Next Article in Journal
Modulation of the Tumor Microenvironment by CXCR4 Antagonist-Armed Viral Oncotherapy Enhances the Antitumor Efficacy of Dendritic Cell Vaccines against Neuroblastoma in Syngeneic Mice
Next Article in Special Issue
The Pandemic Threat of Emerging H5 and H7 Avian Influenza Viruses
Previous Article in Journal
Host-Directed Antivirals: A Realistic Alternative to Fight Zika Virus
Previous Article in Special Issue
Influenza Virus Infection of Human Lymphocytes Occurs in the Immune Cell Cluster of the Developing Antiviral Response
Article Menu
Issue 9 (September) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Viruses 2018, 10(9), 454;

Neuraminidase Inhibitors in Influenza Treatment and Prevention–Is It Time to Call It a Day?

Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies, 60438 Frankfurt am Main, Hessen, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors shared the first author position.
Received: 16 July 2018 / Revised: 15 August 2018 / Accepted: 22 August 2018 / Published: 25 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue What’s New with Flu?)
PDF [2670 KB, uploaded 25 August 2018]


Stockpiling neuraminidase inhibitors (NAIs) such as oseltamivir and zanamivir is part of a global effort to be prepared for an influenza pandemic. However, the contribution of NAIs for the treatment and prevention of influenza and its complications is largely debatable due to constraints in the ability to control for confounders and to explore unobserved areas of the drug effects. For this study, we used a mathematical model of influenza infection which allowed transparent analyses. The model recreated the oseltamivir effects and indicated that: (i) the efficacy was limited by design, (ii) a 99% efficacy could be achieved by using high drug doses (however, taking high doses of drug 48 h post-infection could only yield a maximum of 1.6-day reduction in the time to symptom alleviation), and (iii) contributions of oseltamivir to epidemic control could be high, but were observed only in fragile settings. In a typical influenza infection, NAIs’ efficacy is inherently not high, and even if their efficacy is improved, the effect can be negligible in practice. View Full-Text
Keywords: oseltamivir; neuraminidase inhibitor; influenza; mathematical modeling; epidemics oseltamivir; neuraminidase inhibitor; influenza; mathematical modeling; epidemics

Figure 1

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 (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Parra-Rojas, C.; Nguyen, V.K.; Hernandez-Mejia, G.; Hernandez-Vargas, E.A. Neuraminidase Inhibitors in Influenza Treatment and Prevention–Is It Time to Call It a Day? Viruses 2018, 10, 454.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Viruses EISSN 1999-4915 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top