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J Endocrinol Invest. 2000 Jul-Aug;23(7):482-90.

The metabolic effects of cyclosporin and tacrolimus.

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  • 1Dipartimento di Endocrinologia e Metabolismo, University of Pisa, Italy.


The introduction of cyclosporin and, more recently, tacrolimus in the immunosuppression of transplanted patients has lead to prolonged graft survival and increased patients' life expectancy. It has been therefore possible to evaluate the effects of long-term treatment with these drugs and metabolic alterations in patients on cyclosporin or tacrolimus have been reported by several authors. In particular, the use of these drugs is associated with abnormalities of glucose and lipid metabolism. Post-transplant diabetes is more common with tacrolimus, probably due to more marked effects on the pancreatic beta-cells, whereas increased levels of cholesterol and triglycerides are more frequently associated with cyclosporin treatment, even though, in this latter case, steroid treatment seems to play a major role. Comparison and intervention studies must be planned to evaluate the best therapeutical approaches to control these abnormalities and to assess the possibility to further increase graft and patient survival by appropriate treatment of diabetes and hyperlipidemia.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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