Pritelivir Safe, Effective for Genital HSV-2 Infection

Dose-dependent reduction seen in rate of genital HSV shedding and days with lesions

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Pritelivir is safe and effective for treatment of genital herpes simplex virus (HSV)-2 infection, according to a study published in the Jan. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Anna Wald, M.D., M.P.H., from the University of Washington in Seattle, and colleagues assessed the efficacy and safety of pritelivir in a cohort of 156 individuals with genital HSV-2 infection. Participants were randomized to receive oral pritelivir at doses of 5, 25, or 75 mg daily or 400 mg weekly or placebo for 28 days. Daily swabs were obtained from the genital area for HSV-2 testing, and a diary was maintained of genital signs and symptoms.

The researchers found that among placebo recipients, genital shedding was detected on 16.6 percent of days, compared with 18.2, 9.3, 2.1, and 5.3 percent of days for those receiving 5, 25, 75, and 400 mg pritelivir, respectively, with associated relative risks of 1.11, 0.57, 0.13, and 0.32, respectively. A significant reduction was seen in the percentage of days with genital lesions, from 9.0 percent in the placebo group to 1.2 percent in the groups receiving 75 mg daily and 400 mg weekly (relative risks, 0.13 for both). All groups had similar rates of adverse events.

"Pritelivir reduced the rates of genital HSV shedding and days with lesions in a dose-dependent manner in otherwise healthy men and women with genital herpes," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including AiCuris, which manufactures pritelivir and funded the study.

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