Non-Interferon Regimen Found Effective for Hepatitis C
(HealthDay News) – An interferon-free regimen of two or three drugs can effectively treat nearly all patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, including those who have failed treatment with protease inhibitors, according to a study published online Nov. 5 in The Lancet.
Eric Lawitz, MD, from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, and colleagues randomly assigned 100 adults infected with HCV (60 non-cirrhotic, treatment-naive patients and 40 patients with virological failure after protease inhibitor treatment, 55% of whom had cirrhosis) to sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir plus or minus ribavirin.
The researchers found that, of the treatment-naive patients, a sustained virological response 12 weeks after treatment was achieved in 95% of patients treated with sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir for eight weeks, 100% of patients treated with sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir plus ribavirin for eight weeks, and 95% of patients treated with sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir for 12 weeks. Of patients with previous virological failure, the same response was achieved in 95% of patients treated with sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir for 12 weeks and in 100% of patients treated with sofosbuvir plus ledipasvir plus ribavirin for 12 weeks.
"These findings suggest that the fixed-dose combination of sofosbuvir-ledipasvir alone or with ribavirin has the potential to cure most patients with genotype-1 HCV, irrespective of treatment history or the presence of compensated cirrhosis," Lawitz and colleagues conclude.
Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Gilead Sciences, which manufactures sofosbuvir and ledipasvir and funded the study.