Which medications in the drug class Mucolytic Agents are used in the treatment of Cystic Fibrosis?

Updated: Oct 22, 2019
  • Author: Girish D Sharma, MD, FCCP, FAAP; Chief Editor: Kenan Haver, MD  more...
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Answer

Mucolytic Agents

Large amounts of neutrophil-derived DNA released from dead neutrophils increase sputum viscosity. Mucolytics, such as dornase alfa, an enzyme that hydrolyses the DNA, are used in patients with CF to improve airway clearance.

The Pulmonary Therapies Committee of Cystic Fibrosis Foundation recommends long-term use of hypertonic saline for patients with cystic fibrosis aged 6 years or older to improve lung function and to reduce the number of exacerbations. [64]

Dornase alfa (Pulmozyme)

Dornase alfa is a recombinant human DNase (rhDNase) that cleaves and depolymerizes extracellular DNA and separates DNA from proteins. This allows endogenous proteolytic enzymes to break down the proteins, thus decreasing viscoelasticity and surface tension of purulent sputum.


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