Cardiome Announces Publication Of Positive Data From A Study Comparing Vernakalant IV Versus Propafenone And Flecainide

Sep 23, 2013, 08:30 ET from Cardiome Pharma Corp.


VANCOUVER, Sept. 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Cardiome Pharma Corp. (NASDAQ: CRME / TSX: COM) today announced publication of positive data from an open label study in patients with atrial fibrillation that compared treatment with vernakalant intravenous (IV) to oral propafenone and oral flecainide. Patients treated with vernakalant achieved conversion to normal sinus rhythm in a median time of 12 minutes compared to 151 minutes for the propafenone group and 162 minutes for the flecainide group (p<0.01). These results appeared in the current issue of the Journal of Atrial Fibrillation, a peer reviewed medical journal, and represents the first study to compare these three agents.

"I am pleased that the favorable results of this study show that in patients with recent onset atrial fibrillation, treatment with vernakalant IV was associated with more rapid conversion to normal sinus rhythm than propafenone or flecainide, both of which are frequently prescribed antiarrhythmic medications," stated William Hunter, M.D., Chief Executive Officer of Cardiome Pharma Corp. "The faster conversion rate with intravenous vernakalant experienced at this center translated to shorter length of stay in the emergency room compared to the other two therapies and we believe these results can be replicated across other centers worldwide in similar patient groups."

"Vernakalant IV, with its fast onset of action, is a well-tolerated and effective alternative to propafenone or flecainide in this patient population," stated Diego Conde, M.D., Chief of Cardiovascular Emergency Care Section, Instituto Cardiovascular de Buenos Aires. "The significant advantage in time to conversion to normal sinus rhythm with vernakalant compared to propafenone or flecainide, that leads to a reduction in hospital stay-length may result in patient benefits," Dr. Conde added.

Patients with symptomatic recent onset atrial fibrillation (less than 48 hours duration) without structural heart disease or hemodynamic instability were eligible for the study. Subjects received a single oral dose of 600 mg of propafenone (N=50), a single oral dose of 300 mg of flecainide (N=50), or vernakalant IV (N=50) in an initial dose of 3.0 mg/kg for 10 minutes and an additional 2 mg/kg if atrial fibrillation had not resolved within 15 minutes. The conversion rate approximated 80% in both the propafenone and flecainide groups at 8 hours versus 90% in the vernakalant group at 2 hours. This difference was not statistically significant at 8 hours. In addition to the more rapid time to cardioversion, patients treated with vernakalant IV experienced a significantly shorter median hospital length of stay, 243 minutes (interquartile range [IQR], 190-276) versus 422 minutes (IQR, 341- 739) for the patients treated with propafenone and 410 minutes (IQR, 330-727) for the patients treated with flecainide (p<0.01). No adverse events were reported.1


  1. Conde, D. et al. Conversion of Recent-Onset Atrial Fibrillation: Which Drug is the Best? Journal of Atrial Fibrillation. 2013;6(2). Accessed online September 17, 2013

About Cardiome Pharma Corp. Cardiome Pharma Corp. is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery, development and commercialization of new therapies that will improve the health of patients around the world. Cardiome has one marketed product, BRINAVESSTM (vernakalant IV), approved in Europe and other territories for the rapid conversion of recent onset atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm in adults.

Cardiome is traded on the NASDAQ Capital Market (CRME) and the Toronto Stock Exchange (COM). For more information, please visit our web site at

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SOURCE Cardiome Pharma Corp.