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Monoclonal antibody
TypeWhole antibody
SourceHumanized (from mouse)
TargetRSV protein F
Clinical data
Trade namesSynagis
License data
  • C
Routes of
intramuscular injection
ATC code
Pharmacokinetic data
Elimination half-life18-20 days
CAS Number
  • none
Chemical and physical data
Molar mass145388.51 g·mol−1
 ☒N☑Y (what is this?)  (verify)

Palivizumab (brand name Synagis which is manufactured by MedImmune) is a monoclonal antibody produced by recombinant DNA technology. It is used in the prevention of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infections. It is recommended for infants that are high-risk because of prematurity or other medical problems such as congenital heart disease.

Palivizumab is a humanized monoclonal antibody (IgG) directed against an epitope in the A antigenic site of the F protein of RSV. In two phase III clinical trials in the pediatric population, palivizumab reduced the risk of hospitalization due to RSV infection by 55% and 45%. Palivizumab is dosed once a month via intramuscular (IM) injection, to be administered throughout the duration of the RSV season.[1]

Palivizumab targets the fusion protein of RSV,[2] inhibiting its entry into the cell and thereby preventing infection. Palivizumab was approved for medical use in 1998.[3]

Medical use[edit]

Palivizumab is used to reduce the risk of respiratory syncytial virus in children at increased risk of severe disease. The American Academy of Pediatrics has published guidelines for the use of palivizumab. The most recent updates to these recommendations are based on new information regarding RSV seasonality, palivizumab pharmacokinetics, the incidence of bronchiolitis hospitalizations, the effect of gestational age and other risk factors on RSV hospitalization rates, the mortality of children hospitalized with RSV infection, the effect of prophylaxis on wheezing, and palivizumab-resistant RSV isolates.[4]

All infants younger than one year who were born at <29 weeks (i.e. ≤28 weeks, 6 days) of gestation are recommended to use palivizumab. Infants younger than one year with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (i.e. who were born at <32 weeks gestation and required supplemental oxygen for the first 28 days after birth) and infants younger than two years with bronchopulmonary dysplasia who require medical therapy (e.g. supplemental oxygen, glucocorticoids, diuretics) within six months of the anticipated RSV season are recommended to use palivizumab as prophylaxis.[4]

Other potential target groups for palivizumab prophylaxis include:

Decisions regarding palivizumab prophylaxis for children in these groups should be made on a case-by-case basis.[4]

Side effects[edit]

Palivizumab use may cause side effects, which include, but are not limited to:[5]

Some more serious side effects include:


  1. ^ "Label - Palivizumab (Synagis), Medimmune, Incorporated" (PDF). Retrieved 2020-02-04.
  2. ^ Levinson W (2004). Medical Microbiology and Immunology (8th ed.). Lange. p. 430.
  3. ^ Long SS, Pickering LK, Prober CG (2012). Principles and Practice of Pediatric Infectious Disease. Elsevier Health Sciences. p. 1502. ISBN 978-1437727029.
  4. ^ a b c Brady MT, Byington CL, Davies HD, Edwards KM, Jackson MA, et al. (American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Infectious Diseases; American Academy of Pediatrics Bronchiolitis Guidelines Committee.) (August 2014). "Updated guidance for palivizumab prophylaxis among infants and young children at increased risk of hospitalization for respiratory syncytial virus infection". Pediatrics. 134 (2): 415–20. doi:10.1542/peds.2014-1665. PMID 25070315.
  5. ^ "Palivizumab Injection". MedlinePlus Drug Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Retrieved 2016-01-30.