Formulation, Pharmacological Evaluation, and Efficacy Studies of Occidiofungin, a Novel Antifungal.
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Occidiofungin is a nonribosomally synthesized cyclic lipopeptide that possesses broad-spectrum antifungal properties at submicromolar concentrations. This report explores multiple routes of administration and formulations of occidiofungin, as well as its toxicity in mice. Further, infection studies were performed in mice to assess the application of occidiofungin for treating systemic and intravaginal yeast infections. Formulations for intravenous and intravaginal administration of occidiofungin were prepared. Pharmacokinetic analyses were performed in a murine model, and a liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) method was developed and used to quantify occidiofungin in mouse plasma samples. Toxicological and histopathological analyses of two repeat-dose studies using occidiofungin were performed. In these animal models, following intravenous administration, a liposomal formulation of occidiofungin improved the half-life and peak plasma drug concentration over that with a liposome-free formulation. Two long-term repeat-dosing toxicity studies of occidiofungin indicated the absence of toxicity in organ tissues. Murine models of a systemic yeast infection and a vulvovaginal yeast infection were performed. The findings of the systemic infection study revealed limitations in the use of occidiofungin that may be alleviated with the development of novel structural analogs or with further formulation studies. The gel formulation of occidiofungin demonstrated improved efficacy over that of the commercial product Monistat 3 in a vulvovaginal candidiasis study. This report outlines the optimal routes of administration of occidiofungin and demonstrates minimal toxicity following chronic exposure. Further, the results of these studies provide a clear indication for the use of occidiofungin for the treatment of recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis (RVVC), which is a serious and clinically relevant issue.