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Restasis (Cyclosporine Ophthalmic) - Description and Clinical Pharmacology


Sterile, Preservative-Free


RESTASIS ® (cyclosporine ophthalmic emulsion) 0.05% contains a topical immunomodulator with anti-inflammatory effects. Cyclosporine's chemical name is Cyclo[[(E)-(2S,3R,4R)-3-hydroxy-4-methyl-2-(methylamino)-6-octenoyl]-L-2-aminobutyryl-N-methylglycyl-N-methyl-L-leucyl-L-valyl-N-methyl-L-leucyl-L-alanyl-D-alanyl-N-methyl-L-leucyl-N-methyl-L-leucyl-N-methyl-L-valyl] and it has the following structure:

Structural Formula

Cyclosporine is a fine white powder. RESTASIS ® appears as a white opaque to slightly translucent homogeneous emulsion. It has an osmolality of 230 to 320 mOsmol/kg and a pH of 6.5-8.0. Each mL of RESTASIS ® ophthalmic emulsion contains: Active: cyclosporine 0.05%. Inactives: glycerin; castor oil; polysorbate 80; carbomer copolymer type A; purified water; and sodium hydroxide to adjust pH.


Mechanism of Action

Cyclosporine is an immunosuppressive agent when administered systemically.

In patients whose tear production is presumed to be suppressed due to ocular inflammation associated with keratoconjunctivitis sicca, cyclosporine emulsion is thought to act as a partial immunomodulator. The exact mechanism of action is not known.


Blood cyclosporin A concentrations were measured using a specific high pressure liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry assay. Blood concentrations of cyclosporine, in all the samples collected, after topical administration of RESTASIS ® 0.05%, BID, in humans for up to 12 months, were below the quantitation limit of 0.1 ng/mL. There was no detectable drug accumulation in blood during 12 months of treatment with RESTASIS ® ophthalmic emulsion.

Clinical Evaluations

Four multicenter, randomized, adequate and well-controlled clinical studies were performed in approximately 1200 patients with moderate to severe keratoconjunctivitis sicca. RESTASIS ® demonstrated statistically significant increases in Schirmer wetting of 10 mm versus vehicle at six months in patients whose tear production was presumed to be suppressed due to ocular inflammation. This effect was seen in approximately 15% of RESTASIS ® ophthalmic emulsion treated patients versus approximately 5% of vehicle treated patients. Increased tear production was not seen in patients currently taking topical anti-inflammatory drugs or using punctal plugs.

No increase in bacterial or fungal ocular infections was reported following administration of RESTASIS ®.

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