Corticosteroids for dengue - why don't they work?
Nguyen THT., Nguyen THQ., Vu TT., Farrar J., Hoang TL., Dong THT., Ngoc Tran V., Phung KL., Wolbers M., Whitehead SS., Hibberd ML., Wills B., Simmons CP.
BACKGROUND: Dysregulated immune responses may contribute to the clinical complications that occur in some patients with dengue. FINDINGS: In Vietnamese pediatric dengue cases randomized to early prednisolone therapy, 81 gene-transcripts (0.2% of the 47,231 evaluated) were differentially abundant in whole-blood between high-dose (2 mg/kg) prednisolone and placebo-treated patients two days after commencing therapy. Prominent among the 81 transcripts were those associated with T and NK cell cytolytic functions. Additionally, prednisolone therapy was not associated with changes in plasma cytokine levels. CONCLUSION: The inability of prednisolone treatment to markedly attenuate the host immune response is instructive for planning future therapeutic strategies for dengue.