Leave it to Lefamulin: A Pleuromutilin Treatment Option in Community-Acquired Bacterial Pneumonia
Lefamulin (BC-3781) is the first systemic pleuromutilin antibiotic found to be safe and effective in the treatment of community-acquired bacterial pneumonia (CABP) in humans. This novel antibiotic was developed to combat the increasing incidence of bacterial resistance to current therapies. As the first semisynthetic pleuromutilin for systemic use in humans, lefamulin has demonstrated efficacy against the most common bacteria responsible for CABP, including strains exhibiting resistance to macrolides, fluoroquinolones, tetracyclines, vancomycin, and beta-lactams. In vitro studies have demonstrated efficacy against Staphylococcus aureus, beta-hemolytic and viridans group streptococci, coagulase-negative staphylococci, Enterococcus faecium, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, Mycoplasma pneumoniae, Chlamydophila pneumoniae, Legionella pneumophilia, and Moraxella catarrhalis at MIC values lower than those of currently available therapies. Two phase III trials (LEAP-1 and LEAP-2) have demonstrated similar findings, meeting non-inferiority criteria for CABP with a minimal side-effect profile. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic evaluations have shown sufficient drug levels in plasma, subcutaneous adipose tissue, skeletal muscle, and epithelial lining fluid, warranting further investigation for other clinical uses. Lefamulin was approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 19 August 2019 for the treatment of CABP.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
No funding was received for the preparation of this article.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
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