Acute Crit Care.  2021 May;36(2):85-91. 10.4266/acc.2021.00150.

Up-to-date information on polymyxin B-immobilized fiber column direct hemoperfusion for septic shock

  • 1Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Juntendo University Faculty of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan
  • 2Department of Internal Medicine and Rheumatology, Juntendo University Faculty of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan


Endotoxin adsorption therapy by polymyxin B-immobilized fiber column direct hemoperfusion (PMX-DHP) has been used for the treatment of septic shock patients. Endotoxin, an outer membrane component of Gram-negative bacteria, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of septic shock. Endotoxin triggers a signaling cascade for leukocytes, macrophage, and endothelial cells to secrete various mediators including cytokines and nitric oxide, leading to septic shock and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome. PMX-DHP directly adsorbed not only endotoxin but also monocytes and anandamide. It reduced blood levels of inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin (IL)-1, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor-alpha and IL-17A, adhesion molecules, plasminogen activator inhibitor 1, and high mobility group box-1. As a result, PMX-DHP increased blood pressure and reduced the dose of vasoactive-inotropic agents. PMX-DHP improved monocyte human leukocyte antigen-DR expression in patients with severe sepsis and septic shock. A post hoc analysis of EUPHRATES (Evaluating the Use of Polymyxin B Hemoperfusion in Randomized Controlled Trial of Adults Treated for Endotoxemia and Septic Shock) trial has shown that PMX-DHP significantly reduced 28-day mortality compared with the control group in septic shock patients with endotoxin activity assay level between 0.60 and 0.89. Longer duration of PMX-DHP may be another strategy to bring out the beneficial effects of PMX-DHP. Further studies are needed to confirm the efficacy of PMX-DHP treatment for septic shock.


duration of therapy; endotoxin; hemoperfusion; polymyxin B; sepsis; septic shock
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