New hepatitis C drug shows potential in phase 2 trials

October 10, 2013

The addition of danoprevir to the current treatment regimen for patients with hepatitis C leads to high rates of remission, according to a new article in Gastroenterology, the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association. The current standard of care for hepatitis C patients includes a combination of peginterferon and ribavirin.

"Despite recent advances, the current hepatitis C is burdensome on the patient and prone to adverse events," said Patrick Marcellin, lead study author from the Service d'Hépatologie and Inserm CRB3, Hôpital Beaujon, APHP University of Paris. "The promising results from this study offer hope that danoprevir can improve the quality of life for patients suffering from this disease."

Investigators conducted a phase 2, randomized, placebo-controlled study and found that, within just one week of treatment, the addition of danoprevir to the current treatment regimen (peginterferon alfa-2a/ribavirin) led to reductions in levels of hepatitis C virus in the blood. Overall, danoprevir was well tolerated and demonstrated an 85 percent sustained rate (or no detectable virus in the patient's blood after six months).

Importantly, 79 percent of patients who added danoprevir to their treatment regimen achieved an early virologic response and were eligible for a shortened treatment schedule.

Studies of lower doses of danoprevir on top of the current standard of care, to reduce overall danoprevir exposure while maintaining the drug's effectiveness, are underway. Interim effectiveness and safety data are promising.

Hepatitis C is a serious liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus, which is spread through direct contact with the blood of infected people and ultimately affects the liver. Chronic hepatitis C can lead to serious and life-threatening liver problems, including liver damage, cirrhosis, liver failure or cancer. Though many people with hepatitis C may not experience symptoms, others may have symptoms such as fatigue, fever, jaundice and abdominal pain. For more information on , please read the AGA brochure "Understanding Hepatitis."

Explore further: Drug cocktail offers new hope for hepatitis C patients

Related Stories

US approves second new hepatitis C drug

May 23, 2011

The US Food and Drug Administration on Monday approved Incivek to treat hepatitis C when taken along with the current two-drug regimen, marking the second such drug approval this month.

Coffee drinking improves hepatitis C treatment response

June 7, 2011

Advanced hepatitis C patients with chronic liver disease may benefit from drinking coffee during treatment, according to a new study in Gastroenterology, the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association ...

Sofosbuvir shows promise for chronic hepatitis C infection

April 23, 2013

(HealthDay)—Sofosbuvir seems to be a promising treatment option for patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, according to two studies published online April 23 in the New England Journal of Medicine to coincide ...

Hepatitis C screening for baby boomers

April 29, 2013

If you were born during 1945-1965, talk to your doctor about getting tested for hepatitis C. The word "hepatitis" means swelling of the liver. Hepatitis is most often caused by a virus. In the United States, the most common ...

Recommended for you

Immune breakthrough: Unscratching poison ivy's rash

August 23, 2016

We all know that a brush with poison ivy leaves us with an itchy painful rash. Now, Monash University and Harvard researchers have discovered the molecular cause of this irritation. The finding brings us a step closer to ...

Zika infection may affect adult brain cells

August 18, 2016

Concerns over the Zika virus have focused on pregnant women due to mounting evidence that it causes brain abnormalities in developing fetuses. However, new research in mice from scientists at The Rockefeller University and ...

Monkeys with Sudan ebolavirus treated successfully

August 22, 2016

Scientists funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have successfully treated monkeys several days after the animals were infected with Sudan ebolavirus (SUDV). The study is important, according to the researchers, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.