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Orphan drugs for the treatment of aspergillosis: focus on isavuconazole

Authors Jacobs SE, Petraitis V, Small CB, Walsh TJ

Received 3 November 2016

Accepted for publication 5 January 2017

Published 3 May 2017 Volume 2017:7 Pages 37—46


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Lise Aagaard

Samantha E Jacobs,1 Vidmantas Petraitis,1 Catherine B Small,1 Thomas J Walsh1–3

1Transplantation-Oncology Infectious Diseases Program, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, 2Department of Pediatrics, 3Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, NY, USA

Abstract: Invasive aspergillosis (IA) is a particularly devastating manifestation of Aspergillus infection affecting profoundly immunocompromised patients. Voriconazole has been approved as first-line therapy for IA since 2003; however, nonlinear pharmacokinetics, adverse effects, and drug–drug interactions at time hinder its use. Isavuconazole is a new broad-spectrum triazole with potent activity against Aspergillus species. In animal models and clinical trials in humans, isavuconazole has shown comparable efficacy to that of voriconazole in the treatment of IA. Advantages of isavuconazole include a more favorable pharmacokinetic profile and fewer adverse events. This review summarizes the pharmacologic characteristics, in vitro activity, and clinical data supporting the use of isavuconazole as an emerging alternative therapy for IA.

Keywords: isavuconazole, invasive aspergillosis, antifungal therapy, fungal infection

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