Double blind placebo-controlled trial of pleconaril in infants with enterovirus meningitis

The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal
Mark J AbzugNational Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Collaborative Antiviral Study Group


Enterovirus (EV) meningitis is common in infants and may have neurologic complications. Treatment of older children and adults with pleconaril has been associated with reduced severity and duration of symptoms. This study evaluated the pharmacokinetics, safety and efficacy of pleconaril in infants with EV meningitis. Infants < or =12 months old with suspected EV meningitis were randomized 2:1 to receive pleconaril, 5 mg/kg/dose orally three times a day or placebo for 7 days. Evaluations included pharmacokinetic determinations, safety laboratory testing, serial culture and PCR assays and clinical evaluations. Of 21 evaluable subjects 20 were confirmed with EV infection (12 pleconaril, 8 placebo). Among pleconaril-treated subjects 26 of 29 peak and trough pleconaril levels exceeded the 90% inhibitory concentration for EVs. A median 3.5-fold drug accumulation occurred between Days 2 and 7. Pleconaril was well-tolerated, although twice as many adverse events occurred per subject in the pleconaril group. Serial cultures from the oropharynx, rectum and serum had low yield (< or =50%) and positivity generally persisted for <4 days in both groups. Serial PCR assays of culture-negative oropharyngeal and rectal specimens had high positiv...Continue Reading


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