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AIDS. 1994 Dec;8(12):1683-9.

Pharmacokinetic variability of zidovudine in HIV-infected individuals: subgroup analysis and drug interactions.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacy, Slotervaart Hospital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



To investigate determinants of inter- and intraindividual variability of zidovudine (ZDV) pharmacokinetics in HIV-infected patients.


A prospective study in a general 525-bed hospital with special funding for treatment and research of HIV-infected patients.


Serial blood samples were collected from 68 HIV-infected individuals providing a total of 95 pharmacokinetic curves. ZDV was measured with high-performance liquid chromatography and radioimmunoassay. Pharmacokinetic parameters were calculated by non-compartmental analysis. Patient characteristics were investigated by multivariate analysis for an influence on ZDV pharmacokinetics.


Apparent ZDV clearance was significantly lower in patients with a lower body weight, in women, and in patients with a more advanced stage of HIV disease. Co-administration of methadone with ZDV resulted in higher plasma concentrations of ZDV, while rifampin and ganciclovir increased apparent ZDV clearance. Age, the duration of ZDV use, CD4+ cell count, creatinine clearance, elevated serum liver enzyme levels, and the use of 11 other co-administered medications were not independently related to apparent ZDV clearance.


The pharmacokinetic profile of ZDV in several subpopulations has been evaluated, as well as the observation of possible drug-drug interactions between ZDV and 14 different drugs or groups of drugs. These data suggest that patient-individualized antiretroviral therapy may be appropriate once pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic relationships have been established.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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