Medications

Drug may boost vaccine responses in older adults

A drug that boosts the removal of cellular debris in immune cells may increase the protective effects of vaccines in older adults, a study published today in eLife shows.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Cirrhosis cases rising among women in North America

(HealthDay)—Cirrhosis disease burden in women has increased substantially since 2000, according to a study presented at The Liver Meeting, the annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, ...

Health

Sexual health status of Australia's young Indigenous revealed

The results are in for the latest Australia-wide sexual health survey of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The GOANNA Survey was led by SAHMRI researchers in partnership with Aboriginal community organizations ...

Medications

Glecaprevir and pibrentasvir aid HCV-positive kidney transplants

(HealthDay)—By treating or preventing infection, glecaprevir and pibrentasvir (G/P) regimens are promising for increasing access to the transplantation of kidneys from hepatitis C virus (HCV)-positive donors to HCV-negative ...

HIV & AIDS

Updated guidance for healthcare workers with HIV, hepatitis

In light of the low rate of transmission and advances in treatments for hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and HIV, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America today released updated guidance for healthcare personnel living ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Hepatitis C: silent killer

A trio of researchers were awarded the Nobel Medicine Prize on Monday for their discovery of the Hepatitis C virus, paving the way for blood tests and new treatments.

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Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is an infectious disease affecting the liver, caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). The infection is often asymptomatic, but once established, chronic infection can progress to scarring of the liver (fibrosis), and advanced scarring (cirrhosis) which is generally apparent after many years. In some cases, those with cirrhosis will go on to develop liver failure or other complications of cirrhosis, including liver cancer.

The hepatitis C virus (HCV) is spread by blood-to-blood contact. Most people have few, if any symptoms after the initial infection, yet the virus persists in the liver in about 85% of those infected. Persistent infection can be treated with medication, peginterferon and ribavirin being the standard-of-care therapy. Only 51% are cured overall. Those who develop cirrhosis or liver cancer may require a liver transplant, and the virus universally recurs after transplantation.

An estimated 270-300 million people worldwide are infected with hepatitis C. Hepatitis C is a strictly human disease. It cannot be contracted from or given to any animal. Chimpanzees can be infected with the virus in the laboratory, but do not develop the disease, which has made research more difficult. No vaccine against hepatitis C is available. The existence of hepatitis C (originally "non-A non-B hepatitis") was postulated in the 1970s and proved conclusively in 1989. It is one of five known hepatitis viruses: A, B, C, D, and E.

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