, Volume 28, Issue 7, pp 835-840
Date: 25 Mar 2009

The effectiveness and safety of mycophenolate mofetil in lupus nephritis

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The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) for inducing and/or maintaining remission of lupus nephritis (LN). This is a retrospective study of 25 LN patients consecutively treated with MMF. The primary outcome was complete renal remission (CR) defined by urine protein/creatinine ratio ≤0.5 g/g and inactive urine sediment and serum creatinine within <15% above baseline. For induction, 21 episodes of active, moderate to severe LN were treated with MMF. Twelve cases (57%) achieved CR over a median of 8.5 months. Of 13 patients who had LN for <12 months and took ≥2 g/day of MMF, 11 achieved CR, compared to one out of the eight patients who did not meet both criteria (p = 0.0022). For maintenance therapy, 15 patients received MMF for a median of 20 months (range 5–55 months). Two patients (13%) experienced renal flares while taking MMF. Most adverse events were transient and did not require change in therapy. This study suggests that MMF is an effective treatment for both induction and maintenance of remission of moderate to severe LN with a relatively favorable safety profile. Early treatment and a dose ≥2 g/day are essential for optimal outcome. CR may take >6 months.