Send to

Choose Destination
J Pediatr. 1990 Nov;117(5):823-6.

Interaction between trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole and methotrexate in children with leukemia.

Author information

Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Because trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX) causes neutropenia in children with leukemia, we investigated the possibility that pharmacokinetic interaction between methotrexate (MTX) and TMP-SMX causes accumulation of the antileukemia agent. We studied the pharmacokinetics of MTX given intravenously or orally to nine children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, once with and once without TMP-SMX. There was an increase in free MTX fraction during TMP-SMX therapy in all patients, from (mean +/- SD) 37.4 +/- 11% without TMP-SMX to 52.2 +/- 6.4% with TMP-SMX (p less than 0.01). Plasma clearance of total MTX did not change significantly, whereas clearance of free MTX decreased significantly (from 12.5 +/- 4 to 7.6 +/- 1.5 ml/kg/min; p less than 0.05). There was a consistent decrease in the renal clearance of free MTX (from 12.1 +/- 6.8 to 5.6 +/- 2.4 ml/kg/min; p less than 0.05). Elimination half-life of MTX was not affected significantly by TMP-SMX. There was a significant correlation between serum concentrations of TMP-SMX and the percentage of decrease in the renal clearance of free MTX (r = 0.91; p less than 0.05). These changes in protein binding and tubular clearance of MTX, caused by competition with TMP-SMX, result in a mean 66% increase in systemic exposure to MTX and may explain the myelotoxicity often observed with the coadministration of the two drugs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center