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Systematic (IUPAC) name
Clinical data
  • US: C (Risk not ruled out)
Routes of
Legal status
Legal status
  • ℞ (Prescription only)
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability 35% sublingual
Protein binding 95%
Metabolism hepatic
Biological half-life 24 hours
Excretion 50% in urine, 40% in feces
CAS Number 65576-45-6
ATC code N05AH05 (WHO)
PubChem CID 163091
Chemical data
Formula C17H16ClNO
Molar mass 285.77 g/mol[[Script error: No such module "String".]]
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Asenapine (Saphris) is a new atypical antipsychotic developed for the treatment of schizophrenia and acute mania associated with bipolar disorder by Schering-Plough after its November 19, 2007 merger with Organon International. Development of the drug, through Phase III trials, began while Organon was still a part of Akzo Nobel.[1] Preliminary data indicate that it has minimal anticholinergic and cardiovascular side effects, as well as minimal weight gain. Over 3000 patients have participated in clinical trials of asenapine, and the FDA accepted the manufacturer's NDA on November 26, 2007 for standard review.[2]


Asenapine shows high affinity (pKi) for numerous receptors, including the serotonin 5-HT1A (8.6), 5-HT1B (8.4), 5-HT2A (10.2), 5-HT2B (9.8), 5-HT2C (10.5), 5-HT5A (8.8), 5-HT6 (9.5), and 5-HT7 (9.9) receptors, the adrenergic α1 (8.9), α2A (8.9), α2B (9.5), and α2C (8.9) receptors, the dopamine D1 (8.9), D2 (8.9), D3 (9.4), and D4 (9.0) receptors, and the histamine H1 (9.0) and H2 (8.2) receptors.[3] It has much lower affinity (pKi < 5) for the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Asenapine behaves as an antagonist at all receptors.[3]

Receptor Affinity (pKi) [3] Affinity (Ki (nM)) [4]
5-HT1A 8.6 2.5
5-HT1B 8.4 4.0
5-HT2A 10.2 0.06
5-HT2B 9.8 0.16
5-HT2C 10.5 0.03
5-HT5A 8.8 1.6
5-HT6 9.5 0.25
5-HT7 9.9 0.13
α1-Adrenergic 8.9 1.2
α2A-Adrenergic 8.9 1.2
α2B-Adrenergic 9.5  ? (~0.25)
α2C-Adrenergic 8.9 1.2
D1 8.9 1.4
D2 8.9 1.3
D3 9.4 0.42
D4 9.0 1.1
H1 9.0 1.0
H2 8.2 6.2
mACh < 5 8,128

Indications and usage

Asenapine has been approved by the FDA for the acute treatment of adults with schizophrenia and acute treatment of manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder with or without psychotic features in adults.[4]

Side effects

Common side effects: (incidence at least 5% or greater and at least twice that for placebo or greater than 10% regardless of placebo rate) Akathisia, oral hypothesia, somnolence, dizziness, extrapyramidal symptoms other than akathisia, weight gain, insomnia, headache.

Rare side effects: Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (Combination of fever, muscle stiffness, faster breathing, sweating, reduced consciousness, and sudden change in blood pressure and heart rate.), tardive dyskinesia.



J. van der Burg, U.S. Patent 4,145,434.

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External links



  1. "Bipolar Disorder". Clinical Trials Update. Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News. 2007-06-15. pp. 52,55. 
  2. "Schering-Plough Announces Asenapine NDA Accepted for Filing by the U.S. FDA" (Press release). Schering-Plough. 2007-11-26. Retrieved 2008-12-29. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Shahid M, Walker GB, Zorn SH, Wong EH. (2009). "Asenapine: a novel psychopharmacologic agent with a unique human receptor signature". J Psychopharmacol. 23 (1): 65–73. doi:10.1177/0269881107082944. PMID 18308814. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Saphris (asenapine) prescribing information" (PDF). Schering Corporation. 2009-08-01. Retrieved 2009-09-05.