Thiazolides: a new class of antiviral drugs.

The Romark Institute for Medical Research, Tampa, Florida 33607, USA.
Expert Opinion on Drug Metabolism &amp Toxicology (Impact Factor: 2.94). 06/2009; 5(6):667-74. DOI: 10.1517/17425250902988487
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Thiazolides have emerged as a new class of broad-spectrum antiviral drugs, and the first thiazolide, nitazoxanide, is in late-stage clinical trials for treating chronic hepatitis C.
To review the chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology and efficacy of thiazolides as antiviral agents with emphasis on clinical development of nitazoxanide in treating chronic hepatitis C.
Literature search, information from Romark Laboratories and my personal experience with the discovery and development of thiazolides serve as the sources for this review.
Thiazolides are metabolically stable, highly bound to plasma proteins and are associated with a favorable toxicology profile. Phase II clinical trials have demonstrated efficacy and safety of nitazoxanide added to peginterferon with or without ribavirin in treating patients with chronic hepatitis C. More limited clinical data indicated potential in treating chronic hepatitis B, and three randomized controlled trials have demonstrated efficacy in reducing the duration of viral gastroenteritis. New generation thiazolides with the nitro group of nitazoxanide replaced by a non-reducible group are not active against anaerobes but retain broad-spectrum activity against viruses. Further studies are needed. Research indicates that these drugs may play an important and complementary role in combination with other classes of antiviral drugs.

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