The rise in Plasmodium falciparum resistance to dihydroartemisinin-piperaquine in Vietnam justifies the need to evaluate alternative artemisinin-based combination therapies. Between July 2018 and October 2019, a single-arm trial of pyronaridine-artesunate (Pyramax, PA) was conducted in Dak Nong province, Vietnam. PA (3-day course) was administered to adults and children infected with P. falciparum. PA was well tolerated by the participants. The proportion of patients with Day 42 PCR-corrected adequate clinical and parasitological response was 95.2% (95% confidence interval [CI], 82.3 to 98.8, n = 40/42) for treating falciparum malaria.
In Phase II/III randomized controlled clinical trials for the treatment of acute uncomplicated malaria, pyronaridine–artesunate demonstrated high efficacy and a safety profile consistent with that of comparators, except that asymptomatic, mainly mild-to-moderate transient increases in liver aminotransferases were reported for some patients. Hepatic safety, tolerability, and effectiveness have not been previously assessed under real-world conditions in Africa.
Pyronaridine-artesunate (PA) is a registered artemisinin-based combination therapy, potentially useful for mass drug administration campaigns. However, further data are needed to evaluate its efficacy, safety and tolerability as full or incomplete treatment in asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum-infected individuals.
Four single-arm, prospective, clinical studies of pyronaridine–artesunate efficacy in uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum or Plasmodium vivax malaria were conducted in Myanmar between 2017 and 2019. Eligible subjects were aged at least 6 years, with microscopically confirmed P. falciparum (n = 196) or P. vivax mono-infection (n = 206). Patients received pyronaridine–artesunate once daily for 3 days with follow-up until day 42 for P. falciparum or day 28 for P. vivax.
Multidrug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum undermines the efficacy of currently deployed antimalarial therapies in southern Viet Nam.
Artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) are the recommended first-line antimalarials for uncomplicated malaria and comprise a short-acting artemisinin-based component for rapid reduction of Plasmodium parasite burden partnered with a longer-acting drug to eliminate surviving parasites.