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Review: Embryotoxicity of the artemisinin antimalarials and potential consequences for use in women in the first trimester

October 25, 2009 - 16:56 -- Bart G.J. Knols
Author(s): 
Robert L. Clark
Reference: 
Reproductive Toxicology, Volume 28, Issue 3, November 2009, Pages 285-296, doi:10.1016/j.reprotox.2009.05.002

Single oral doses of artesunate, dihydroartemisinin, arteether and artemether administered to rats during a sensitive period of organogenesis caused embryo deaths and malformations (malformed long bones and ventricular septal defects). Extended oral dosing (12 days or more) of monkeys once daily with 12 mg/kg-d artesunate also caused embryo deaths. The initial embryotoxic effect in both species was to kill primitive erythroblasts which are present in the embryo for a few days of gestation in rats and several weeks in primates.

 

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