The role of lipid and the benefit of statin in augmenting rifampicin effectivity for a better leprosy treatment

Muhammad Habiburrahman, Haekal Ariq, Shannaz Nadia Yusharyahya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Although leprosy remains as a serious disease of the skin and nervous system, the current treatment is still lacking in its effectiveness. AIM: This literature review will explore the association of lipid and leprosy, as well as the potential of statin and other lipid-lowering agents as adjunctive drugs to combat leprosy. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Articles were searched through the PubMed, EBSCOhost, and Google Scholar with the keywords: immunomodulation, lipid-body, lipids, leprosy, Mycobacterium leprae, pathogenesis, rifampin or rifampicin, and statins. A manual searching is also carried out to find an additional relevant information to make this literature review more comprehensive. RESULTS: The literatures showed that lipids are highly correlated with leprosy through alterations in serum lipid profile, metabolism, pathogenesis, and producing oxidative stress. Statins can diminish lipid utilization in the pathogenesis of leprosy and show a mycobactericidal effect by increasing the effectiveness of rifampicin and recover the function of macrophages. In addition, Statins have anti-inflammatory properties which may aid in preventing type I and II reactions in leprosy. Standard multidrug therapy might reduce the efficacy of statins, but the effect is not clinically significant. The statin dose-response curve also allows therapeutic response to be achieved with minimal dose. CONCLUSION: The various pleiotropic effects of statins make it a potential adjunct to standard treatment for leprosy in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)246-259
Number of pages14
JournalOpen Access Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences
Issue numberF
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Bactericidal
  • Leprosy
  • Lipids
  • Rifampicin
  • Statins


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