Lopinavir/Ritonavir: a review of its use in the management of HIV-1 infection

Jamie D Croxtall, Caroline M Perry
Drugs 2010 October 1, 70 (14): 1885-915
Lopinavir/ritonavir (Kaletra®) is an orally administered coformulated ritonavir-boosted protease inhibitor (PI) comprising lopinavir and low-dose ritonavir. It is indicated, in combination with other antiretroviral agents, for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults, adolescents and children. Lopinavir/ritonavir is available as a tablet, soft-gel capsule and an oral solution for patients with difficulty swallowing. In well designed, randomized clinical trials, lopinavir/ritonavir, in combination with other antiretroviral therapies (ART), provided durable virological suppression and improved immunological outcomes in both ART-naive and -experienced adult patients with virological failure. Furthermore, lopinavir/ritonavir demonstrated a high barrier to the development of resistance in ART-naive patients. More limited data indicate that it is effective in reducing plasma HIV-1 RNA levels in paediatric patients. Lopinavir/ritonavir has served as a well established benchmark comparator for the noninferiority of other ritonavir-boosted PI regimens. Although generally well tolerated, lopinavir/ritonavir is associated with generally manageable adverse gastrointestinal side effects and hypertriglyceridaemia and hypercholesterolaemia, which may require coadministration of lipid-lowering agents to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. Lopinavir/ritonavir, in combination with other ART agents, is a well established and cost-effective treatment for both ART-naive and -experienced patients with HIV-1 infection and, with successful management of adverse events, continues to have a role as an effective component of ART regimens for the control of HIV-1 infection.

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