Several of the antimalarial agents, including the 4-aminoquinolines, have been found effective in the clinical management of diseases other than the protozoan infections. Significant anti-inflammatory action of these agents has been reported in the treatment of diskoid and systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and certain photodermatoses.1 The purpose of this report is to present four cases of clinically severe forms of infectious mononucleosis which show a peculiar symptomatic response to the administration of chloroquine phosphate.
The mechanism of action of chloroquine (Aralen) phosphate, a 4-aminoquinoline, as both an antimalarial and an anti-inflammatory agent is poorly understood. The drug is rapidly and nearly completely absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract and is selectively bound in various body tissues. From 200 to 700 times the plasma concentration is found in liver, spleen, kidney, and lung. The skin and leukocytes also concentrate the drug or its degradation products heavily. Disappearance from the tissues