Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

<jats:p>Dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine is a recommended first-line artemisinin combination therapy for <jats:italic>falciparum</jats:italic> malaria. Piperaquine is also under consideration for other antimalarial combination therapies. The aim of this study was to develop a pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic model that could be used to optimize the use of piperaquine in new antimalarial combination therapies. The pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic model was developed using data from a previously reported dose-ranging study where 24 healthy volunteers were inoculated 1,800 blood-stage <jats:italic>Plasmodium falciparum</jats:italic> parasites. All volunteers received a single oral dose of piperaquine (960 mg, 640 mg, or 480 mg) on day 7 or day 8 after parasite inoculation in separate cohorts. Parasite densities were measured by qPCR, and piperaquine levels were measured in plasma samples. We used nonlinear mixed-effect modelling to characterize the pharmacokinetic properties of piperaquine and the parasite dynamics associated with piperaquine exposure. Pharmacokinetics of piperaquine was described by a three-compartment disposition model. A semi-mechanistic parasite dynamics model was developed to explain maturation of parasites, sequestration of mature parasites, synchronicity of infections, and multiplication of parasites, as seen in natural clinical infections with <jats:italic>falciparum</jats:italic> malaria. Piperaquine-associated parasite killing was estimated using a maximum effect (E<jats:sub>max</jats:sub>) function. Treatment simulations (i.e. 3-day oral dosing of dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine) indicated that to be able to combat multidrug resistant infections, an ideal additional drug in a new antimalarial triple-combination therapy should have a parasite reduction ratio of ≥10<jats:sup>2</jats:sup> per life cycle (38.8 h) with a duration of action of ≥ 2 weeks. The semi-mechanistic pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic model described here offers the potential to be a valuable tool to assess and optimize current and new antimalarial drug combinations therapies containing piperaquine, and the impact of these therapies on killing multidrug resistant infections.</jats:p>

Original publication

DOI

10.1128/aac.01583-20

Type

Journal

Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy

Publisher

American Society for Microbiology

Publication Date

19/01/2021