Abstract • Lysine has been claimed to be effective in the treatment and prevention of episodes of recurrent herpes simplex (HS) infection. We carried out a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of oral lysine hydrochloride therapy (400 mg, three times a day) in a group of 21 patients in good general health with a history of frequently recurring infection. Using our measures of episode frequency, duration, and severity, we were unable to detect any substantial benefit of lysine therapy either as a treatment for episodes in progress or as a prophylactic drug for the prevention of recurrences. We conclude that it is unlikely that lysine improves frequently recurrent HS infections in the majority of patients. (Arch Dermatol 1984;120:48-51) References 1. Kagan C: Lysine therapy for herpes simplex . Lancet 1974;1:137.Crossref 2. Griffith RS, Norins AL, Kagan C: A multicentered study of lysine therapy in herpes simplex infection . Dermatologica 1978; 156:257-267.Crossref 3. Milman N, Scheibel J, Jessen O: Failure of lysine treatment in recurrent herpes simplex labialis . Lancet 1978;2:942.Crossref 4. Milman N, Scheibel J, Jessen O: Lysine prophylaxis in recurrent herpes simplex labialis: A double-blind, controlled crossover study . Acta Derm Venereol 1980;60:85-87. 5. Kaplan AS, Shimano H, Ben-Porat T: Synthesis of proteins in cells infected with herpesvirus: III. Relative amino acid content of various proteins formed after infection . Virology 1970;40:90-101.Crossref 6. Spring S, Roiziman B, Spear PG: Selective failure of protein synthesis in herpesvirus-infected cells deprived of arginine . Virology 1969;38:710-712.Crossref 7. McCarthy CF, Borland JL, Lynch HJ, et al: Defective uptake of basic amino acids and L-cystine by intestinal mucosa of patients with cystinuria . J Clin Invest 1964;43:1518-1524.Crossref 8. Rosenberg LE, Downing S, Durant JL, et al: Cystinuria: Biochemical evidence for three genetically distinct diseases . J Clin Invest 1966;45:365-371.Crossref 9. Kamin H, Handler P: Effect of presence of other amino acids upon intestinal absorption of single amino acids in the rat . Am J Physiol 1952;169:305-308. 10. Peng Y, Gubin J, Harper AE, et al: Food intake regulation: Amino acid toxicity and changes in rat brain and plasma amino acids . J Nutr 1973;103:608-617.
Archives of Dermatology – American Medical Association
Published: Jan 1, 1984