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== Information about Gemcitabine ==Gemcitabine is a cytosine analogue and intravenously administered antineoplastic agent used in the therapy of several forms of advanced, pancreatic, lung, breast, ovarian and bladder cancer

Liver safety of Gemcitabine

Gemcitabine is associated with a high rate of transient serum enzyme elevations during therapy but is a very rare cause of acute, clinically apparent liver injury

Mechanism of action of Gemcitabine

Gemcitabine (jem sye' ta been), 2,,2.-difluoro deoxycytidine, is a pyrimidine analogue that is widely used in solid tumor chemotherapy.  Intracellularly, it is metabolized to diphosphate and triphosphate forms, both of which have antineoplastic activity inhibiting ribonucleotide reductase and competing with deoxycytidine triphosphate for incorporation into DNA.  Gemcitabine is classified as an antimetabolite and is believed to act by inhibition of DNA synthesis in rapidly dividing cells. 

FDA approval information for Gemcitabine

Gemcitabine was approved for use in cancer chemotherapy in the United States in 1996 and current indications include chemotherapy for advanced pancreatic, non-small cell lung, breast, ovarian and bladder cancers, either alone or in combination with other antineoplastic agents.  Gemcitabine is administered intravenously and is available in vials of 10 and 50 mL in concentrations of 20 mg/mL generically and under the brand name Gemzar. 

Dosage and administration for Gemcitabine

The regimen of administration and dose vary by indication.  A typical dosing regimen is 30 minute infusions of 1.0 to 1.2 g/m2 on days 1, 8 and 15 of each 28 day cycle of chemotherapy. 

Side effects of Gemcitabine

Common side effects include bone marrow suppression, fatigue, diarrhea, nausea, gastrointestinal upset, rash, alopecia, and stomatitis.


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