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Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2011 Jul;55(7):3195-200. doi: 10.1128/AAC.01598-10. Epub 2011 May 2.

Pharmacokinetics of lopinavir in HIV-infected adults receiving rifampin with adjusted doses of lopinavir-ritonavir tablets.

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  • 1Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, Groote Schuur Hospital, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.


Rifampin coadministration dramatically reduces plasma lopinavir (LPV) concentrations. In healthy volunteers, doubling the dose of a lopinavir-ritonavir (LPV/r) capsule formulation overcame this interaction, but a subsequent study of double doses of the tablet formulation was stopped early owing to hepatotoxicity. However, healthy-volunteer study findings may not apply to HIV-infected adults. We evaluated the steady-state pharmacokinetics of LPV in HIV-infected adults virologically suppressed on an LPV/r regimen who were given rifampin, and the dose of the LPV/r tablet formulation was gradually increased. The steady-state pharmacokinetics of LPV/r were evaluated at baseline, a week after commencing rifampin, a week after the LPV/r dose was increased 1.5 times, and a week after the LPV/r dose was doubled. Twenty-one participants were enrolled. The median [interquartile range (IQR)] predose LPV concentrations (C(0)) were 8.1 (6.2 to 9.8) mg/liter at baseline, 1.7 (0.3 to 3.0) mg/liter after 7 days of rifampin, 5.9 (2.1 to 9.9) mg/liter with 1.5 times the dose of LPV/r, and 10.8 (7.0 to 13.1) mg/liter with double-dose LPV/r. There were no significant differences in the LPV area under the plasma concentration-time curve from 0 to 12 h (AUC(0-12)), C(0), C(12), maximum concentration of drug in serum (C(max)), or half-life (t(1/2)) between the baseline and double-dose LPV/r time points. Treatment was generally well tolerated, with two participants developing asymptomatic grade 3/4 transaminitis. Doubling the dose of the tablet formulation of LPV/r overcomes induction by rifampin. Less hepatotoxicity occurred in our cohort of HIV-infected participants than was reported in healthy-volunteer studies.

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