Pharmacokinetic Considerations in the Use of Antivirals in Neonates
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Neonatal patients, because of the inability of their immune system to properly respond to microbial challenge, are highly susceptible to viral infections. Immunoglobulins, monoclonal antibody and antiviral drugs are used for prophylaxis and treatment of viral diseases in neonates. Neonates and, especially, preterm infants differ in drug absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion from adults and older children.
This review will evaluate deficiencies of neonatal immune responses to microbial challenge that predispose newborns to viral infections, clinical manifestations and the treatment of viral diseases in neonates. We focus on published studies describing antiviral drug pharmacokinetics in neonates and make recommendations on the dosing of these drugs, allowing achievement of maximal clinical benefits in neonates.
While some efforts were undertaken to study pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of antiviral drugs, much more needs to be done. Current data indicate that the pharmacokinetics of antiviral drugs may vary significantly depending on gestational age, maturation processes of drug-metabolizing enzymes and renal clearance. Specifics of pharmacokinetics of antiviral drugs need to be taken into consideration when they are prescribed to neonates and infants.
Enioutina, E. Y.,
Constance, J. E.,
Linakis, M. W.,
Rower, J. E.,
Balch, A. H.,
& Sherwin, C. M.
(2015). Pharmacokinetic Considerations in the Use of Antivirals in Neonates. Expert Opinion on Drug Metabolism & Toxicology, 11 (12), 1861-1878.