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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2002 Sep 1;31(1):45-9.

The addition of mycophenolate mofetil to antiretroviral therapy including abacavir is associated with depletion of intracellular deoxyguanosine triphosphate and a decrease in plasma HIV-1 RNA.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, North Texas Veterans Health Care Systems, Dallas, USA.


Mycophenolic acid (MPA) enhances the in vitro activity of abacavir (ABC) and other nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs) against sensitive and NRTI-resistant HIV-1. This may occur via depletion of intracellular deoxyguanosine triphosphate (dGTP). Mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) 500 mg twice daily was added as a single agent to the antiretroviral regimens of five patients failing maximal available therapy. Therapy included ABC, and in most cases didanosine (DDI) and tenofovir (TDF). At entry, mean plasma HIV-1 RNA (VL) was 5.02 log copies/mL (median 4.78, range 4.71-5.63) and mean CD4 count was 106/microL (median 117, range 11-174). MMF was well tolerated. CD4 cell counts did not change significantly from baseline for up to 60 weeks of follow-up. Three of five subjects had VL declines of >0.5 log copies/mL immediately after adding MMF; a fourth subject had a sustained decline of >0.5 log copies/mL after week 8. Declines of >0.5 log copies/mL were lost in two patients at 6 and 8 weeks, and persisted in two patients at 36 and 60 weeks of follow-up, respectively. An increase in the ratio of carbovir triphosphate (CBV-TP), the active antiviral metabolite of ABC, to dGTP was documented in 3 of 4 subjects in temporal association with decreased VL. Trough plasma MPA levels ranged from 0.26-1.67 microg/mL; peak levels 90 minutes after dosing from 1.20-7.77 microg/mL. AUC of MPA appeared little changed when measured over 28 weeks of therapy. Declines in VL were observed in association with measurable changes in the CBV-TP/dGTP ratio in some patients, whereas MPA AUC was below the 30-60 microg*hr/mL range targeted in organ transplantation. The possibility that MMF may enhance the effect of selected NRTIs and be tolerated in late stage HIV disease deserves careful randomized study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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