Astellas announced the availability of Astagraf XL (tacrolimus extended-release capsules) for the prophylaxis of organ rejection in patients receiving a kidney transplant used with mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) and corticosteroids, with or without basiliximab induction. Astagraf XL was approved in July 2013 as the first once-daily oral tacrolimus formulation available for kidney transplant patients.

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Tacrolimus inhibits T-lymphocyte activation, although the exact mechanism of action is not known. Experimental evidence suggests that tacrolimus binds to an intracellular protein, FKBP-12. A complex of tacrolimus-FKBP-12, calcium, calmodulin, and calcineurin is then formed and the phosphatase activity of calcineurin inhibited. 

Astagraf XL is available in 0.5mg, 1mg, and 5mg strength capsules in 30-count bottles and 5×10 blister cards.

For more information call (800) 727-7003 or visit