Iloprost is a second generation structural analog of prostacyclin (PGI) with about ten-fold greater potency than the first generation stable analogs, such as carbaprostacyclin. Iloprost binds with equal affinity to human prostacyclin (Prostanoid IP) and prostaglandin EP1 receptors. Iloprost constricts the ilium and fundus circular smooth muscle as strongly as prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) itself. Iloprost inhibits the ADP, thrombin, and collagen-induced aggregation of human platelets. In whole animals, iloprost acts as a vasodilator, hypotensive, antidiuretic, and prolongs bleeding time. All of these properties help to antagonize the pathological changes that take place in the small pulmonary arteries of patients with pulmonary hypertension.
Iloprost is a synthetic analogue of prostacyclin PGI2. Iloprost dilates systemic and pulmonary arterial vascular beds. It also affects platelet aggregation but the relevance of this effect to the treatment of pulmonary hypertension is unknown. The two diastereoisomers of iloprost differ in their potency in dilating blood vessels, with the 4S isomer substantially more potent than the 4R isomer.
Primarily hepatic. Iloprost is metabolized principally via beta-oxidation of the carboxyl side chain.
Overdoses can lead to hypotension, headache, flushing, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.