained the positive correlation between bone mass and strength at the ulna and femoral neck. New bone formed in the presence of ibandronate had normal histologic structure and did not show mineralization defects.

Clinical Studies

Treatment Of Postmenopausal Osteoporosis

Quarterly Intravenous Injection

The effectiveness and safety of BONIVA Injection 3 mg once every 3 months were demonstrated in a randomized, double-blind, multinational, noninferiority study in 1358 women with postmenopausal osteoporosis (L2-L4 lumbar spine BMD, T-score below -2.5 SD at baseline). The control group received BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablets. The primary efficacy parameter was the relative change from baseline to 1 year of treatment in lumbar spine BMD, which was compared between the intravenous injection and the daily oral treatment groups. All patients received 400 international units vitamin D and 500 mg calcium supplementation per day.

Effect on BMD

In the intent-to-treat (ITT) efficacy analysis, the least-squares mean increase at 1 year in lumbar spine BMD in patients (n=429) treated with BONIVA Injection 3 mg once every 3 months (4.5%) was statistically superior to that in patients (n=434) treated with daily oral tablets (3.5%). The mean difference between groups was 1.1% (95% confidence interval: 0.5%, 1.6%; p < 0.001; see Figure 1). The mean increase from baseline in total hip BMD at 1 year was 2.1% in the BONIVA Injection 3 mg once every 3 months group and 1.5% in the BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet group. Consistently higher BMD increases at the femoral neck and trochanter were also observed following BONIVA Injection 3 mg once every 3 months compared to BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet.

Figure 1 : Mean Percent Change (95% Confidence Interval) from Baseline in Lumbar Spine BMD at One Year in Patients Treated with BONIVA 2.5 mg Daily Oral Tablet or BONIVA Injection 3 mg Once Every 3 Months

Mean Percent Change (95% Confidence Interval) from Baseline in Lumbar Spine BMD - Illustration

Bone Histology

The histological analysis of bone biopsies after 22 months of treatment with 3 mg intravenous ibandronate every 3 months (n=30) or 23 months of treatment with 2 mg intravenous ibandronate every 2 months (n=27) in women with postmenopausal osteoporosis showed bone of normal quality and no indication of a mineralization defect.

Daily Oral Tablets

The effectiveness and safety of BONIVA daily oral tablets were demonstrated in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multinational study (Treatment Study) of 2946 women aged 55 to 80 years, who were on average 21 years postmenopause, who had a lumbar spine BMD 2 to 5 SD below the premenopausal mean (Tscore) in at least one vertebra [L1-L4], and who had one to four prevalent vertebral fractures. BONIVA was evaluated at oral doses of 2.5 mg daily and 20 mg intermittently. The main outcome measure was the occurrence of new radiographically diagnosed, vertebral fractures after 3 years of treatment. The diagnosis of an incident vertebral fracture was based on both qualitative diagnosis by the radiologist and quantitative morphometric criterion. The morphometric criterion required the dual occurrence of two events: a relative height ratio or relative height reduction in a vertebral body of at least 20%, together with at least a 4 mm absolute decrease in height. All women received 400 international units vitamin D and 500 mg calcium supplementation per day.

Effect on Vertebral Fracture

BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet significantly reduced the incidence of new vertebral fractures compared to placebo. Over the course of the 3-year study, the risk for new vertebral fracture was 9.6% in the placebo-treated women and 4.7% in the women treated with BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet (p < 0.001) (see Table 3).

Table 3 : Effect of BONIVA Daily Oral Tablet on the Incidence of Vertebral Fracture in the 3-Year Osteoporosis Treatment Study*

  Proportion of Patients with Fracture (%)
BONIVA 2.5 mg Daily
Absolute Risk Reduction (%) 95% CI Relative Risk Reduction (%) 95% CI
New Vertebral Fracture 0-3 Year 9.6 4.7 4.9
(2.3, 7.4)
52 **
(29, 68)
New and Worsening Vertebral Fracture*** 0-3 Year 10.4 5.1 5.3
(2.6, 7.9)
(30, 67)
Clinical (Symptomatic) Vertebral Fracture 0-3 Year 5.3 2.8 2.5
(0.6, 4.5)
(14, 69)
*The endpoint value is the value at the study's last time point, 3 years, for all patients who had a fracture identified at that time; otherwise, the last postbaseline value prior to the study's last time point is used.
**p=0.0003 vs. placebo
***“Worsening vertebral fracture” defined as a new fracture in a vertebral body with a prevalent fracture

Effect on Nonvertebral Fractures

BONIVA 2.5 mg daily did not reduce the incidence of nonvertebral fractures (secondary efficacy measure). There was a similar number of nonvertebral osteoporotic fractures at 3 years reported in women treated with BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet [9.1%, (95% CI: 7.1%, 11.1%)] and placebo [8.2%, (95% CI: 6.3%, 10.2%)]. The two treatment groups were also similar with regard to the number of fractures reported at the individual non-vertebral sites: pelvis, femur, wrist, forearm, rib, and hip.

Effect on BMD

BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet significantly increased BMD at the lumbar spine and hip relative to treatment with placebo. In the 3-year osteoporosis treatment study, BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet produced increases in lumbar spine BMD that were progressive over 3 years of treatment and were statistically significant relative to placebo at 6 months and at all later time points. Lumbar spine BMD increased by 6.4% after 3 years of treatment with BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet compared with 1.4% in the placebo group (p < 0.0001). Table 4 displays the significant increases in BMD seen at the lumbar spine, total hip, femoral neck, and trochanter compared to placebo.

Table 4 : Mean Percent Change in BMD from Baseline to Endpoint in Patients Treated with BONIVA 2.5 mg Daily Oral Tablet or Placebo in the 3-Year Osteoporosis Treatment Study*

  Placebo BONIVA 2.5 mg
Lumbar Spine 1.4 6.4
(n=693) (n=712)
Total Hip -0.7 3.1
(n=638) (n=654)
Femoral Neck -0.7 2.6
(n=683) (n=699)
Trochanter 0.2 5.3
(n=683) (n=699)
*The endpoint value is the value at the study's last time point, 3 years, for all patients who had BMD measured at that time; otherwise the last postbaseline value prior to the study's last time point is used.

Bone Histology

The effects of BONIVA 2.5 mg daily oral tablet on bone histology were evaluated in iliac crest biopsies from 16 women after 22 months of treatment and 20 women after 34 months of treatment. The histological analysis of bone biopsies showed bone of normal quality and no indication of osteomalacia or a mineralization defect.

Last reviewed on RxList: 12/21/2016
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

Boniva Injection - User Reviews

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