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Int J Immunopharmacol. 1995 Feb;17(2):117-31.

Immunopharmacological activities and clinical development of muramyl peptides with particular emphasis on murabutide.

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Sandoz Forschungsinstitut, Vienna, Austria.


Certain immunopharmacological activities of muramyl peptides have been associated with inflammatory and undesirable side-effects typically observed following the administration of the prototype molecule muramyl dipeptide. This activity is now demonstrated not to be linked to a direct activation of inflammatory processes in endothelial cells. Neither MDP nor other structural derivatives were able to induce inflammatory cytokines release or E-selectin gene expression in cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells. However, oral administration of muramyl peptides has been reported to induce certain biological effects, including the downregulation of anamnestic, antigen-specific IgE responses, which are not observed following parenteral administration. We elaborate on these findings and extend them to show the efficacy of a new muramyl peptide in suppressing polyclonally induced serum IgE levels in anti-IgD-treated mice. The comparative effects of muramyl peptides, selected for clinical development, on the induction of cytokines in human whole blood are then presented at the level of mRNA accumulation and protein secretion. Moreover, the cytokine profile induced in vitro and in vivo by the combination of the safe immunostimulant, Murabutide, with interferon-alpha is examined. This combination reveals a selective and beneficial synergistic activity and induces anti-inflammatory cytokines in the absence of synergistic toxicity. The potential and the implications for the use of a therapeutic combination of an immunostimulant with a cytokine are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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