Study Objective: To assess the efficacy of Anaferon for children, a Russian preparation of anti-interferon gamma antibodies, in preventing and treating repeated acute respiratory viral infections (ARVI) in children with asthma.
Study Design: This was a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical study. Materials and Methods: Children, aged 1 to 5, with mild or moderate-to-severe asthma were randomized into the main group (n = 100) or the control group (n = 100). In the main group, children received a standard preventive regimen of Anaferon for children for 3 months and were temporally switched to a standard therapeutic regimen in case of ARVI. In the control group, subjects received the same regimens of placebo. In both groups, pathogenesis-based and symptomatic treatment was additionally used in case of ARVI.
Results: In the main group, 40 children had ARVI and 20 of them had these infections twice (60 ARVI events in total). In the control group, 76 children had ARVI, while 36 had had two events and 10 had had three events (132 ARVI events in total). The mean duration of the first and second ARVI episodes was 5.7 ± 0.4 and 5.2 ± 0.5 days in the main group and 9.4 ± 0.6 and 9.1 ± 0.8 days in the control group. Asthma exacerbations were reported in 20% and 64% of children in the main and control groups, respectively (p < 0.001).
Conclusion: The study showed that, compared to a placebo, preventive and therapeutic treatment with Anaferon for children in patients with asthma reduced the rates of ARVI, including the rates of repeated episodes, and the duration of ARVI episodes. Such treatment also contributed to a reduction in the frequency and duration of virus-induced asthma exacerbations in these patients and, therefore, improved asthma control.