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Accession Number
Small Molecule

Barnidipine is a long-acting novel calcium antagonist that belongs to the dihydropyridine (DHP) group of calcium channel blockers. Used in the treatment of hypertension, barnidipine displays high affinity for the calcium channels of the smooth muscle cells in the vascular wall 6 and selectivity against cardiovascular L-type calcium channels 1. Barnidipine contains two chiral centres thus can have four possible enantiomers. The active component is composed of a single optical isomer (3'S, 4S configuration), which is the most potent and longest-acting of the four enantiomers 3. Compared to several other calcium antagonists which are racemates, the barnidipine compound consisting of a single enantiomer may offer a high degree of pharmacological selectivity 3.

According to a dose-ranging, multicentre, placebo-controlled, double-blind study in patients with mild to moderate hypertension, the antihypertensive response from barnidipine treatment was maintained after a 1-year and 2-year follow-up period in 91% of the patients who had an initial response to the drug 1. In two European multicentre randomized, double-blind trials, barnidipine was shown to possess equivalent antihypertensive efficacy to amlodipine and nitrendipine, but produced fewer class-specific side-effects 4. It also demonstrated clinical efficacy which is similar to that of atenolol, enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide 1.

It is available in modified-release oral tablets under the brand name Vasexten to be taken once daily in the morning. Barnidipine has a gradual onset of action and is shown to be well tolerated in patients. It does not produce reflex tachycardia 1.

  • Barnidipino
  • Mepirodipine
CAS number
Average: 491.544
Monoisotopic: 491.205635666
Chemical Formula
InChI Key
3-(3S)-1-benzylpyrrolidin-3-yl 5-methyl (4S)-2,6-dimethyl-4-(3-nitrophenyl)-1,4-dihydropyridine-3,5-dicarboxylate



Indicated for the treatment of mild to moderate essential hypertension and management of chronic stable angina.


Barnidipine reduces peripheral resistance and lowers blood pressure. The chronic use of the drug is not reported to lead to an increase in basic heart frequency. The antihypertensive effects of barnidipine are reported to remain during the entire 24-hour dose interval. Barnidipine does not exert any negative effect on serum lipids profile, glucose level or blood electrolytes 6.

Mechanism of action

Barnidipine is a lipophilic 1,4-dihydropyridine calcium antagonist that is characterized by a slow onset of action and a strong and long-lasting binding to the L-type calcium channels 6. It displays high affinity for the channels expressed in the smooth muscle cells in the vascular wall. Its main mechanism of action arises from the reduction of peripheral vascular resistance secondary to its vasodilatory actions.

Calcium ion influx via L-subtype ‘voltage-operated’ channels in the excitable membranes of the smooth muscle cells promotes the formation of calcium-dependent formation of cross-bridges between myosin and actin which are the two major contractile proteins that drive contraction. By blocking the L-type 'voltage-dependent' calcium channels, barnidipine selectively blocks the calcium ion influx in the smooth muscle cells and inhibits the activation of contractile proteins 3. It is suggested that barnidipine displays a high affinity to the inactivated state of the channel 5. Like other dihydropyridine calcium antagonists, barnidipine is predicted to interact with the alpha 1-C subunit of the L-type calcium channels. Alpha 1-C subunit of the channel is predicted to reside within the bilayer or channel pore at a location closer to the extracellular rather than the intracellular face of the membrane [A31569, A19705]. Its lipophilicity is likely a reason why barnidipine displays a slow onset and long duration of action. Being a highly lipophilic molecule with an octanol/water partition coefficient of 2000, barnidipine is expected to accumulate in the cell membrane and consequently, gains access to its target receptor in a slow manner 3.

AVoltage-dependent L-type calcium channel subunit alpha-1C

Following a single, modified-release dose of 10mg barnidipine, the peak plasma concentration was approximately 0.48 µg/L and the area under the curve (AUC) was 2.85 µg/Lxh 1. The peak plasma concentrations are reached within 5 to 6 hours after oral administration of 20mg barnidipine. While the plasma concentrations of the drug may vary between individuals, the absolute bioavailability of the barnidipine is approximately 1.1% due to extensive first-pass hepatic metabolism 6. After repeated administration of 20mg barnidipine to healthy individuals, the concomitant intake of food did not have a statistically significant effect on the AUC, Cmax or half-life of the drug 6.

Volume of distribution

After administration of single oral doses of radiolabelled barnidipine in rats, levels of radioactivity were found to be higher in the kidney, liver and gastrointestinal tract than in plasma, whereas the brain showed the lowest level of radioactivity. The drug was also detectable in the breast milk 1.

Protein binding

In vitro binding of barnidipine with plasma proteins was between 92.4 and 98.9%, and was mainly with albumin 1. Barnidipine binds at the rate of 26-32% to human erythrocytes. In addition to serum albumin, barnidipine also binds to α1 acid glycoprotein and high density lipoproteins. To a much lesser extent, binding to γ-globulin takes place 6.


Barnidipine is expected to undergo hepatic metabolism. The primary metabolism of barnidipine involves the oxidation of the 1,4-dihydropyridine ring and hydrolysis of the methyl ester. Secondary metabolism involves N-debenzylization of the side chain, hydrolysis of the N-benzylpyrrolidine ester, and reduction of the nitro group 2. Both the primary and secondary metabolic pathways are mediated by the CYP3A isoenzyme family and the metabolites formed are pharmacologically inactive 1,6.

Route of elimination

Barnidipine and its metabolites are metabolized into feces (60%), urine (40%) and breath (1%) 6. Following a single dose administration of barnidipine ranging from 5 to 20mg in healthy volunteers, urinary excretion of unchanged drug was negligible (≤0.003% of an administered dose) 1.

Half life

In a two-compartment analytical model, the median terminal elimination half life of barnidipine was 20 hours after repeated administration 6.

Not Available

Non-clinical data reveal no special hazard for humans based on conventional studies of safety pharmacology, repeated dose toxicity, genotoxicity, carcinogenic potential, toxicity to reproduction 6. Oral LD50 in rat and mouse are 105mg/kg and 108mg/kg, respectively MSDS.

In general, the clinical symptoms from overdose of calcium antagonists appear within 30 to 60 minutes of after administration of a dose five to ten times higher than the therapeutic dose. Possible symptoms that may develop include hypotension, electrophysiological effects (sinus bradycardia, prolonged AV conduction, second and third degree AV block, tachycardia), effects on the central nervous system (drowsiness, confusion and, rarely, convulsions), gastrointestinal symptoms (nausea and vomiting) and metabolic effects (hyperglycaemia) 6.

In the case of intoxication, symptomatic treatment and continuous ECG monitoring in the clinical setting are recommended. In the case of overdose, gastric lavage is strongly recommended. An intravenous (dosage 0.2 ml/kg body weight) injection of calcium (preferably 10 ml of a calcium chloride solution of 10%) should be given over a period of 5 minutes, up to a total dose of 10 ml 10%. Contractility of the myocardium, sinus rhythm and atrioventricular conduction will thus be improved. The treatment can be repeated every 15 to 20 minutes (up to a total of 4 doses) based on the patient’s response. Calcium levels should be checked 6.

Affected organisms
  • Humans and other mammals
Not Available
Pharmacogenomic Effects/ADRs
Not Available


Drug Interactions
This information should not be interpreted without the help of a healthcare provider. If you believe you are experiencing an interaction, contact a healthcare provider immediately. The absence of an interaction does not necessarily mean no interactions exist.
(R)-warfarinThe serum concentration of (R)-warfarin can be increased when it is combined with Barnidipine.
(S)-WarfarinThe serum concentration of (S)-Warfarin can be increased when it is combined with Barnidipine.
2,4-thiazolidinedioneThe risk or severity of hypoglycemia can be increased when Barnidipine is combined with 2,4-thiazolidinedione.
4-hydroxycoumarinThe metabolism of 4-hydroxycoumarin can be decreased when combined with Barnidipine.
7,8-Dichloro-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline7,8-Dichloro-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline may increase the orthostatic hypotensive activities of Barnidipine.
9-aminocamptothecinThe metabolism of 9-aminocamptothecin can be decreased when combined with Barnidipine.
AbafunginThe therapeutic efficacy of Abafungin can be increased when used in combination with Barnidipine.
AcarboseThe risk or severity of hypoglycemia can be increased when Barnidipine is combined with Acarbose.
AcebutololAcebutolol may increase the antihypertensive activities of Barnidipine.
AceclofenacThe risk or severity of hyperkalemia can be increased when Aceclofenac is combined with Barnidipine.
Additional Data Available
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  • Severity

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  • Evidence Level
    Evidence Level

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Food Interactions
Not Available


General References
  1. Malhotra HS, Plosker GL: Barnidipine. Drugs. 2001;61(7):989-96; discussion 997-8. [PubMed:11434453]
  2. Teramura T, Watanabe T, Higuchi S, Hashimoto K: Metabolism and pharmacokinetics of barnidipine hydrochloride, a calcium channel blocker, in man following oral administration of its sustained release formulation. Xenobiotica. 1997 Feb;27(2):203-16. doi: 10.1080/004982597240695 . [PubMed:9058533]
  3. van Zwieten PA: Pharmacological profile of barnidipine: a single optical isomer dihydropyridine calcium antagonist. Blood Press Suppl. 1998;1:5-8. [PubMed:9660520]
  4. Spieker C: Efficacy and tolerability of once-daily barnidipine in the clinical management of patients with mild to moderate essential hypertension. Blood Press Suppl. 1998;1:15-21. [PubMed:9660522]
  5. Wegener JW, Meyrer H, Rupp J, Nawrath H: Barnidipine block of L-type Ca(2+) channel currents in rat ventricular cardiomyocytes. Br J Pharmacol. 2000 Aug;130(8):2015-23. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjp.0703514. [PubMed:10952695]
  6. Vasexten (barnidipine hydrochloride modified release capsules) Summary of Product Characteristics [Link]
External Links
PubChem Compound
PubChem Substance
ATC Codes
C08CA12 — Barnidipine
Download (68.3 KB)

Clinical Trials

Clinical Trials
Not Available


Not Available
Not Available
Dosage forms
Not Available
Not Available
Not Available


Experimental Properties
melting point (°C)226MSDS
boiling point (°C)614.5MSDS
Predicted Properties
Water Solubility0.004 mg/mLALOGPS
pKa (Strongest Acidic)19.47ChemAxon
pKa (Strongest Basic)7.91ChemAxon
Physiological Charge1ChemAxon
Hydrogen Acceptor Count6ChemAxon
Hydrogen Donor Count1ChemAxon
Polar Surface Area111.01 Å2ChemAxon
Rotatable Bond Count9ChemAxon
Refractivity136.36 m3·mol-1ChemAxon
Polarizability51.03 Å3ChemAxon
Number of Rings4ChemAxon
Rule of FiveYesChemAxon
Ghose FilterNoChemAxon
Veber's RuleNoChemAxon
MDDR-like RuleYesChemAxon
Predicted ADMET features
Not Available


Mass Spec (NIST)
Not Available
SpectrumSpectrum TypeSplash Key
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Positive (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Positive (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Positive (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Negative (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Negative (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available
Predicted MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Negative (Annotated)Predicted LC-MS/MSNot Available


This compound belongs to the class of organic compounds known as dihydropyridinecarboxylic acids and derivatives. These are compounds containing a dihydropyridine moiety bearing a carboxylic acid group.
Organic compounds
Super Class
Organoheterocyclic compounds
Pyridines and derivatives
Sub Class
Direct Parent
Dihydropyridinecarboxylic acids and derivatives
Alternative Parents
Nitrobenzenes / Phenylmethylamines / Benzylamines / Nitroaromatic compounds / Aralkylamines / Dicarboxylic acids and derivatives / N-alkylpyrrolidines / Vinylogous amides / Enoate esters / Methyl esters
show 12 more
Dihydropyridinecarboxylic acid derivative / Nitrobenzene / Nitroaromatic compound / Benzylamine / Phenylmethylamine / Aralkylamine / Monocyclic benzene moiety / Dicarboxylic acid or derivatives / N-alkylpyrrolidine / Benzenoid
show 31 more
Molecular Framework
Aromatic heteromonocyclic compounds
External Descriptors
Not Available


Pharmacological action
General Function
Voltage-gated calcium channel activity
Specific Function
Voltage-sensitive calcium channels (VSCC) mediate the entry of calcium ions into excitable cells and are also involved in a variety of calcium-dependent processes, including muscle contraction, hor...
Gene Name
Uniprot ID
Uniprot Name
Voltage-dependent L-type calcium channel subunit alpha-1C
Molecular Weight
248974.1 Da
  1. Kwan YW, Bangalore R, Lakitsh M, Glossmann H, Kass RS: Inhibition of cardiac L-type calcium channels by quaternary amlodipine: implications for pharmacokinetics and access to dihydropyridine binding site. J Mol Cell Cardiol. 1995 Jan;27(1):253-62. [PubMed:7760349]
  2. Tikhonov DB, Zhorov BS: Structural model for dihydropyridine binding to L-type calcium channels. J Biol Chem. 2009 Jul 10;284(28):19006-17. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M109.011296. Epub 2009 May 5. [PubMed:19416978]
  3. Yamaguchi S, Okamura Y, Nagao T, Adachi-Akahane S: Serine residue in the IIIS5-S6 linker of the L-type Ca2+ channel alpha 1C subunit is the critical determinant of the action of dihydropyridine Ca2+ channel agonists. J Biol Chem. 2000 Dec 29;275(52):41504-11. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M007165200. [PubMed:11022040]
  4. Vasexten (barnidipine hydrochloride modified release capsules) Summary of Product Characteristics [Link]


Pharmacological action
General Function
Vitamin d3 25-hydroxylase activity
Specific Function
Cytochromes P450 are a group of heme-thiolate monooxygenases. In liver microsomes, this enzyme is involved in an NADPH-dependent electron transport pathway. It performs a variety of oxidation react...
Gene Name
Uniprot ID
Uniprot Name
Cytochrome P450 3A4
Molecular Weight
57342.67 Da
  1. Liau CS: Barnidipine: a new calcium channel blocker for hypertension treatment. Expert Rev Cardiovasc Ther. 2005 Mar;3(2):207-13. doi: 10.1586/14779072.3.2.207. [PubMed:15853594]
  2. Katoh M, Nakajima M, Shimada N, Yamazaki H, Yokoi T: Inhibition of human cytochrome P450 enzymes by 1,4-dihydropyridine calcium antagonists: prediction of in vivo drug-drug interactions. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2000 Feb-Mar;55(11-12):843-52. [PubMed:10805063]

Drug created on October 22, 2015 14:52 / Updated on December 02, 2019 08:40