Detection of CMV DNA by PCR is associated with hearing loss in newborns

Subject
Detection of cytomegalovirus (CMV) DNA by polymerase chain reaction is associated with hearing loss in newborns with symptomatic congenital CMV infection involving the central nervous system 


Authors
Bradford RD.  Cloud G.  Lakeman AD.  Boppana S.  Kimberlin DW.  Jacobs R.  Demmler G.  Sanchez P.  Britt W.  Soong SJ.  Whitley RJ.  National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Collaborative Antiviral Study Group 

Source
Journal of Infectious Diseases.  191(2):227-33, 2005 Jan 15

        

Abstract
OBJECTIVE: The study sought to determine the relationship between cytomegalovirus (CMV) viremia during early infancy and clinical and laboratory outcome events, particularly hearing loss in infants with symptomatic congenital CMV infection involving the central nervous system (CNS). STUDY DESIGN: A total of 147 infant patients were enrolled prospectively in 2 clinical trials evaluating ganciclovir for the treatment of symptomatic congenital CMV infection involving the CNS. Aliquots of serum collected at enrollment in either of the 2 trials were available from 50 of the infants, and the degree of viremia was determined by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS: Of the 50 infants from whom serum samples were available, 37 had detectable CMV DNA in the serum sample collected at enrollment and were classified as viremic. Viremic infants were more likely to have (1) hearing loss both at enrollment (P = .045) and at the 6-month follow-up testing (P = .035) and (2) other indicators of active CMV disease, including elevated levels of alanine aminotransferase, petechial rash, and organomegaly. CONCLUSION: In children with symptomatic congenital CMV infection involving the CNS, viremia during early infancy is associated with hearing loss and systemic CMV disease.

The safety and pharmacokinetics Civacir in liver transplant recipients

Subject
A randomized, open-label study to evaluate the safety and pharmacokinetics of human hepatitis C immune globulin (Civacir) in liver transplant recipients.


Authors
 
Davis GL, Nelson DR, Terrault N, Pruett TL, Schiano TD, Fletcher CV, Sapan CV, Riser LN, Li Y, Whitley RJ, Gnann JW Jr; Collaborative Antiviral Study Group.


Source
Liver Transplantation. 8:941-949, 2005 Aug;11


Abstract
 
Chronic hepatitis C is the most common indication for liver transplantation, but viral recurrence is universal and progressive graft injury occurs in most recipients. Our aim was to assess the safety, pharmacokinetics (PK), and antiviral effects of high doses of a human hepatitis C antibody enriched immune globulin product (HCIG) in patients undergoing liver transplantation for chronic hepatitis C. This was a multicenter, randomized, open-label, controlled trial conducted at 4 transplant centers in the United States. A total of 18 patients with chronic hepatitis C, who underwent liver transplantation, were randomized to receive low-dose HCIG (75 mg/kg) or high-dose HCIG (200 mg/kg), or no treatment. A total of 17 infusions of HCIG were administered in each treated patient over 14 weeks using a time-dependent dosing strategy based on the PK of anti-hepatitis B immune globulin in liver transplant recipients. Hepatitis C virus levels, liver enzymes, and liver biopsies were obtained serially throughout the study period. PK profiles of HCV antibodies were determined on days 4, 10, and 98. HCIG infusions were safe and tolerated. The infusion rate could not be maximized because of  symptoms for 18% to 30% of the doses. The half-life of HCIG was extremely short immediately after transplantation but was gradually prolonged. In the high-dose group, serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels normalized in most subjects and no patient developed hepatic fibrosis. However, serum HCV RNA levels were not suppressed at either dose. In conclusion, HCIG, an anti-HCV enriched immune globulin product, appears to be safe in patients with chronic hepatitis C undergoing liver transplantation. Further studies are required to determine whether the drug has beneficial effects in this group of patients.