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1.  Pharmacokinetics and safety of weekly dapsone and dapsone plus pyrimethamine for prevention of pneumocystis pneumonia. 
The safety and pharmacokinetics of weekly dapsone and weekly dapsone plus pyrimethamine were examined in adult patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection who were at risk for pneumocystis pneumonia because of a prior episode or a CD4+ T-cell count less than 250 cells per mm3. Groups of patients received 100, 200, and 300 mg of dapsone as a single weekly dose. The maximum tolerated dose of weekly dapsone was established as 200 mg per week in patients receiving at least 500 mg of zidovudine concomitantly. This dose of dapsone was then found to be well tolerated when combined with pyrimethamine at 25 mg. Further patients were randomized to dapsone at 200 mg or dapsone at 200 mg plus pyrimethamine at 25 mg once weekly. Twenty-six patients each were followed for a median of 33 weeks on dapsone alone and 45 weeks on the combination. Seven patients in each group withdrew because of toxicity. Five patients receiving dapsone developed documented pneumocystis pneumonia, while four and two patients receiving dapsone plus pyrimethamine developed documented and presumptive pneumocystis pneumonia, respectively. To evaluate the tolerability of a higher dose of pyrimethamine, 11 patients had their regimen changed to dapsone at 200 mg plus pyrimethamine at 75 mg, which was well tolerated by 10 of the patients for a median period of 11 weeks. The pharmacokinetics of dapsone and pyrimethamine were examined by using a population pharmacokinetic model. Decreases in the apparent volume of the peripheral compartment were observed when multiple-dose regimens of dapsone were compared with single-dose dapsone and when multiple-dose regimens of dapsone with pyrimethamine were compared with multiple-dose dapsone alone. When administered weekly, dapsone at 200 mg and dapsone at 200 mg with pyrimethamine at 25 mg are both well-tolerated regimens. This preliminary study suggests that the efficacy of these regimens in preventing pneumocystis pneumonia, however, may be less than that of trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole.
PMCID: PMC284596  PMID: 7979291
2.  Pharmacokinetics of Dapsone Administered Daily and Weekly in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Children 
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  1999;43(11):2586-2591.
Although dapsone is a commonly used alternative agent for prophylaxis against Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in children intolerant to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, there are few data that describe dapsone pharmacokinetics in children. We studied dapsone pharmacokinetics in 30 children (median age, 2.8 years; age range, 0.3 to 12 years) receiving a new proprietary liquid preparation by three dosing regimens (1 mg/kg of body weight daily, 2 mg/kg daily, or 4 mg/kg weekly). Dosing of children with 2 mg/kg daily or 4 mg/kg weekly resulted in peak concentrations equivalent to those reached in adults receiving 100-mg tablets daily. For the entire population, the median half-life was 22.2 h (range, 7.1 to 40.3 h), the median oral clearance was 0.0365 liter/kg/h (range, 0.0104 to 0.1021 liter/kg/h), and the median oral apparent volume of distribution was 1.13 liters/kg (range, 0.50 to 2.32 liters/kg). The median dapsone oral clearance was significantly increased in those infants less than 2 years of age compared to the oral clearance in those over 2 years of age (0.0484 versus 0.0278 liter/kg/h; P = 0.011). These data suggest that absorption of this liquid preparation is adequate and that the concentrations in the sera of children receiving 2 mg/kg daily or 4 mg/kg weekly are equivalent to those seen in adults receiving standard dapsone dosing. Dapsone oral clearance appears to be increased in children under 2 years of age.
PMCID: PMC89529  PMID: 10543733
3.  Population pharmacokinetics of dapsone administered biweekly to human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients. 
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  1996;40(12):2743-2748.
The population pharmacokinetics of dapsone were examined in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients receiving dapsone at a dosage of 100 mg twice weekly for the prevention of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. Nonlinear mixed-effect modeling was used to determine the best pharmacostatistical model for the data. A one-compartment open model with first-order absorption and elimination was used as the structural pharmacokinetic model. Several covariates were tested for their influence on pharmacokinetic parameters. Rifampin was found to increase the values of clearance/bioavailability (CL/F) and volume of distribution/ bioavailability (V/F) by approximately 70%. CL/F and V/F were 1.83 liters/h and 69.6 liters, respectively, for patients not taking rifampin. The effect of rifampin on the pharmacokinetic parameters of dapsone was appreciably less than expected on the basis of studies with healthy volunteers. Increased bilirubin levels were associated with a significant decrease in the absorption rate constant (Ka). However, this finding may be considered clinically irrelevant because the post hoc Bayesian estimates of Ka for patients with high bilirubin levels ( > 1.2 mg/dl) were at the lower bound of the values for patients with normal bilirubin levels. The value of Ka was 0.957 h-1 for a patient with a bilirubin level of 0.7 mg/dl. After inclusion of covariates in the model, the interpatient variability was 35% for CL/F, not significant for V/F, and 85% for Ka. Simulation of plasma concentration-versus-time curves indicated that the administration of 100 mg of dapsone biweekly is associated with sustained dapsone levels in the plasma of the majority of the patients. Dosage adjustments for patients concomitantly treated with rifampin may be necessary.
PMCID: PMC163614  PMID: 9124833
4.  Penetration of dapsone into pulmonary lining fluid of human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected patients. 
We studied the penetration of dapsone into the epithelial lining fluid (ELF) of sixteen human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected patients who had received the drug at a dose of 100 mg twice weekly as primary prophylaxis for Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. Bronchoscopy, bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), and venipuncture were performed for each patient at a specific time after administration of the last dose of dapsone. Dapsone concentrations in plasma and BAL were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography. The apparent volume of ELF recovered by BAL was determined by using urea as an endogenous marker. The mean concentrations of dapsone in ELF at 2 h (five patients), 4 h (three patients), 12 h (two patients), 24 h (three patients), and 48 h (three patients) were 0.95, 0.70, 1.55, 0.23, and 0.45 mg/liter, respectively, while concentrations in plasma were 1.23, 0.79, 1.31, 0.83, and 0.18 mg/liter, respectively. Dapsone concentrations in ELF were 76, 79, 115, 65, and 291% of those observed in plasma at the same times, respectively. These data show that dapsone is well distributed into ELF and that a twice-weekly 100-mg prophylactic regimen results in sustained concentrations in this compartment.
PMCID: PMC163854  PMID: 9145873
5.  Zidovudine, trimethoprim, and dapsone pharmacokinetic interactions in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection. 
Zidovudine is widely prescribed for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Trimethoprim and dapsone are commonly used in the management of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in HIV-infected patients. To examine the pharmacokinetic interactions among these drugs, eight HIV-infected patients (26 to 43 years old) with a mean CD4 count of 524.4 +/- 405.7 cells per mm3 received zidovudine (200 mg), trimethoprim (200 mg), and dapsone (100 mg) as single agents and in two- and three-drug combinations. Blood and urine samples were collected at a specified time and analyzed for zidovudine, zidovudine-glucuronide, trimethoprim, dapsone, and monoacetyl-dapsone concentrations under single-dose and steady-state conditions. Zidovudine did not influence the pharmacokinetic disposition of dapsone or trimethoprim. Dapsone had no effect on the pharmacokinetic disposition of zidovudine. Trimethoprim significantly decreased the renal clearance of zidovudine by 58% (5.0 +/- 1.8 versus 2.1 +/- 0.5 ml/min/kg of body weight [P < 0.05]). There was a concurrent 54% decrease in the mean urinary recovery of zidovudine (11.7 +/- 3.5 versus 5.4 +/- 3.0 [P < 0.05]), and the metabolic ratio was decreased by 78% (0.32 +/- 0.4 versus 0.07 +/- 0.05 [P < 0.05]). The mean area under the concentration-time curve from 0 to 6 h of the zidovudine-glucuronide/ zidovudine ratio was unchanged. We conclude that zidovudine, trimethoprim, and dapsone can be coadministered to patients with AIDS without significant pharmacokinetic interaction. However, in AIDS patients with liver impairment and impaired glucuronidation, doses of zidovudine may need to be decreased.
PMCID: PMC163297  PMID: 8723472
6.  HIV: primary and secondary prophylaxis for opportunistic infections 
Clinical Evidence  2010;2010:0908.
Opportunistic infections can occur in up to 40% of people with HIV infection and a CD4 count less than 250/mm3, although the risks are much lower with use of highly active antiretroviral treatment.
Methods and outcomes
We conducted a systematic review and aimed to answer the following clinical questions: What are the effects of prophylaxis for Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PCP) and toxoplasmosis? What are the effects of antituberculosis prophylaxis in people with HIV infection? What are the effects of prophylaxis for disseminated Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) disease for people with, and without, previous MAC disease? What are the effects of prophylaxis for cytomegalovirus (CMV), herpes simplex virus (HSV), and varicella zoster virus (VZV)? What are the effects of prophylaxis for invasive fungal disease in people with, and without, previous fungal disease? What are the effects of discontinuing prophylaxis against opportunistic pathogens in people on highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART)? We searched: Medline, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and other important databases up to March 2008 (Clinical Evidence reviews are updated periodically, please check our website for the most up-to-date version of this review). We included harms alerts from relevant organisations such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
We found 43 systematic reviews, RCTs, or observational studies that met our inclusion criteria.
In this systematic review we present information relating to the effectiveness and safety of the following interventions: aciclovir; antituberculosis prophylaxis; atovaquone; azithromycin (alone or plus rifabutin); clarithromycin (alone, or plus rifabutin and ethambutol); discontinuing prophylaxis for CMV, MAC, and PCP; ethambutol added to clarithromycin; famciclovir; fluconazole; isoniazid; itraconazole; oral ganciclovir; rifabutin (alone or plus macrolides); trimethoprim–sulfamethoxazole; and valaciclovir.
Key Points
Opportunistic infections can occur in up to 40% of people with HIV infection and a CD4 count less than 250/mm3, although the risks are much lower with use of highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART). HAART has reduced the rate of Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PCP), toxoplasmosis, and other opportunistic infections, so the absolute benefits of prophylactic regimens for opportunistic infections are probably smaller in people with HIV who are also taking HAART, and even smaller for those whose HIV is suppressed.
Primary prophylaxis with trimethoprim–sulfamethoxazole may reduce the risk of PCP, and has been found to be more effective than pentamidine or dapsone. Atovaquone may prevent PCP in people who cannot tolerate trimethoprim−sulfamethoxazole.We don't know whether these drugs prevent toxoplasmosis as we found few RCTs, but there is consensus that standard trimethoprim–sulfamethoxazole prophylaxis or dapsone should offer adequate coverage for toxoplasmosis.
Tuberculosis can be prevented by standard primary prophylaxis in people who are tuberculin skin test positive. Short-term combination treatment has similar efficacy to long-term isoniazid monotherapy, but is associated with a greater risk of adverse effects.
Azithromycin or clarithromycin reduce the risk of disseminated Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) disease as primary prophylaxis for people without prior MAC disease. Adding rifabutin may also be beneficial in this population, but is also associated with an increased risk of adverse effects. There is consensus that secondary prophylaxis with clarithromycin plus ethambutol decreases the risk of relapse in people with previous MAC disease. It remains unclear whether adding rifabutin to the dual drug regimen confers additional benefit as secondary prophylaxis, and the three-drug combination increases adverse effects.
Aciclovir as secondary prophylaxis reduces the risk of herpes simplex virus (HSV) and varicella zoster virus infection (VZV) and all-cause mortality. Valaciclovir may reduce the risk of recurrent HSV infection, but it may be associated with serious adverse effects.There is consensus that famciclovir is effective as secondary prophylaxis against HSV or VZV and that ganciclovir is effective as secondary prophylaxis against CMV, HSV, or VZV.
Fluconazole and itraconazole as primary prophylaxis may reduce the risk of invasive fungal infections, but azoles have been associated with potentially serious interactions with other drugs. As secondary prophylaxis, itraconazole seems effective in reducing relapse of Penicillium marneffei, but seems less effective than fluconazole at reducing recurrence of cryptococcal meningitis.
In people who have responded to HAART and have a CD4 cell count greater than 100/mm3 to 200/mm3 (depending on the condition), discontinuation of primary or secondary prophylactic treatment for PCP, toxoplasmosis, MAC, herpes virus, or invasive fungal disease infection seems safe.
PMCID: PMC3217757  PMID: 21418688
7.  Pharmacokinetics and safety of oral levofloxacin in human immunodeficiency virus-infected individuals receiving concomitant zidovudine. 
This phase I, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, parallel-design study was conducted to evaluate the safety and pharmacokinetics of levofloxacin in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected subjects concomitantly receiving a stable regimen of zidovudine (AZT). Sixteen HIV-infected males with CD4-cell counts ranging from 100 to 550 and not experiencing significant AZT intolerance were enrolled. Subjects received levofloxacin (350 mg of levofloxacin hemihydrate) or a placebo (eight subjects per treatment group) as a single oral dose on day 1, multiple doses every 8 h from days 3 to 9, and a single dose on day 10. On days 1 and 10, an AZT dose (100 mg) was administered concurrently with the study drug. In between these doses, AZT was administered according to the regimen used by the subject prior to entering the study up to a maximum of 500 mg/day. Plasma levofloxacin concentrations were monitored for 36 h after levofloxacin dosing on day 1, immediately prior to the morning doses on days 3 to 9, and for 72 h after dosing on day 10. Plasma AZT concentrations were monitored on day 0 for baseline (for 6 h after the AZT dose) and for 4 h after the AZT doses on days 1 and 10. Levofloxacin was rapidly absorbed (time to maximum plasma concentration, approximately 1.0 h) and extensively distributed in the body with an apparent volume of distribution of approximately 104 liters (approximately 1.34 liters/kg). Steady-state conditions on day 10 were confirmed. Pharmacokinetic profiles of levofloxacin from single doses and multiple (three-times-daily) doses were similar, with a moderate accumulation (observed day 10-to-day 1 ratio of the maximum plasma concentration, approximately 185% versus expected 169%; for the corresponding ratio of the area under the concentration-time curve from 0 to 8 h [AUC(0-8)], the values were observed 217% versus expected 169%) at steady state. Mean average steady-state peak plasma concentration, plasma levofloxacin concentration at the end of the dosing interval, AUC(0-8), terminal half-life, and total body clearance were 7.06 microg/ml, 3.62 microg/ml, 37.4 microg x h/ml, 7.2 h, and 9.4 liters/h (0.12 liters/h/kg), respectively. Pharmacokinetic profiles of levofloxacin in HIV-infected patients did not appear to be affected by the concomitant administration of AZT; nor were AZT pharmacokinetics altered by levofloxacin. Oral administration of 350 mg of levofloxacin hemihydrate every 8 h appeared to be well tolerated by the subjects. There were no apparent differences in adverse events between the two treatment groups. There were no clinically significant changes from baseline in any laboratory parameter or vital sign following treatments observed in this study. The study results suggest that there is no need for levofloxacin dosage adjustment in HIV-seropositive subjects who concomitantly receive AZT.
PMCID: PMC164001  PMID: 9257757
8.  Dapsone-Induced Methemoglobinemia: A Dose Related Occurrence? 
Cancer  2011;117(15):3485-3492.
Dapsone, used for Pneumocystis jiroveci (PCP) prophylaxis, is associated with increased risk of methemoglobinemia. Absence of cytochrome b5 reductase enzyme activity (CYB5RA) causes congenital methemoglobinemia, but its role in dapsone-associated methemoglobinemia is unknown. We sought to elucidate drug-related risk factors for dapsone-associated methemoglobinemia in pediatric oncology patients, including contribution of CYB5RA.
Patients and Methods
Among 167 pediatric patients treated for hematologic malignancies or aplastic anemia who received dapsone for PCP prophylaxis, demographic and dapsone treatment data were retrospectively collected. Drug-related risk factors were evaluated by Cox proportional hazards, and in a cross-sectional subgroup of 40 patients, CYB5RA was assessed.
Methemoglobinemia (median methemoglobin level = 9.0% [3.5–22.4]) was documented in 32 patients (19.8%). There was a 73% risk reduction in methemoglobinemia with dosing ≥20% below the target dose 2mg/kg/day (HR = 0.27; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.09, 0.78; p=0.016), while methemoglobinemia risk was increased with dosing ≥20% above the target dose (HR = 6.25; 95% CI 2.45, 15.93; p<0.001). Sex, body mass index, and age were not associated with increased risk. CYB5RA did not differ by methemoglobinemia status (median 8.6 IU/g Hb; [5.5 – 12.1] vs. 9.1 IU/g Hb; [6.7 – 12.7]). No patient developed PCP on dapsone.
Methemoglobinemia occurred in almost 20% of pediatric oncology patients receiving dapsone for PCP prophylaxis. Higher dapsone dosing is associated with increased risk. A cross-sectionally acquired CYB5RA level was not associated with methemoglobinemia risk. Studies are needed to define biologic correlates of methemoglobinemia and evaluate lower dapsone doses for PCP prophylaxis.
PMCID: PMC3138875  PMID: 21246536
pediatric oncology; HIV; dapsone; methemoglobinemia; Drug-related complications; cytochrome b5 reductase
9.  Indinavir Pharmacokinetics and Parmacodynamics in Children with Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection 
The indinavir dosage regimen currently used for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected children is not based on pharmacokinetic data obtained in the target patient population. The purpose of our study was to characterize indinavir pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in HIV-infected children. Eleven children (age range, 9.0 to 13.6 years; weight range, 21.7 to 56.0 kg) receiving indinavir (500 mg/m2 every 8 h) in combination with lamivudine and stavudine were studied. The correlation of indinavir pharmacokinetic parameters and demographic parameters was evaluated. Also, the pharmacodynamic relationship between parameters of indinavir exposure and parameters of renal toxicity and immunologic recovery was studied. The area under the indinavir concentration-time curve (AUC) and patient body surface area (BSA) showed a significant negative correlation (r = 0.73; P = 0.012). Patients with smaller BSA had excessive indinavir AUC compared to adults. On the other hand, the median minimum drug concentration in plasma (Cmin) was lower than that reported for adults. The maximum indinavir concentration in serum was higher in patients with renal toxicity (5 out of 11 children), but the difference was not statistically significant (15.3 ± 8.2 versus 9.8 ± 4.4 mg/liter; P = 0.19). There was a trend toward higher immunologic efficacy in patients with greater indinavir exposure: the time-averaged AUC of the percentage of CD4+ lymphocytes over the baseline value for patients with indinavir Cmin > 95% inhibitory concentration (IC95) was higher than in patients with Cmin < IC95 (P = 0.068). Our study suggests that a dose reduction may be appropriate for children with small BSA and that a 6-h dosage regimen may be indicated for a substantial percentage of patients. Due to the low number of patients enrolled in this study, our results should be confirmed by a larger study.
PMCID: PMC89758  PMID: 10681350
10.  Safety, Pharmacokinetics, and Pharmacodynamics of Cyclodextrin Itraconazole in Pediatric Patients with Oropharyngeal Candidiasis 
The safety, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of cyclodextrin itraconazole (CD-ITRA) oral suspension were investigated in an open sequential dose escalation study with 26 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected children and adolescents (5 to 18 years old; mean CD4+-cell count, 128/μl) with oropharyngeal candidiasis (OPC). Patients received CD-ITRA at either 2.5 mg/kg of body weight once a day (QD) or 2.5 mg/kg twice a day (BID) for a total of 15 days. Pharmacokinetic sampling was performed after the first dose and for up to 120 h after the last dose, and antifungal efficacy was evaluated by standardized scoring of the oropharynx. Apart from mild to moderate gastrointestinal disturbances in three patients (11.5%), CD-ITRA was well tolerated. Two patients (7.6%) discontinued treatment prematurely due to study drug-related adverse events. After 15 days of treatment, the peak concentration of drug in plasma (Cmax), the area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC) from 0 to 24 h (AUC0-24), the concentration in plasma at the end of the dosing interval (predose) (Cmin), and the terminal half-life of itraconazole (ITRA) were (means and standard deviations) 0.604 ± 0.53 μg/ml, 6.80 ± 7.4 μg · h/ml, 0.192 ± 0.06 μg/ml, and 56.48 ± 44 h, respectively, for the QD regimen and 1.340 ± 0.75 μg/ml, 23.04 ± 14.5 μg · h/ml, 0.782 ± 0.19 μg/ml, and 104.22 ± 94 h, respectively, for the BID regimen. The mean AUC-based accumulation factors for ITRA on day 15 were 4.14 ± 0.9 and 3.53 ± 0.6, respectively. A comparison of the dose-normalized median AUC of the two dosage regimens revealed a trend toward nonlinear drug disposition (P = 0.05). The mean metabolic ratios (AUC of hydroxyitraconazole/AUC of ITRA) at day 15 were 1.96 ± 0.1 for the QD regimen and 1.29 ± 0.2 for the BID regimen, respectively (P < 0.05). The OPC score (range, 0 to 13) for all 26 patients decreased from a mean of 7.46 ± 0.8 at baseline to 2.8 ± 0.7 at the end of therapy (P < 0.001), demonstrating antifungal efficacy in this setting. The relationships among Cmax, Cmin, AUC0-12, Cmax/MIC, Cmin/MIC, AUC0-12/MIC, time during the dosing interval when the plasma drug concentrations were above the MIC for the infecting isolate, and the residual OPC score at day 15 for the entire study population fit inhibitory effect pharmacodynamic models (r, 0.595 to 0.421; P, <0.01 to <0.05). All patients with fluconazole-resistant isolates responded to treatment with CD-ITRA; however, there was no clear correlation between the MIC of ITRA and response to therapy. In conclusion, CD-ITRA was well tolerated and efficacious for the treatment of OPC in HIV-infected pediatric patients. Pharmacodynamic modeling revealed significant correlations between plasma drug concentrations and antifungal efficacy. Based on this documented safety and efficacy, a dosage of 2.5 mg/kg BID can be recommended for the treatment of OPC in pediatric patients ≥5 years old.
PMCID: PMC127364  PMID: 12121932
11.  Activity of epiroprim (Ro 11-8958), a dihydrofolate reductase inhibitor, alone and in combination with dapsone against Toxoplasma gondii. 
We examined the effect of epiroprim (Ro 11-8958), a dihydrofolate reductase inhibitor, alone and in combination with dapsone, against Toxoplasma gondii. In vitro, the anti-T. gondii effects of epiroprim and dapsone were observed at nanogram-per-milliliter levels when a 72-h uracil assay and an infection rate of one parasite per 120 macrophages were used. In combination, these drugs exerted a synergistic effect that, however, was only parasitostatic. In a model of acute infection, mice were infected intraperitoneally with 10(4) parasites of the RH strain of T. gondii and were treated for 14 days by gavage (therapy divided into two daily dosages), starting 24 h after infection. Used alone, dapsone and epiroprim, each at a dose of 50 mg/kg of body weight per day, protected 10 and 0% of the mice, respectively. When these drugs were administered simultaneously, a 100% survival rate was observed. Pyrimethamine-sulfadiazine (4 and 250 mg/kg/day, respectively) protected 100% of the mice. A 3-week therapy of chronically infected mice with either epiroprim (50 mg/kg/day), dapsone (50 mg/kg/day), or pyrimethamine (15 mg/kg/day) reduced the numbers of T. gondii cysts and the inflammation in their brains. A combination of epiroprim and dapsone, both at 50 mg/kg/day, further reduced the number of brain cysts in comparison with the number after the corresponding monotherapies. Epiroprim may have a role in the prophylaxis or therapy of human toxoplasmosis, especially when combined with other drugs active against T. gondii, such as dapsone.
PMCID: PMC284639  PMID: 7986011
12.  Rifabutin absorption in the gut unaltered by concomitant administration of didanosine in AIDS patients. 
Didanosine (ddI) is currently used in the management of patients infected by the human immunodeficiency virus. Rifabutin (RBT) is being extensively used for prophylaxis against Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) infections. Due to its acid-labile characteristics, ddI must be administered with a buffer. Recent reports have indicated that absorption of ketoconazole, ciprofloxacin, and dapsone, etc., in the gut is altered by concomitant ddI dosing. We have assessed whether concomitant dosing of ddI as antiretroviral therapy modifies RBT absorption in the gut, its steady-state pharmacokinetics, and/or safety in 15 patients with AIDS. Of the 15 patients enrolled, 12 completed the study and 3 receiving 600 mg of RBT with concomitant ddI administration withdrew prematurely from the study. Steady-state RBT pharmacokinetics were assessed on day 13 (ddI plus RBT) and day 16 (RBT alone). The ddI doses (adjusted for body weight) were 167 to 375 mg twice daily, while RBT was administered as a single 300- or 600-mg daily dose. No statistically significant (P > 0.05) differences were seen in RBT absorption parameter estimates between days 13 and 16: maximum concentration in plasma (Cmax; 511 +/- 341 ng/ml versus 525 +/- 254 ng/ml) and the time at which Cmax was observed (3.0 versus 2.5 h). The mean RBT estimates for area under the concentration-time curve from 0 to 24 h (AUC(0-tau)) (5,650 versus 5,023 ng x h/ml) and for oral clearance (1.28 versus 1.18 liter/h/kg) on both study days were also similar. Assessment based on urinary recovery of RBT (3.1 versus 3.7 mg) and its predominant deacetyl metabolite, LM565 (1.6 versus 1.4 mg), showed no apparent effect of ddI. The fraction of the RBT dose converted to LM565, as suggested by the ratio of AUC of the metabolite to AUC of the parent drug, was also unaltered (0.15 versus 0.12). A ratio analysis (day 13/day 16) of the RBT pharmacokinetic estimates showed that the 95% confidence intervals for all parameters were inclusive of one. Furthermore, the brief interruption of ddI therapy over this short study period at steady state produced no clinically significant changes in body weight, hematology, and renal and pancreatic functions. Therefore, concomitant administration of ddI appears not to affect RBT absorption in the gut and its disposition or safety in patients with AIDS.
PMCID: PMC163960  PMID: 9210686
13.  Comparison of dosages, intervals, and drugs in the prevention of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. 
The efficacies of trimethoprim (TMP)-sulfamethoxazole (SMZ), TMP-dapsone, dapsone, and pentamidine were compared for the prevention of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in the corticosteroid-treated-rat model. While 11 (73%) of 15 untreated control animals had P. carinii pneumonia after 10 weeks of immunosuppression, none of the animals given 125 mg of dapsone per kg daily, weekly, biweekly, or monthly had evidence of infection. Of the 10 rats given a single dose of dapsone 23 and 50 days after immunosuppression was started, 5 (50%) had P. carinii pneumonia. When three drugs were given separately to groups of 10 rats in single doses biweekly, P. carinii pneumonia occurred in 40% of those treated with TMP-SMZ and in none of those treated with TMP-dapsone; although only 2 of those treated with pentamidine survived for evaluation, both had P. carinii pneumonia. The experiments showed that dapsone is highly effective in chemoprophylaxis for P. carinii pneumonia when given at monthly intervals or more frequently and that dapsone and TMP-dapsone are more effective than is TMP-SMZ when given at biweekly intervals. It seems reasonable to expect that biweekly doses of dapsone or TMP-dapsone would provide an effective and reasonably safe chemoprophylaxis regimen for patients at high risk for P. carinii pneumonia, and studies to test such a scheme are justifiable. Biweekly doses are preferred over monthly doses to allow for occasional inadvertent omission of doses expected from patients.
PMCID: PMC172241  PMID: 3260765
14.  Pharmacologic Characteristics of Indinavir, Didanosine, and Stavudine in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Children Receiving Combination Therapy 
The use of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) protease inhibitors in children has lagged behind that in adults because of the lack of suitable pediatric formulations and information on safe and effective dosing regimens. This study was designed to obtain pharmacokinetic information on indinavir, administered to HIV-infected children also receiving therapy with two nucleoside agents, and to explore relationships between pharmacokinetic parameters and anti-HIV effect. Indinavir was initiated at a dose of 500 mg/m2 every 8 h. Plasma indinavir concentrations were measured every 4 weeks; the dose or dosing interval was adjusted to maintain trough concentrations of ≥0.1 mg/liter. All children were evaluated clinically at baseline and every 4 weeks. Plasma HIV RNA was quantitated at baseline and at weeks 4, 12, and 24. Eighteen children participated in this study. The average daily dose of indinavir was 2,043 mg/m2; nine children received indinavir at 6-h intervals. Pharmacokinetic characteristics of indinavir (mean ± standard deviation) were the following: oral clearance, 1.4 ± 0.5 liters/h/kg; half-life, 1.1 ± 0.43 h; and trough concentration, 0.29 ± 0.32 mg/liter. In nine children that completed 24 weeks of therapy, the baseline-to-week-24 change in HIV RNA level was related to indinavir trough concentration and didanosine area under the curve. This study illustrates the ability to obtain pharmacokinetic information from children during routine clinic visits and to use this information to provide a safeguard against underdosing. The incorporation of pharmacologic knowledge with virologic, immunologic, and behavioral considerations should result in improved clinical outcomes for children infected with HIV.
PMCID: PMC89808  PMID: 10722507
15.  Pharmacokinetics of the Protease Inhibitor KNI-272 in Plasma and Cerebrospinal Fluid in Nonhuman Primates after Intravenous Dosing and in Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Children after Intravenous and Oral Dosing 
KNI-272 is a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) protease inhibitor with potent activity in vitro. We studied the pharmacokinetics of KNI-272 in the plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of a nonhuman primate model and after intravenous and oral administration to children with HIV infection. Plasma and CSF were sampled over 24 h after the administration of an intravenous dose of 50 mg of KNI-272 per kg of body weight (approximately 1,000 mg/m2) to three nonhuman primates. The pharmacokinetics of KNI-272 were also studied in 18 children (9 males and 9 females; median age, 9.4 years) enrolled in a phase I trial of four dose levels of KNI-272 (100, 200, 330, and 500 mg/m2 per dose given four times daily). The plasma concentration-time profile of KNI-272 in the nonhuman primate model was characterized by considerable interanimal variability and rapid elimination (clearance, 2.5 liters/h/kg; terminal half-life, 0.54 h). The level of drug exposure achieved in CSF, as measured by the area under the KNI-272 concentration-time curve, was only 1% of that achieved in plasma. The pharmacokinetics of KNI-272 in children were characterized by rapid elimination (clearance, 276 ml/min/m2; terminal half-life, 0.44 h), limited (12%) and apparently saturable bioavailability, and limited distribution (volume of distribution at steady state, 0.11 liter/kg). The concentrations in plasma were maintained above a concentration that is active in vitro for less than half of the 6-h dosing interval. There was no significant increase in CD4 cell counts or decrease in p24 antigen or HIV RNA levels. The pharmacokinetic profile of KNI-272 may limit the drug’s efficacy in vivo. It appears that KNI-272 will play a limited role in the treatment of HIV-infected children.
PMCID: PMC105689  PMID: 9661027
16.  Review of the clinical pharmacokinetics of artesunate and its active metabolite dihydroartemisinin following intravenous, intramuscular, oral or rectal administration 
Malaria Journal  2011;10:263.
Artesunate (AS) is a clinically versatile artemisinin derivative utilized for the treatment of mild to severe malaria infection. Given the therapeutic significance of AS and the necessity of appropriate AS dosing, substantial research has been performed investigating the pharmacokinetics of AS and its active metabolite dihydroartemisinin (DHA). In this article, a comprehensive review is presented of AS clinical pharmacokinetics following administration of AS by the intravenous (IV), intramuscular (IM), oral or rectal routes. Intravenous AS is associated with high initial AS concentrations which subsequently decline rapidly, with typical AS half-life estimates of less than 15 minutes. AS clearance and volume estimates average 2 - 3 L/kg/hr and 0.1 - 0.3 L/kg, respectively. DHA concentrations peak within 25 minutes post-dose, and DHA is eliminated with a half-life of 30 - 60 minutes. DHA clearance and volume average between 0.5 - 1.5 L/kg/hr and 0.5 - 1.0 L/kg, respectively. Compared to IV administration, IM administration produces lower peaks, longer half-life values, and higher volumes of distribution for AS, as well as delayed peaks for DHA; other parameters are generally similar due to the high bioavailability, assessed by exposure to DHA, associated with IM AS administration (> 86%). Similarly high bioavailability of DHA (> 80%) is associated with oral administration. Following oral AS, peak AS concentrations (Cmax) are achieved within one hour, and AS is eliminated with a half-life of 20 - 45 minutes. DHA Cmax values are observed within two hours post-dose; DHA half-life values average 0.5 - 1.5 hours. AUC values reported for AS are often substantially lower than those reported for DHA following oral AS administration. Rectal AS administration yields pharmacokinetic results similar to those obtained from oral administration, with the exceptions of delayed AS Cmax and longer AS half-life. Drug interaction studies conducted with oral AS suggest that AS does not appreciably alter the pharmacokinetics of atovaquone/proguanil, chlorproguanil/dapsone, or sulphadoxine/pyrimethamine, and mefloquine and pyronaridine do not alter the pharmacokinetics of DHA. Finally, there is evidence suggesting that the pharmacokinetics of AS and/or DHA following AS administration may be altered by pregnancy and by acute malaria infection, but further investigation would be required to define those alterations precisely.
PMCID: PMC3180444  PMID: 21914160
17.  Pharmacokinetics of ciprofloxacin in pediatric cystic fibrosis patients. 
The pharmacokinetic characteristics of ciprofloxacin were studied in 10 children with cystic fibrosis, aged from 6 to 16 years, who had completed the standard regimen of intravenous ceftazidime and amikacin. The aim of the investigation was to derive dosing guidelines for young cystic fibrosis patients to be treated with ciprofloxacin. Each child received ciprofloxacin given as two 30-min infusions (10 mg/kg of body weight each) 12 h apart; this was followed by the administration of oral ciprofloxacin (15 mg/kg every 12 h). Blood samples were taken after both infusions and after the first oral dose. A total of 232 ciprofloxacin concentrations (203 concentrations in plasma and 29 concentrations in urine) were analyzed by use of NONMEM and a two-compartment body model with seven parameters: total body clearance (CL), volume of the central compartment (V2), volume of the peripheral compartment (V3), intercompartmental clearance, renal clearance, absorption rate constant, and bioavailability. The influences of weight (range, 18 to 42 kg) and age (range, 6 to 16 years) were investigated. CL (in liters per hour) was found to be linearly correlated with weight (typical value of CL = 8.8 + 0.396. WT, where WT is weight; (interindividual coefficient of variation, 7.8%). V2 and V3 were directly proportional to weight, with slopes of 0.7 and 1.3 liters/kg, respectively. Interindividual variabilities were calculated to be 22.6 and 14.9% for V2 and V3, respectively. No dependency of the other pharmacokinetic parameters on age or weight was seen. Because of the high correlations between age and weight, only one covariable was necessary. Weight had the strongest effect. Bioavailability (population mean) was estimated to be 61.8%, and renal clearance (population mean) was estimated to be 11.4 liters/h. The residual (intraindividual) variability was 31.9%. The protein binding was about 34%, which is similar to the results obtained for adults. In order to define the appropriate dosage regimen for children suffering from cystic fibrosis, a formula was derived so that steady-state concentrations, similar to those obtained in adults after the administration of dosages of 400 mg three times daily intravenously and 750 mg twice daily orally, could be reached. The calculated total daily dose increased with increasing body weight. Given as milligrams per kilogram of body weight, the calculated dosage regimens suggest that for younger children (weight range, 14 to 28 kg), 28 to 20 mg/kg orally twice daily should be given, and for older children (weight range, 28 to 42 kg), 20 to 15 mg/kg orally twice daily should be given. For intravenous administration, dosages of 15 to 10 mg/kg twice daily are sufficient.
PMCID: PMC163051  PMID: 8787874
18.  Pharmacokinetics and safety of levofloxacin in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection. 
Levofloxacin, the bacteriologically active isomer of ofloxacin, has microbiologic activity against many pathogens common in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients, including Mycoplasma species which may be cofactors in the progression of HIV disease. The purpose of this phase I, double-blind, randomized (1:1), placebo-controlled trial was to evaluate the pharmacokinetics and safety of levofloxacin hemihydrate in 10 asymptomatic HIV-infected males. Plasma concentrations by chiral high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) were evaluated for 48 h after a single 350-mg oral dose, at morning predose during the multiple-dosing phase, and for 72 h at steady state after a week of 350 mg every 8 h orally. Mean +/- standard deviation levofloxacin pharmacokinetic parameters (by noncompartmental moment method) after multiple dosing were as follows: area under the concentration-time curve, 31.24 +/- 5.60 mg.h/liter; apparent total body clearance, 11.18 +/- 1.76 liters/h; renal clearance, 8.63 +/- 2.82 liters/h; steady-state volume of distribution, 104.10 +/- 12.48 liters; and effective half-life, 6.50 +/- 0.51 h. Single-dose parameters were not significantly different from the multiple-dose parameters, with the exception of peak concentrations in plasma, which were 4.79 +/- 1.00 and 6.92 +/- 1.56 mg/liter for single- and multiple-dose data, respectively. Essentially identical parameter values were obtained from curve-fitting analysis when the entire 13-day plasma concentration profiles of the subjects were analyzed simultaneously by a two-compartmental distribution model. Levofloxacin pharmacokinetics in HIV-infected patients remained linear upon multiple dosing. The dosing regimen studied provides levels in plasma and urine well above those found to be effective in vitro against pathogens common in HIV-infected patients. Levofloxacin was well- tolerated in this group of asymptomatic HIV-infected males: there were no statistically significant differences in adverse effects in the two groups (P = 0.22). Use of placebo control helped to differentiate disease-related adverse effects from those related to the study drug.
PMCID: PMC284545  PMID: 8031049
19.  Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Tolerability of Voriconazole in Immunocompromised Children▿  
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  2010;54(10):4116-4123.
The pharmacokinetics of voriconazole in children receiving 4 mg/kg intravenously (i.v.) demonstrate substantially lower plasma exposures (as defined by area under the concentration-time curve [AUC]) than those in adults receiving the same therapeutic dosage. These differences in pharmacokinetics between children and adults limit accurate prediction of pediatric voriconazole exposure based on adult dosages. We therefore studied the pharmacokinetics and tolerability of higher dosages of an i.v.-to-oral regimen of voriconazole in immunocompromised children aged 2 to <12 years in two dosage cohorts for the prevention of invasive fungal infections. The first cohort received 4 mg/kg i.v. every 12 h (q12h), then 6 mg/kg i.v. q12h, and then 4 mg/kg orally (p.o.) q12h; the second received 6 mg/kg i.v. q12h, then 8 mg/kg i.v. q12h, and then 6 mg/kg p.o. q12h. The mean values for the AUC over the dosing interval (AUCτ) for 4 mg/kg and 6 mg/kg i.v. in cohort 1 were 11,827 and 22,914 ng·h/ml, respectively, whereas the mean AUCτ values for 6 mg/kg and 8 mg/kg i.v. in cohort 2 were 17,249 and 29,776 ng·h/ml, respectively. High interpatient variability was observed. The bioavailability of the oral formulation in children was approximately 65%. The safety profiles were similar in the two cohorts and age groups. The most common treatment-related adverse event was increased gamma glutamyl transpeptidase levels. There was no correlation between adverse events and voriconazole exposure. In summary, voriconazole was tolerated to a similar degree regardless of dosage and age; the mean plasma AUCτ for 8 mg/kg i.v. in children approached that for 4 mg/kg i.v. in adults, thus representing a rationally selected dosage for the pediatric population.
PMCID: PMC2944563  PMID: 20660687
20.  Effect of atovaquone and atovaquone drug combinations on prophylaxis of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in SCID mice. 
The prophylactic efficacies of atovaquone (ATQ) alone and in combination with azithromycin, clarithromycin, rifabutin, proguanil, PS-15, trimethoprim, co-trimoxazole, or dapsone were investigated in a SCID mouse model of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP). ATQ alone was shown to have a significant dose-related effect, and at 200 mg/kg of body weight per day administered orally, the efficacy of ATQ was comparable to that of Septrin (co-trimoxazole). Of the drugs investigated orally in combination with ATQ, only dapsone (25 mg/kg/day) and to a lesser extent PS-15 (5 mg/kg/day) had any noteworthy antipneumocystis activity (at the doses examined) when administered alone. ATQ drug combinations affected the prophylactic efficacy of a subcurative dosage of ATQ (50 mg/kg/day given orally) in the following ways: dapsone (25 mg/kg/day) or co-trimoxazole (25 mg of sulfamethoxazole plus 5 mg of trimethoprim per kg/day) had no significant effect on ATQ, azithromycin (200 mg/kg/day) or clarithromycin (200 mg/kg/day) had a slight additive effect with ATQ, trimethoprim (100 mg/kg/day) or PS-15 (5 mg/kg/day) had an additive effect with ATQ, and proguanil (25 mg/kg/day) or rifabutin (200 mg/kg/day) had a marked synergistic effect on ATQ. The last result was particularly noteworthy as neither proguanil nor rifabutin was effective against PCP when administered alone. None of the drugs examined antagonized the prophylactic activity of ATQ in experimental PCP in SCID mice. The results suggest that clinical trials of ATQ with synergistic drug combinations may now be justified, particularly if such drug combinations improve ATQ's efficacy and broaden its spectrum of activity.
PMCID: PMC162633  PMID: 7785975
21.  Pyrimethamine inhibits renal secretion of creatinine. 
The mechanism of increased serum creatinine after administration of pyrimethamine and dapsone was evaluated for six healthy volunteers. Serum parameters, urine sediment, and clearances of creatinine, inulin, and para-aminohippurate were assessed prior to and 28 h after the ingestion of a single, combined dose of 100 mg of pyrimethamine and 200 mg of dapsone. In a second series, the same renal function tests were performed for nine human immunodeficiency virus-infected men before and after 1 month of prophylactic treatment with a weekly dose of 75 mg of pyrimethamine and 200 mg of dapsone to evaluate sustained effects on renal function. Serum creatinine increased within 28 h from 81 +/- 14 to 102 +/- 16 mumol/liter (P = 0.002) in the healthy volunteers. Blood urea nitrogen, beta 2-microglobulin, and urine remained normal. Creatinine clearance decreased from 125 +/- 27 to 91 +/- 26 ml/min (P < 0.02) without changes in inulin clearance. The effect was reversible within 21 days and attributable to pyrimethamine, as determined by administration of each drug alone. The sustained effect of four doses of pyrimethamine and dapsone in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients consisted of an analogous rise in serum creatinine from 69 +/- 17 to 87 +/- 32 mumol/liter (P < 0.05). Both creatinine and inulin clearances, however, were unchanged, representing a new equilibrium between creatinine production and elimination at a higher level in serum. Pyrimethamine, thus, may reversibly inhibit renal tubular secretion of creatinine without affecting the glomerular filtration rate. This physiologic effect in pyrimethamine-treated patients must be differentiated from possible organ-related nephropathies.
PMCID: PMC187895  PMID: 8517692
22.  Didanosine Population Pharmacokinetics in West African Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Children Administered Once-Daily Tablets in Relation to Efficacy after One Year of Treatment▿ †  
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  2009;53(10):4399-4406.
Our objective was to study didanosine pharmacokinetics in children after the administration of tablets, the only formulation available in Burkina Faso for which data are missing, and to establish relationships between doses, plasma drug concentrations, and treatment effects (efficacy/toxicity). Didanosine concentrations were measured for 40 children after 2 weeks and for 9 children after 2 to 5 months of treatment with a didanosine-lamivudine-efavirenz combination. A population pharmacokinetic model was developed with NONMEM. The link between the maximal concentration of the drug in plasma (Cmax), the area under the concentration-time curve (AUC), and the decrease in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 RNA levels after 12 months of treatment was evaluated. The threshold AUC that improved efficacy was determined by the use of a Wilcoxon test for HIV RNA, and an optimized dosing schedule was simulated. Didanosine pharmacokinetics was best described by a one-compartment model with first-order absorption and elimination. The apparent clearance and volume of distribution were higher for tablets, probably due to a lower bioavailability with tablets than with pediatric powder. The decrease in the viral load after 12 months of treatment was significantly correlated with the didanosine AUC and Cmax (P ≤ 0.02) during the first weeks of treatment. An AUC of >0.60 mg/liter·h was significantly linked to a greater decrease in the viral load (a decrease of 3 log10 versus 2.4 log10 copies/ml; P = 0.03) than that with a lower AUC. A didanosine dose of 360 mg/m2 administered as tablets should be a more appropriate dose than 240 mg/m2 to improve efficacy for these children. However, data on adverse events with this dosage are missing.
PMCID: PMC2764159  PMID: 19581461
23.  Evaluation of effects of altered gastric pH on absorption of dapsone in healthy volunteers. 
A prospective, randomized, crossover study was performed with seven healthy volunteers to address the effect of increased gastric pH on dapsone absorption. Subjects were randomized to receive a single 100-mg dose of dapsone or a single 100-mg dose of dapsone in addition to 30 ml of a high potency antacid 1 h before dapsone administration and hourly thereafter for a total of 10 doses. Dapsone concentrations in serum were measured periodically for 48 h. No statistical differences between the two regimens were noted when mean dapsone maximal initial concentrations, times to peak, and areas under the curve were compared. These data suggest that an increase in gastric pH has little or no effect on the absorption of dapsone in healthy subjects.
PMCID: PMC284721  PMID: 7811056
24.  Single-dose pharmacokinetics of ceftibuten (SCH 39720) in infants and children. 
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  1991;35(10):2078-2084.
Ceftibuten (CFB), a new broad-spectrum cephalosporin for oral administration, possesses potent activity in vitro against a wide range of gram-negative and certain gram-positive pathogens frequently encountered in pediatric patients. Its antimicrobial spectrum and dosage formulation suggest a use for CFB in the treatment of otitis media and upper and lower respiratory and urinary tract infections in infants and children. To assess the pharmacokinetic characteristics of CFB in pediatric patients, we completed a multicenter investigation of 49 children (26 females) between the ages of 6 months and 17 years who had normal hepatic and renal functions and no evidence of chronic disease. Pharmacokinetic parameters were determined from repeated blood samples (n = 12) and, when possible, quantitative urine collections (n = 7) obtained over a 12- to 24-h period following a single oral CFB dose of either 4.5 or 9.0 mg/kg of body weight. CFB was quantitated from plasma and urine samples by using a sensitive, microanalytical high-pressure liquid chromatography method. The drug was rapidly absorbed (mean time to maximum concentration in serum = 140 min) and produced apparent peak concentrations in plasma (Cmax) ranging from 5.0 to 19.0 mg/liter. Average CFB pharmacokinetic parameters (+/- standard deviations) were as follows: apparent elimination half-life, 2.0 +/- 0.5 h; mean residence time, 3.9 +/- 1.1 h; apparent steady-state volume of distribution, 0.4 +/- 0.2 liter/kg; and apparent total plasma clearance (CL/F), 2.5 +/- 0.9 ml/min/kg. No significant differences in any of the pharmacokinetic parameters were observed between the two dosing groups. Significant (P < 0.05) negative correlations were found between patient age and CFB elimination half-life and CL/F and between the estimated creatinine clearance and renal clearance and CL/F. Apparent age dependence of CFB disposition was also reflected by a greater CL/F in children from 0.5 to less than or equal 5 years of age (3.1 +/- 1.1 ml/min/kg) than in children > 10 years of age (2.0 +/- 0.6 ml/min/kg; P < 0.005). The increased CL/f for CFB (3.0 +/- 0.5 ml/min/kg) was corroborated by a validation study performed with 11 infants (1.0 +/- 0.5 ml/min/kg) with CL/F for 19 subjects suggested that appreciable nonrenal clearance (1.3 +/- 0.6 ml/min/kg) of CFB occurred in children, a finding different from preliminary data for adults.
PMCID: PMC245329  PMID: 1759830
25.  Low Levels of Pyrazinamide and Ethambutol in Children with Tuberculosis and Impact of Age, Nutritional Status, and Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection 
Recent pharmacokinetic studies that included children found that serum drug levels were low compared to those of adults for whom the same dosages were used. This study aimed to characterize the pharmacokinetics of pyrazinamide and ethambutol in Malawian children and to examine the impact of age, nutritional status, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. We conducted a pharmacokinetic study of children treated for tuberculosis with thrice-weekly pyrazinamide (n = 27; mean age, 5.7 years) and of a separate group of children treated with thrice-weekly ethambutol (n = 18; mean age, 5.5 years) as portions of tablets according to national guidelines. Malnutrition and HIV infection were common in both groups. Blood samples were taken just prior to oral administration of the first dose, and subsequent samples were taken at intervals of 2, 3, 4, 7, 24, and 48 h after drug administration. Serum drug levels were low in all children for both drugs; in almost all cases, the maximum concentration of the drug in serum (Cmax) failed to reach the MIC for Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The Cmax of pyrazinamide was significantly lower in younger children (<5 years) than in older children. The Cmax of pyrazinamide was also lower for HIV-infected children and children with severe malnutrition, but these differences did not reach statistical significance. No differences were found for ethambutol in relation to age, HIV infection, or malnutrition, but the Cmax was <2 mg/liter in all cases. Studies of pharmacokinetic parameters and clinical outcomes obtained by using higher dosages of drugs for treatment of childhood tuberculosis are needed, and recommended dosages may need to be increased.
PMCID: PMC1366879  PMID: 16436690

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