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Myocarditis is a common inflammatory heart disease in children and young adults that may result in chronically dilated cardiomyopathy. Coxsackievirus B3 is the major etiologic agent of this disease. Current treatments for patients with viral myocarditis are almost entirely supportive. In recent years, some promising therapeutic candidates have emerged, including novel treatments and improvements of existing drugs. Among these are molecules that specially target virus entry, such as pleconaril, WIN 54954 and CAR-Fc; nucleic acid-based antiviral agents that inhibit viral translation and/or transcription, such as antisense oligodeoxynucleotide and short interfering RNA; and immunomodulatory agents that augment the host-protective immune responses to effectively clear viruses from target tissues, including interferons and immunoglobulins. In addition, certain new antiviral strategies, still in the early stages, include modulation of signal transduction pathways responsible for viral replication using enzyme inhibitors, which have revealed potential therapeutic targets for viral myocarditis. Finally, the progress in cellular cardiomyoplasty for end-stage therapy, in particular the preliminary clinical trials, is also discussed with respect to its potential future application.


Zhen Liu, Ji Yuan, Bobby Yanagawa, Dexin Qiu, Bruce M McManus, Decheng Yang. Coxsackievirus-induced myocarditis: new trends in treatment. Expert review of anti-infective therapy. 2005 Aug;3(4):641-50

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PMID: 16107202

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