Care of Patients Following Cure of Hepatitis C Virus Infection

  Abstract: The vast majority of persons with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection will achieve virologic cure with the current direct-acting antiviral therapies. Prevention of […]

Management of Patients Who Have Achieved Sustained Virologic Response for Hepatitis C Virus Infection

  G&H  How often is sustained virologic response achieved with the current hepatitis C virus treatment options? PP  There are multiple direct-acting antiviral (DAA) regimens currently […]

IL-28B As a Predictor of Sustained Virologic Response in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C Virus Infection

Abstract: Genome-wide association studies have recently identified single nucleotide polymorphisms in proximity to the interleukin-28B (IL-28B) gene that can predict sustained virologic response (SVR) in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection who are undergoing therapy with pegylated interferon (IFN) α and ribavirin. IL-28B encodes IFN-λ3, a type III IFN involved in host antiviral immunity. Favorable variants of the 2 most widely studied IL-28B polymorphisms, rs12979860 and rs8099917, are strong pretreatment predictors of early viral clearance and SVR in patients with genotype 1 HCV infection. Variations in the distribution of IL-28B alleles may partly explain differences in SVR rates among ethnic groups. Further investigations have implicated IL-28B in the development of chronic HCV infection versus spontaneous resolution of acute infection and suggest that IL-28B may be a key factor involved in host immunity against HCV. Clinical trials of IFN-λ as a therapeutic agent for chronic HCV infection are currently underway. The use of IL-28B polymorphisms as a predictive tool will have a major impact on treatment strategies for chronic HCV infection, particularly in the context of emerging therapies and direct-acting antiviral agents.

Direct-Acting Antiviral Medications for Chronic Hepatitis C Virus Infection

Abstract: Treatment of hepatitis C virus has traditionally been difficult because of low rates of treatment success and high rates of treatment discontinuation due to side effects. Current standard therapy consists of pegylated interferon α and ribavirin, both of which have nonspecific and largely unknown mechanisms of action. New therapies are in development that act directly on the hepatitis C virus at various points in the viral life cycle. Published clinical trial data on these therapies are summarized in this paper. A new era of hepatitis C virus treatment is beginning, the ultimate goals of which will be directly targeting the virus, shortening the length of therapy, improving sustained virologic response rates, and minimizing side effects.

Millennium Medical Publishing, Inc