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Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 4, Issue 6, Pages 319-322

Ex Vivo Human Placental Transfer of Rifampin and Rifabutin

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Boulevard, Dallas 75235-9032, TX, USA

Received 15 September 1996; Accepted 14 January 1997

Copyright © 1996 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the ex vivo human placental transfer of rifampin and rifabutin.

Methods: Seven placentas from uncomplicated term vaginal or cesarean deliveries were studied utilizing the ex vivo single cotyledon perfusion system. Antipyrine was used for the reference compound in the determination of the clearance indices of rifampin and rifabutin.

Results: The clearance indices of rifampin at maternal concentrations of 1.0 and 10.0 μg/ml were 0.12 ± 0.05 and 0.12 ± 0.11, respectively. The clearance indices of rifabutin at maternal concentrations of 1.0 and 10.0 μg/ml were 0.44 ± 0.11 and 0.37 ± 0.15, respectively.

Conclusions: Because of its greater lipophilicity, rifabutin was found to have a greater clearance than rifampin. However, because of rifabutin's trend toward greater deposition in tissue, there was proportionately less accumulation of rifabutin in the fetal circulation when compared to rifampin.