[Respiratory syncytial virus]

Hiroyuki Tsutsumi
Uirusu 2005, 55 (1): 77-84
Human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most common worldwide cause of lower respiratory tract infections (LRI) in infants less than 6 months of age. The prophylaxis against RSV infection by vaccination has been unsuccessful because of its adverse effects. As antiviral drug, ribavirin spray (aerosol) had been used clinically and reduces the amount of virus load, without reducing the necessity of symptomatic therapy and the duration of hospitalization. Therefore RSV LRI has been treated mainly symptomatically. Recently humanized anti-RSV F protein monoclonal antibody was developed and prescribed for prevention in high-risk infants such as premature ones and those with chronic lung and congenital heart diseases. It reduced the incidence of hospitalization significantly. It has been introduced in clinical use in Japan following to Western countries. On the other hand, a number of anti-RSV drugs have now been investigation; however, no valuable drugs for clinical use have been yet developed.

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