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To review the evidence regarding treatment of herpes zoster (HZ) in the short-term, focusing on the prevention of postherpetic neuralgia (PHN).
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The purpose of this paper was to present a case series of self-limiting, peripheral acute retinal necrosis and to demonstrate efficacy of treatment with valacyclovir in patients resistant to acyclovir. The diagnosis was made on ophthalmoscopic examination and positive serum tests for herpes viruses.
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A 57-year-old woman with herpes labialis and previously diagnosed with vestibular neuritis experienced recurrences of vertigo and disequilibrium. Initially preceded by oral herpes outbreaks or upper respiratory infections, these recurrences became spontaneous and more frequent. Vestibular function demonstrated a 25% decrease in energy function in the right and the patient had left beating nystagmus on positional maneuver. Her reoccurrences of vestibular disturbances were followed up. Concurrently, she was prescribed daily valacyclovir (500 mg, 1 per day) given for the prevention of herpes labialis outbreaks by her primary care physician. Recurrences of disequilibrium stopped completely as well as oral herpes outbreaks.
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In this paper, data from a clinical trial of a new antiviral agent for treating patients with zoster are used to answer the following question: Does the Nottingham Health Profile (NHP) add to the information obtained from the clinical measures? Three ways in which the NHP could add information are measured. First, Cox's regression analysis is used to determine whether health-related quality-of-life scores obtained at diagnosis give information about disease prognosis. Second, changes in mean NHP scores in different dimensions are computed after pain resolution to determine whether NHP scores provide more sensitive indicators of disease resolution. Third, linear regression is used to determine whether the impacts of disease on quality of life are measured adequately by the clinical parameters. These analyses show that use of the physical mobility and energy dimensions of the NHP increases understanding of disease prognosis; demonstrates the continuing impact of zoster on patients' sleep patterns and energy levels, disease symptoms not included as clinical measures, that persist after the cessation of zoster-associated pain; and gives a measure of the impact of zoster on the patient, which includes unmeasured and measured levels of severity.
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A recent study comparing single-dose vs. single-day bid famciclovir and placebo in the treatment of herpes labialis demonstrated single-dose famciclovir to be as efficacious as single-day bid dosing in time to healing of lesions and more efficacious than single-day bid famciclovir in time to resolution of pain and tenderness. Both were statistically superior to placebo. When results of this study were compared with recently published results of other frequently prescribed treatments, single-dose famciclovir appeared to produce similar or better improvements in healing time and duration of pain.
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Oral herpes simplex virus, or HSV, infections recur after trauma and stress. The prevalence of these infections after dental procedures is not known. Also, it is unclear whether antiviral agents are effective in preventing dental procedure-induced HSV recurrences. This study determined the efficacy and safety of oral valacyclovir in suppressing dentally related cold sore outbreak and HSV shedding.
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For D+R- renal transplant patients, prophylaxis is the dominant (more effective and less costly) management strategy compared with pre-emptive and wait-and-treat strategies. The cost per patient with oral valaciclovir prophylaxis compared with intravenous ganciclovir prophylaxis is slightly higher in our base case scenario, but may be lower under reasonable alternative assumptions.
Corneal astigmatism can appear after herpetic keratitis. An arcuate keratotomy was effective in this case to decrease astigmatism and improve her vision. Keratitis reactivation is possible so antiviral prophylaxis is advisable. Our good results show that arcuate keratotomy can be a useful technique for these patients.
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The medical records of 29 patients younger than 16 years with HSV keratitis who were diagnosed and treated at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Taoyuan, Taiwan, between 1996 and 2004 were retrospectively reviewed. The diagnosis of HSV keratitis was proven by a positive viral culture and/or real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction or by a clear history of dendritic keratitis or herpetic kerato-uveitis. Type of HSV keratitis, recurrence rate, and visual outcome were analyzed.
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The role of antiviral prophylaxis for the prevention of posttransplant lymphoproliferative disease (PTLD) remains controversial for solid organ transplantation (SOT) recipients who are seronegative for Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) but who received organs from seropositive donors. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to address this issue. Two independent assessors extracted data from studies after determining patient eligibility and completing quality assessments. Overall, 31 studies were identified and included in the quantitative synthesis. Nine studies were included in the direct comparisons (total 2366 participants), and 22 were included in the indirect analysis. There was no significant difference in the rate of EBV-associated PTLD in SOT recipients among those who received prophylaxis (acyclovir, valacyclovir, ganciclovir, valganciclovir) compared with those who did not receive prophylaxis (nine studies; risk ratio 0.95, 95% confidence interval 0.58-1.54). No significant differences were noted across all types of organ transplants, age groups, or antiviral use as prophylaxis or preemptive therapy. There was no significant heterogeneity in the effect of antiviral prophylaxis on the incidence of PTLD. In conclusion, the use of antiviral prophylaxis in high-risk EBV-naive patients has no effect on the incidence of PTLD in SOT recipients.
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Data were collected from the Scandinavian Bell's palsy study. A total of 829 patients were treated within 72 hours of onset of palsy. Follow-up was 12 months.
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Herpes genitalis is one of the most common viral sexually transmitted diseases in the world, with an estimated seroprevalence in the US of greater than 20%. Two viruses of the same family cause herpes genitalis: herpes simplex virus 1 and 2. After the resolution of primary infection, the virus persists in the nerve roots of the sacral plexus, often causing recurrent (though generally less severe) outbreaks. These outbreaks, as well as the infectious potential to the patient's sexual partners, results in significant psychological stress on the patient, and has a tremendous negative impact on QOL. Current treatment modalities may result in a reduction in the number of outbreaks and viral shedding, but no cure exists. Although studies have clearly demonstrated the negative impact of recurrent genital herpes on QOL, an assessment scale specific to herpes was not developed until recently. Earlier studies indicated that patients did not perceive a significant benefit from episodic treatment with antivirals, but studies using the Recurrent Genital Herpes Quality of Life Questionnaire (RGHQoL) have now demonstrated that suppressive antiviral therapy improves quality of life in patients with frequent recurrences of genital herpes. However, not all patients with recurrent genital herpes need suppressive therapy, and proposed factors to consider include frequency of recurrence, physical and psychological distress caused by recurrences, and the potential for transmission to the patient's sexual partner. Newer therapeutic modalities, including the topical immune response modifier resiquimod and herpes vaccines, may eventually be shown to further decrease the psychological morbidity of recurrent genital herpes.
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MANY SPECIES OF TSETSE FLIES (DIPTERA: Glossinidae) are infected with a virus that causes salivary gland hypertrophy (SGH), and flies with SGH symptoms have a reduced fecundity and fertility. The prevalence of SGH in wild tsetse populations is usually very low (0.2%-5%), but higher prevalence rates (15.2%) have been observed occasionally. The successful eradication of a Glossina austeni population from Unguja Island (Zanzibar) using an area-wide integrated pest management approach with a sterile insect technique (SIT) component (1994-1997) encouraged several African countries, including Ethiopia, to incorporate the SIT in their national tsetse control programs. A large facility to produce tsetse flies for SIT application in Ethiopia was inaugurated in 2007. To support this project, a Glossina pallidipes colony originating from Ethiopia was successfully established in 1996, but later up to 85% of adult flies displayed symptoms of SGH. As a result, the colony declined and became extinct by 2002. The difficulties experienced with the rearing of G. pallidipes, epitomized by the collapse of the G. pallidipes colony originating from Ethiopia, prompted the urgent need to develop management strategies for the salivary gland hypertrophy virus (SGHV) for this species. As a first step to identify suitable management strategies, the virus isolated from G. pallidipes (GpSGHV) was recently sequenced and research was initiated on virus transmission and pathology. Different approaches to prevent virus replication and its horizontal transmission during blood feeding have been proposed. These include the use of antiviral drugs such as acyclovir and valacyclovir added to the blood for feeding or the use of antibodies against SGHV virion proteins. In addition, preliminary attempts to silence the expression of an essential viral protein using RNA interference will be discussed.
In the present investigation, the uptake and transport kinetics of valacyclovir (VACV), 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA), and benzylpenicillin (BENZ) were studied in stably transfected Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK)/human peptide transporter 1 (hPepT1)-V5&His clonal cell lines expressing varying levels of epitope-tagged hPepT1 protein (low, medium, and high expression) and in Caco-2 cells to delineate hPepT1-mediated transport kinetics. These compounds were selected due to the fact that they are known PepT1 substrates, yet also have affinity for other transporters. Caco-2 cells, traditionally used for studying peptide-based drug transport, were included for comparison purposes. The time, pH, sodium, and concentration dependence of cellular uptake and permeability were measured using mock, clonal hPepT1-MDCK, and Caco-2 cells. A pH-dependent effect was observed in the hPepT1-expressing clones and Caco-2 cells, with an increase of 1.96-, 1.84-, and 2.05-fold for VACV, 5-ALA, and BENZ uptake, respectively, at pH 6 versus 7.4 in the high-expressing hPepT1 cells. BENZ uptake was significantly decreased in Caco-2 and MDCK cells in Na(+)-depleted buffer, whereas VACV uptake only decreased in Caco-2 cells. Concentration-dependent uptake studies in the mock-corrected hPepT1-MDCK and Caco-2 cells demonstrated hPepT1 affinity ranking of VACV > 5-ALA > BENZ. The apical-to-basal apparent permeability coefficient (P(app)) values of VACV, 5-ALA, and BENZ in mock-corrected hPepT1-MDCK cells showed solely hPepT1-mediated transport in contrast to Caco-2 cells. Lower K(m) values and higher P(app) in Caco-2 cells compared with hPepT1-MDCK cells suggested the involvement of multiple transporters in Caco-2 cells. Thus, hPepT1-MDCK cells corrected for endogenous transporter expression may be a more appropriate model for screening compounds for their affinity to hPepT1.
With the intention-to-treat principle and last-observation-carried-forward method (n = 829) and recovery defined as Sunnybrook 100, 300 of the 416 patients (72%) receiving prednisolone had recovered compared with 237 of the 413 (57%) who did not receive prednisolone (P < .0001). With recovery defined as House-Brackmann grade I, the corresponding recovery rates were 324 of 416 (78%) and 266 of 413 (64%) (P < .0001). With complete-case analysis and recovery defined House-Brackmann grade I (n = 782), 335 of 389 patients (86%) given prednisolone recovered compared with 277 of 393 (70%) in the group not given prednisolone (P < .0001). With recovery defined as House-Brackmann < or =grade II (n = 797), the corresponding recovery rates were 380 of 396 (96%) and 353 of 401 (88%) (P < .0001). The analysis method affected the recovery rates in the valacyclovir and no-valacyclovir groups in a similar way as in the prednisolone and no-prednisolone groups.
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A 52-year-old male presented with acute retinal necrosis in his left eye. Slit lamp examination revealed stellate keratic precipitates and cells in the anterior chamber and vitreous. Funduscopy of his left eye revealed multiple yellow deposits. Pathological examination of the vitreous showed both small, reactive lymphocytes and a few macrophages. IL-6 and IFN-γ were elevated in the vitreous. Microdissected macrophages from the vitreous revealed DNAs from multiple viruses. The patient responded to oral valacyclovir. We conclude that multiple viral infections can be involved in the pathogenesis of acute retinal necrosis and that adequate anti-viral therapy has a beneficial effect on disease progression. However, retinal detachment can be a consequence for a poor visual outcome.
To assess safety and tolerability, we administered valacyclovir, an oral anti-viral medication that inhibits erythrocyte sickling in vitro, to 14 subjects with sickle-cell anemia for 1 week at a standard dose of 1,000 mg every 8 hr. No clinically significant adverse effects occurred. In 11 subjects in steady state, the mean hemoglobin concentration was almost constant while the absolute reticulocyte count decreased in eight (P = 0.1) and the overall mean fell slightly although not significantly (10%, P = 0.2). These results suggest that valacyclovir is safe and well tolerated in patients with sickle-cell anemia and that a longer duration of therapy merits investigation.
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Chemical modification to improve biopharmaceutical properties, especially oral absorption and bioavailability, is a common strategy employed by pharmaceutical chemists. The approach often employs a simple structural modification and utilizes ubiquitous endogenous esterases as activation enzymes, although such enzymes are often unidentified. This report describes the crystal structure and specificity of a novel activating enzyme for valacyclovir and valganciclovir. Our structural insights show that human valacyclovirase has a unique binding mode and specificity for amino acid esters. Biochemical data demonstrate that the enzyme hydrolyzes esters of alpha-amino acids exclusively and displays a broad specificity spectrum for the aminoacyl moiety similar to tricorn-interacting aminopeptidase F1. Crystal structures of the enzyme, two mechanistic mutants, and a complex with a product analogue, when combined with biochemical analysis, reveal the key determinants for substrate recognition; that is, a flexible and mostly hydrophobic acyl pocket, a localized negative electrostatic potential, a large open leaving group-accommodating groove, and a pivotal acidic residue, Asp-123, after the nucleophile Ser-122. This is the first time that a residue immediately after the nucleophile has been found to have its side chain directed into the substrate binding pocket and play an essential role in substrate discrimination in serine hydrolases. These results as well as a phylogenetic analysis establish that the enzyme functions as a specific alpha-amino acid ester hydrolase. Valacyclovirase is a valuable target for amino acid ester prodrug-based oral drug delivery enhancement strategies.
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Cats were infected with FHV-1 strain 87-727 (300 microliters, 10(7) plaque-forming units/ml) by ocular and nasal inoculations, and were treated every 6 hours with dextrose (controls) or valacyclovir (60 mg/kg of body weight, PO). Virus shedding from both eyes and the oropharynx was monitored every 2 days by virus isolation, and subjective clinical scores were assigned daily for ocular and nasal discharge and conjunctival hyperemia. Urinalysis, CBC, and serum biochemical analysis were done prior to inoculation, and on days 2, 5, 7, 9, and 12 of infection. Differences in CBC and serum biochemical indices between groups were compared, as were differences between preinfection values and maximal postinfection values, rectal temperature, and scores for disease severity.
Volunteer sample of 42 male wrestlers from 13 to 31 years of age. For inclusion, patients had to have recurrent herpes gladiatorum and be active in a wrestling program.
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Little is known about the implications of performing a renal transplant on a patient who is already pregnant. This case study reports a successful outcome of pregnancy, diagnosed coincidentally following renal transplantation at 13 weeks gestation. The recipient was a 23-year-old woman with chronic kidney disease who received a live-related renal transplant from her father. Pregnancy was discovered at routine ultrasound scanning of the renal allograft at 5 days posttransplant and estimated at 13 weeks gestation. She received ciclosporin monotherapy as immunosuppression throughout the pregnancy, and was given valacyclovir as prophylaxis against cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection. Renal function remained stable throughout the pregnancy, which progressed normally, resulting in the vaginal delivery of a healthy, liveborn male infant at 37 weeks gestation. This case study demonstrates that transplantation during pregnancy can have a successful outcome.
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Questions are being raised about the efficacy of oral ganciclovir (Cytovene) in preventing cytomegalovirus (CMV), and the toxicity of valaciclovir, a derivative of acyclovir, when administered in high doses. Two government studies (Syntex 1654 and CPCRA 023) of oral ganciclovir have resulted in conflicting results. The studies are under investigation in an attempt to resolve the differences. CPCRA has led to concerns about Cytovene, including its potential for resistance and its relatively high cost. Another study shows two grams of valaciclovir, four times per day, produces the same blood levels as intravenous acyclovir. However, both are toxic levels and neither drug is viewed as particularly effective.
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70 subjects were randomized to receive valacyclovir 1 g daily or placebo in a crossover design for 60 days with a 7-day washout period. A daily swab of the genital/anal-rectal area was self-collected for HSV-2 detection by PCR. Subjects attended the clinic for routine study visits and GH recurrence visits. Treatment differences were assessed using a nonparametric crossover analysis.
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More head-to-head studies are needed to determine the most efficacious and cost-effective short-course regimens for recurrent genital herpes.
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Peak acyclovir plasma concentrations (mean +/- standard deviation) were higher in valacyclovir recipients than in acyclovir recipients after the initial dose (3.14 +/- 0.7 microg/mL vs 0.74 +/- 0.6 microg/mL, P < .0001) and at steady state (3.03 +/- 1.0 microg/mL vs 0.94 +/- 0.7 microg/mL, P < .001). The daily area under the curve values were higher in valacyclovir recipients than acyclovir recipients after the initial dose (17.8 +/- 3.6 h x microg/mL vs 7.71 +/- 2.5 h x microg/mL, P < .001) and at steady state (19.65 +/- 6.4 h x microg/mL versus 11.0 +/- 4.5 h x microg/mL, P = .009). There was no significant difference in drug elimination half-life or in time to peak concentration between valacyclovir and acyclovir recipients at either sampling interval. Acyclovir was concentrated in the amniotic fluid; however, there was no evidence of preferential fetal drug accumulation (mean maternal/umbilical vein plasma ratios at delivery were 1.7 for valacyclovir and 1.3 for acyclovir). Valacyclovir was well tolerated, and no significant laboratory or clinical evidence of toxicity was detected.
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Mice were infected via the ear pinna using a recombinant strain of HSV-1 expressing the beta-gal gene under the LAT promoter. Mice were treated continuously with valaciclovir or famciclovir, from 1 day before or 1 day after virus inoculation for 10 days. Ipsilateral and contralateral trigeminal and cervical ganglia were later assessed by co-cultivation or for X-Gal-positive or LAT-positive neurons. Latency was markedly reduced by early therapy, however, a basal level of HSV-1-positive neurons was detected in all mice.
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All patients received famciclovir or valacyclovir without antecedent intravenous therapy. One patient with bilateral ARN treated with famciclovir received a single intravitreal injection of foscarnet in the more severely involved eye.
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No abstract available (Letter to the editor).
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A double-blind, randomized, controlled, multicenter clinical trial in which patients received 7 days of treatment and were followed up for 24 weeks.