|Trade names||Oxeze, Foradil, others|
|Inhalation (capsules for oral inhalation, DPI, MDI)|
|Protein binding||61% to 64%|
|Metabolism||Liver demethylation and glucuronidation (CYP2D6, CYP2C19, CYP2C9 and CYP2A6 involved)|
|Elimination half-life||10 h|
|Excretion||Kidney and fecal|
|CompTox Dashboard (EPA)|
|Chemical and physical data|
|Molar mass||344.411 g·mol−1|
|3D model (JSmol)|
Formoterol, also known as eformoterol, is a long-acting β2 agonist (LABA) used as a bronchodilator in the management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Formoterol has an extended duration of action (up to 12 h) compared to short-acting β2 agonists such as salbutamol (albuterol), which are effective for 4 h to 6 h. Formoterol has a relatively rapid onset of action compared to other LABAs, and is effective within 2-3 minutes. The 2022 Global Initiative for Asthma report recommends a combination formoterol/inhaled corticosteroid inhaler as both a preventer and reliever treatment for asthma in adults. In children, a short-actingβ2 agonist (e.g., salbutamol) is still recommended.
It was patented in 1972 and came into medical use in 1998. It is available as a generic medication. It is also marketed in the combination formulations budesonide/formoterol and mometasone/formoterol.
In November 2005, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a health advisory alerting the public to findings that show the use of long-acting β2 agonists could lead to a worsening of wheezing symptoms in some patients.
Nowadays, available long-acting β2 agonists include salmeterol, formoterol, bambuterol, and sustained-release oral salbutamol.
Combinations of inhaled steroids and long-acting bronchodilators are becoming more widespread – combination preparations include fluticasone/salmeterol and budesonide/formoterol.
Inhaled formoterol works like other β2 agonists, causing bronchodilation by relaxing the smooth muscle in the airway so as to treat the exacerbation of asthma.
It is marketed in three forms: a dry-powder inhaler (DPI), a metered-dose inhaler (MDI) and an inhalation solution, under various brand names including Atock, Atimos/Atimos Modulite, Foradil/Foradile, Fostair, Oxeze/Oxis, Perforomist and Symbicort.