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Cranberry juice ingestion and clinical drug-drug interaction potentials; review of case studies and perspectives.

Posted: February 15, 2014
Authors: Srinivas NR
Journal: J Pharm Pharm Sci 16(2):289-303

Abstract: Cranberry juice is a popular beverage with many health benefits. It has anthocyanins to supplement dietary needs. Based on in vitro evidence cranberry juice is an inhibitor of CYP enzymes and at higher amounts as potent as ketoconazole (CYP3A) and fluconazole (CYP2C9). There is, however, a discrepancy between in vitro and in vivo observations with respect to a number of substrates (cyclosporine, warfarin, flurbiprofen, tizanidine, diclofenac, amoxicillin, ceflacor); with the exception of a single report on midazolam, where there was a moderate increase in the AUC of midazolam in subjects pre-treated with cranberry juice. However, another study questions the clinical relevancy of in vivo pharmacokinetic interaction between cranberry juice and midazolam. The controversy may be due to a) under in vitro conditions all anthocyanin principles may be available to have a concerted effort in CYP inhibition; however, limited anthocyanin principles may be bioavailable with varying low levels in the in vivo studies; b) a faster clearance of the active anthocyanin principles under in vivo conditions may occur, leading to low threshold levels for CYP inhibition; c) efficient protein binding and/or rapid tissue uptake of the substrate may have precluded the drug availability to the enzymes in the in vivo studies. With respect to pharmacodynamic aspects, while the debate continues on the issue of an interaction between warfarin and cranberry juice, the summation of the pharmacodynamics data obtained in patients and healthy subjects from different prospectively designed and controlled clinical trials does not provide overwhelming support for the existence of a pharmacodynamic drug interaction for normal cranberry juice ingestion. However, it is apparent that consumption of large quantities of cranberry juice (about 1-2 L per day) or cranberry juice concentrates in supplements for an extended time period (>3-4 weeks) may temporally alter the effect of warfarin. Therefore, the total avoidance of cranberry juice by warfarin users may not be warranted by the published studies. However, in certain situations of higher intake of cranberry juice or concentrate there may be a need to monitor both warfarin doses and its effect.


Cranberry Juice and Warfarin: When Bad Publicity Trumps Science

Posted: January 11, 2011
Authors: Zikria J, Goldman R, Ansell J
Journal: Am J Med 123(5):384-92

Abstract: Based on anecdotal reports, the question of whether cranberry juice interacts with warfarin has been raised. This article discusses the potential mechanism, and systematically reviews case reports as well as clinical trials examining the possible interaction. We systematically searched MEDLINE via PubMed, and the Cochrane Library database. Fifteen case reports were summarized, including the initial unpublished brief reports to the Committee on Safety of Medicines and the subsequent 6 published case reports. Seven clinical trials were analyzed, including 3 studies using warfarin and 4 surrogate drugs. Only 2 cases had a validation scale suggesting a "probable" interaction, but even in these patients there were many reasons to question the validity of a relevant drug interaction. Randomized clinical trials and surrogate markers found no evidence to support the interaction between cranberry juice and warfarin. Because the moderate consumption of cranberry juice does not affect anticoagulation, we encourage the reexamination of initial warnings based on scientific evidence. We conclude that the initial precautionary warnings by administrating bodies are limited to anecdotal case reports and represent misleading conclusions.


Warfarin-herb interactions: a review and study based on assessment of clinical case reports in literature

Posted: January 11, 2011
Authors: Patel JA, Gohil KJ, Garrido G
Journal: BLACPMA 7(2):85-99

Abstract: The potential risk of herb drug interactions is of particular focus today owing to the increasing and inadvertent use of herbs in recent times. It is a major safety concern for the drugs with narrow therapeutic index like warfarin, a most common anticoagulant with the maximum number of interactions reported. The objective of the present study was to conduct a systemic review of literature to consolidate the clinical case reports of warfarin–herb interactions and to assess the report reliabilities. We reviewed the published clinical literature to consolidate and
assess the interactions between various herbs and warfarin, based on reported adverse events, descriptions of the clinical case reports and case series using electronic databases as well as hand picked references from the year 1971 to year 2007 and ranked them on likely causality
using Naranjo’s algorithm. Out of 72 cases of documented case reports of warfarin with various herbs, 84.7% cases were evaluated as possible interactions (61/72) and 15.3% cases (11/72) as probable interactions. Cranberry juice was most commonly involved in interactions with warfarin with 34.7% of cases (25/72) of which 92% cases were possible interactions (23/25) and 8% cases (2/25) were probable
interactions. Hence, we conclude that combining anticoagulant medicines with herbs appears to be a risky proposition. The number of herbs reported to interact with warfarin continues to expand. Patients on warfarin are specifically advised to avoid taking herbal medicines or to
have their INR measured within two weeks of starting the drug, to be on a safer side. Further, more systematic studies pertaining to warfarin herb interactions are urgently warranted.


Interaction between warfarin and cranberry juice

Posted: November 13, 2010
Authors: Aston JL, Lodolce AE, Shapiro NL
Journal: Pharmacotherapy 26(9):1314-9

Abstract: Warfarin is extensively used for anticoagulation to a target international normalized ratio of 2.0-3.0 for most indications or 2.5-3.5 for high-risk indications; however, many drugs and dietary supplements induce fluctuations in the international normalized ratio. Such fluctuations may lead to therapeutic failure or bleeding complications. Cranberry juice is increasingly used for the prevention and adjunctive treatment of urinary tract infections. The United Kingdom's Committee on Safety of Medicines has alerted clinicians to a potential interaction between warfarin and cranberry juice and has advised that patients avoid their concurrent use. Review and analysis of the literature revealed that ingestion of large volumes of cranberry juice destabilize warfarin therapy. Small amounts of juice are not expected to cause such an interaction. Clinicians should be aware of this potential interaction and monitor and counsel patients accordingly.


Interaction potential between cranberry juice and warfarin

Posted: November 8, 2010
Authors: Pham DQ, Pham AQ
Journal: Am J Health Syst Pharm 64(5):490-4

Abstract: PURPOSE: The interaction potential between warfarin and cranberry juice is discussed.

SUMMARY: Reports from the United Kingdom have raised concern over the interaction potential between cranberry juice and warfarin. Warfarin is the most commonly prescribed oral medication for anticoagulation therapy. Cranberry juice is a flavonoid, which has been shown to induce, inhibit, or act as a substrate for the biosynthesis of several cytochrome P-450 (CYP) isoenzymes. Specifically, cranberry juice may inhibit the activity of CYP2C9, the primary isoenzyme involved in the metabolism of S-warfarin. A search of the medical literature identified three peer-reviewed case reports and two peer-reviewed, prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials using metabolic surrogates of warfarin (flurbiprofen and cyclosporine) that described possible interactions between cranberry juice and warfarin. Two case reports suggested that cranberry juice increased the International Normalized Ratio (INR) of patients taking warfarin, but neither clearly identified cranberry juice as the sole cause of INR elevation. One case report appeared to show a correlation between the effects of cranberry juice and warfarin metabolism. Both clinical trials indicated the lack of an interaction between cranberry juice and CYP isoenzymes 2C9 and 3A, both of which are necessary in warfarin metabolism. More studies are required to determine the potential interaction between cranberry juice and warfarin.

CONCLUSION: The available data do not seem to show a clinically relevant interaction between cranberry juice and warfarin; however, patients taking warfarin with cranberry juice should be cautioned about the potential interaction and monitored closely for INR changes and signs and symptoms of bleeding.


Enhancing health benefits of berries through phenolic antioxidant enrichment: focus on cranberry.`

Posted: November 5, 2010
Authors: Vattem DA, Ghaedian R, Shetty K
Journal: Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 14(2):120-30

Abstract: Emerging epidemiological evidence is increasingly pointing to the beneficial effects of fruits and vegetables in managing chronic and infectious diseases. These beneficial effects are now suggested to be due to the constituent phenolic phytochemicals having antioxidant activity. Cranberry like other fruits is also rich in phenolic phytochemicals such as phenolic acids, flavonoids and ellagic acid. Consumption of cranberry has been historically been linked to lower incidences of urinary tract infections and has now been shown to have a capacity to inhibit peptic ulcer-associated bacterium, Helicobacter pylori. Isolated compounds from cranberry have also been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Recent evidence suggests the ability of phytochemical components in whole foods in being more effective in protectively supporting human health than compared to isolated individual phenolic phytochemicals. This implies that the profile of phenolic phytochemicals determines the functionality of the whole food as a result of synergistic interaction of constituent phenolic phytochemicals. Solid state bioprocessing using food grade fungi common in Asian food cultures as well as cranberry phenolic synergies through the addition of functional biphenyls such as ellagic acid and rosmarinic acid along with processed fruit extracts have helped to advance these concepts. These strategies could be further explored to enrich cranberry and cranberry products with functional phytochemicals and further improve their functionality for enhancing health benefits.