Author(s): Takei T, Nitta K
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Abstract Minimal change nephrotic syndrome (MCNS) usually responds to steroids but frequently relapses, requiring additional treatment with immunosuppressive agents. Rituximab is a chimeric murine/human monoclonal immunoglobulin G1 antibody that targets CD20, a B-cell differentiation marker. B-cell recovery begins at approximately 6 months following the completion of treatment. Rituximab has a beneficial effect, with the sustained remission or reduction of proteinuria in patients with steroid-dependent MCNS. Relapses are thought to be associated with an increase in CD19 cells. The mean serum half-life of rituximab was reported to be 10-15 days in patients with steroid-dependent nephrotic syndrome. Only infusion reactions, such as rash and chills, occurred after single-dose rituximab infusion and can be managed by pre-medication or infusion rate adjustments. Even though severe adverse effects of rituximab are not expected, physicians must be aware of potentially life-threatening adverse effects. Controlled randomized trials that include adult patients with steroid-dependent or steroid-resistant MCNS are required to prove the efficacy and safety of rituximab and to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of rituximab treatment.
This article was published in Clin Exp Nephrol
and referenced in Journal of Nephrology & Therapeutics