A randomized crossover study to evaluate local tolerability following subcutaneous administration of a new depot medroxyprogesterone acetate contraceptive formulation

Elsevier, Contraception: X, Volume 5, January 2023
Halpern V., Wheeless A., Brache V., Lendvay A., Cochon L., Taylor D. et al.

Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate and compare local tolerability of investigational drug TV-46046 and reference drug Depo-subQ Provera 104, both containing medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) as an active ingredient. Study design: We conducted a randomized, crossover, single-center study. Twenty-seven healthy women aged 25 to 47 years at low risk of pregnancy received a subcutaneous injection of each of the four study drugs (120 mg/0.3 mL of TV-46046, 60 mg/0.3 mL of diluted TV-46046, 0.3 mL of TV-46046 placebo, and 104 mg/0.65 mL of Depo-subQ 104) in different quadrants of the abdomen. We assessed local tolerability by occurrence of injection site reactions (ISRs), as well as injection site pain and overall safety for at least 9 months postinjections. Results: Of a total of 108 study injections, three injections were partial due to needle blockage. We observed a total of 30 ISRs following 105 full-dose injections, including hypopigmentation (n = 24), bruising (n = 4), and atrophy/dimple (n = 2). Eleven cases of hypopigmentation occurred following 25 full-dose injections of undiluted TV-46046 (44.0%), six following 27 full-dose injections of diluted TV-46046 (22.2%), and seven following 26 full-dose injections of Depo-subQ 104 (26.9%). Hypopigmentations occurred on average 8 months postinjection. Injection pain was minimal and dissipated quickly after all four injections. Conclusions: Subcutaneous administration of MPA in a suspension formulation is associated with the delayed onset of hypopigmentation at the site of injection. Although not statistically significant, the rate of ISRs was over 60% higher for undiluted TV-46046 compared to Depo-subQ 104. This difference bears careful monitoring in future studies of TV-46046. Implications: From a safety standpoint, investigational drug TV-46046 is appropriate for further clinical testing as a 6-month contraceptive injectable. The previously underreported hypopigmentation associated with subcutaneous administration of MPA warrants further investigation and acceptability assessment among users of existing Depo-subQ 104 as well as careful monitoring of local tolerability of TV-46046 in future clinical trials. Trial registration: Registered at clinicaltrials.gov no: NCT02817464