New Drug Arrives for Nonregenerative Anemia in Cats: Molidustat

Jim Budde, PharmD, RPh, DICVP, Plumb's Veterinary Drugs

ArticleLast Updated September 20231 min read
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Complete drug information and pet owner handout can be found in Plumb’s.

Veterinarians have a new treatment option for cats with anemia. Molidustat is conditionally approved by the FDA (deemed safe with a “reasonable expectation of effectiveness”) for the control of nonregenerative anemia associated with chronic kidney disease (CKD) in cats

Pharmacology of Molidustat

Molidustat is a reversible inhibitor of hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase (HIF-PH), and causes a dose-dependent increase of endogenous erythropoietin production and subsequent red blood cell production (erythropoiesis) in cats with CKD.

Molidustat Contraindications

Molidustat is contraindicated and should not be used in cats that are hypersensitive to it or the product’s components, or in cats that are pregnant, lactating, or intended for breeding.

Side Effects of Molidustat

Vomiting was the most commonly observed adverse effect, occurring in over 50% of cats that received the drug. Molidustat use has also been associated with thromboembolic events and seizures.

Additional Information & Dosing Instructions

Molidustat treatment must periodically be paused in order to prevent polycythemia. A comprehensive look at how to manage nonregenerative anemia associated with CKD in cats receiving molidustat, including implementing these treatment pauses, is offered by the experts at Plumb’s — complete drug details and pet owner handout can be accessed here.