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Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: June 2023

Voclosporin (LupkynisTM) is a calcineurin inhibitor immunosuppressant (CNI) approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat lupus nephritis. Lupus nephritis occurs when lupus attacks the kidneys. It can cause inflammation that makes the kidneys stop working.1,2

Immunosuppressant drugs help to prevent the immune system from damaging your body. Voclosporin is prescribed with other medicines to treat adults with active lupus nephritis.1,2

What are the ingredients in voclosporin?

The active ingredient is voclosporin.1

How does voclosporin work?

Voclosporin works by preventing a protein in the body called calcineurin from working. The way that it suppresses calcineurin from working is not completely understood. By blocking calcineurin it ultimately decreases inflammation.1

What are the possible side effects?

The most common side effects of voclosporin include:1

Voclosporin has a boxed warning, the strictest warning from the FDA. It has this warning because it may cause serious side effects, including:1

  • Increased risk of certain cancers, including skin cancer and lymphoma
  • Increased risk of infections that can lead to hospitalization or death

Do not start taking voclosporin if you have any type of infection unless your doctor tells you to. Contact your doctor right away if you have any signs of an infection, such as:1

  • Fever
  • Sweats or chills
  • Cough
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Muscle aches
  • Warm, red, or painful areas on your skin

These are not all the possible side effects of voclosporin. Talk to your doctor about what to expect when taking voclosporin. You also should call your doctor if you have any changes that concern you when taking voclosporin.

Other things to know

Do not take voclosporin:1

  • With medicines that are strong CYP3A4 inhibitors such as ketoconazole, itraconazole, and clarithromycin
  • If you are allergic to voclosporin or any of the ingredients in Lupkynis

People taking voclosporin: should not receive certain vaccines. Talk to your doctor before getting any vaccines.1

Before taking voclosporin, tell your doctor if you:1

Voclosporin can harm an unborn baby. If you can become pregnant, you should use birth control during treatment and for some time after the last dose of voclosporin. You should also not breastfeed during treatment with voclosporin and for some time after the last dose. Talk to your doctor about your options for birth control and breastfeeding while taking voclosporin.1

Before beginning treatment for lupus nephritis, tell your doctor about any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.

For more information, read the full prescribing information of voclosporin.

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