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Clinical data
Trade namesIxempra
Other namesAzaepothilone B
License data
Routes of
Intravenous infusion
ATC code
Legal status
Legal status
Pharmacokinetic data
Protein binding67 to 77%
MetabolismExtensive, hepatic, CYP3A4-mediated
Elimination half-life52 hours
ExcretionFecal (mostly) and renal
  • (1R,5S,6S,7R,10S,14S,16S)-6,10-dihydroxy-1,5,7,
CAS Number
PubChem CID
CompTox Dashboard (EPA)
ECHA InfoCard100.158.736 Edit this at Wikidata
Chemical and physical data
Molar mass506.70 g·mol−1
3D model (JSmol)
  • Cc3nc(/C=C(\C)[C@@H]1C[C@@H]2O[C@]2(C)CCC[C@H](C)[C@H](O)[C@@H](C)C(=O)C(C)(C)[C@@H](O)CC(=O)N1)cs3
  • InChI=1S/C27H42N2O5S/c1-15-9-8-10-27(7)22(34-27)12-20(16(2)11-19-14-35-18(4)28-19)29-23(31)13-21(30)26(5,6)25(33)17(3)24(15)32/h11,14-15,17,20-22,24,30,32H,8-10,12-13H2,1-7H3,(H,29,31)/b16-11+/t15-,17+,20-,21-,22-,24-,27+/m0/s1 checkY
 ☒NcheckY (what is this?)  (verify)

Ixabepilone (INN; also known as azaepothilone B, codenamed BMS-247550) is a pharmaceutical drug developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb as a chemotherapeutic medication for cancer.[1]


Ixabepilone is a semi-synthetic analog of epothilone B, a natural chemical compound produced by Sorangium cellulosum.[2] Epothilone B itself could not be developed as a pharmaceutical drug because of poor metabolic stability and pharmacokinetics.[3] Ixabepilone was designed through medicinal chemistry to improve upon these properties.[3]


Much like Taxol, Ixabepilone acts to stabilize microtubules.[4][5][6] It is highly potent, capable of damaging cancer cells in very low concentrations, and retains activity in cases where tumor cells are insensitive to taxane type drugs.[7]


On October 16, 2007, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved ixabepilone for the treatment of aggressive metastatic or locally advanced breast cancer no longer responding to currently available chemotherapies.[8] In November 2008, the EMEA has refused a marketing authorisation for Ixabepilone.[9]

Ixabepilone is administered through injection, and is marketed under the trade name Ixempra.

Clinical uses[edit]

Ixabepilone, in combination with capecitabine, has demonstrated effectiveness in the treatment of metastatic or locally advanced breast cancer in patients after failure of an anthracycline and a taxane.[10]

It has been investigated for use in treatment of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.[11] In pancreatic cancer phase two trial it showed some promising results (used alone). Combination therapy trials are ongoing.[7]


  1. ^ "More information on cancer drugs". www.cancer.org.
  2. ^ Goodin S (May 2008). "Novel cytotoxic agents: epothilones". Am J Health Syst Pharm. 65 (10 Suppl 3): S10–5. doi:10.2146/ajhp080089. PMID 18463327.
  3. ^ a b Lee FY, Borzilleri R, Fairchild CR, et al. (December 2008). "Preclinical discovery of ixabepilone, a highly active antineoplastic agent". Cancer Chemother. Pharmacol. 63 (1): 157–66. doi:10.1007/s00280-008-0724-8. PMID 18347795.
  4. ^ Lopus, M; Smiyun, G; Miller, H; Oroudjev, E; Wilson, L; Jordan, MA (2015). "Mechanism of action of ixabepilone and its interactions with the βIII-tubulin isotype". Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 76 (5): 1013–24. doi:10.1007/s00280-015-2863-z. PMID 26416565. S2CID 1842156.
  5. ^ Denduluri N, Swain SM (March 2008). "Ixabepilone for the treatment of solid tumors: a review of clinical data". Expert Opin Investig Drugs. 17 (3): 423–35. doi:10.1517/13543784.17.3.423. PMID 18321240. S2CID 71169099.
  6. ^ Goodin S (November 2008). "Ixabepilone: a novel microtubule-stabilizing agent for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer". Am J Health Syst Pharm. 65 (21): 2017–26. doi:10.2146/ajhp070628. PMID 18945860.
  7. ^ a b M. Vulfovich; Rocha-Lima, C; et al. (2008). "Novel advances in pancreatic cancer treatment". Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. 8 (6): 993–1002. doi:10.1586/14737140.8.6.993. PMID 18533808. S2CID 20049942.
  8. ^ "FDA Approves IXEMPRA(TM) (ixabepilone), A Semi-Synthetic Analog Of Epothilone B, For The Treatment Of Advanced Breast Cancer". Medical News Today.
  9. ^ London, 20 November 2008 Doc. Ref. EMEA/602569/2008
  10. ^ Thomas ES, Gomez HL, Li RK, et al. (November 2007). "Ixabepilone plus capecitabine for metastatic breast cancer progressing after anthracycline and taxane treatment". J. Clin. Oncol. 25 (33): 5210–7. doi:10.1200/JCO.2007.12.6557. PMID 17968020. Archived from the original on 2013-04-15.
  11. ^ Aghajanian C, Burris HA, Jones S, et al. (March 2007). "Phase I study of the novel epothilone analog ixabepilone (BMS-247550) in patients with advanced solid tumors and lymphomas". J. Clin. Oncol. 25 (9): 1082–8. doi:10.1200/JCO.2006.08.7304. PMID 17261851. Archived from the original on 2013-04-15.

External links[edit]