Safety and efficacy of treatment with pegylated interferon alpha-2a with ribavirin in chronic hepatitis C genotype 4.
ABSTRACT The hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype is an important predictive outcome parameter for pegylated interferon plus ribavirin therapy. Most published therapeutic trials to date have enrolled mainly patients with HCV genotypes 1, 2 and 3. Limited studies have focused on genotype 4 patients, who have had a poor representation in pivotal trials. Our aim was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of treatment with standard dose pegylated interferon alfa-2a in combination with weight-based ribavirin in patients with chronic hepatitis C genotype 4. In this prospective observational study, 198 patients with HCV-4 were included in this study from February 2004 to August 2005,188 patients who received at least 1 dose of drugs were included in the ITT analysis and they were treated with pegylated interferon alfa-2a and ribavirin for 48 weeks. Baseline and demographic characteristics, response to treatment at weeks 12, 48 and 72, and the nature and frequency of adverse effects were analyzed. Virological response at week 12 was achieved in 144 patients (76.6%). Virological response at the end of treatment was present in 110 patients (58.5%). At week 72, 99 patients presented SVR (52.7%). The reported adverse events were similar to those found in the literature for treatments of similar dose and duration. In conclusion, combined treatment with pegylated interferon alfa-2a and ribavirin was well tolerated and effective in chronic hepatitis C genotype 4, yielding response rates between those reported for genotype 1 and those of genotypes 2-3.
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ABSTRACT: Pending the emergence and approval of an effective interferon-free regimen, pegylated interferon will remain an integral part of the treatment of genotype 4 hepatitis C virus (HCV). A new 20 kDa pegylated interferon has been developed in a cost-saving fungal-based system and is commercialized in Egypt at a quarter to a third of the price of conventional pegylated interferon. We hereby test the efficacy and safety of this novel cost-saving interferon. One hundred ninety-three consecutive treatment-naive patients with genotype 4 HCV were treated using the following regimen: subcutaneous 20 kDa pegylated interferon 160 μg once weekly plus oral ribavirin 1,000 or 1,200 mg daily (based on body weight <75 kg or ≥75 kg, respectively) for 48 weeks. A sustained virological response (SVR) of 51% was achieved. Interim responses included rapid virological response (RVR): 54%, early virological response (EVR): 78% (complete EVR: 71%, partial EVR: 7%), and end of treatment response: 63%. The most common adverse events were flu-like symptoms, dyspepsia, anorexia, and pruritus. Treatment-related serious adverse events were encountered in only 2 patients (1%). Discontinuation of treatment due to adverse events occurred in only 13 patients (7%). Multiple logistic regression analyses revealed the following factors as predictors of SVR: RVR (P<0.001), alpha-fetoprotein<upper limit of normal (ULN) (P=0.007), and early biochemical response (alanine aminotransferase <ULN at week 12, P=0.018). Hansenula-derived 20 kDa pegylated interferon alpha-2a is an effective and safe treatment for genotype 4 chronic HCV. These results highlight the presence of a less costly treatment for chronic HCV, pending the emergence of an effective inexpensive interferon-free regimen. A direct comparison with 40 kDa interferon remains essential to adequately compare the efficacy and safety.Journal of interferon & cytokine research: the official journal of the International Society for Interferon and Cytokine Research 04/2014; DOI:10.1089/jir.2013.0127 · 1.63 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) remains one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Combined therapy with pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) and ribavirin is the current standard of care treatment for HCV genotype 4. Two types of PEG-IFN are commercially available. The limited number of trials that were conducted for HCV genotype 4 and the few head to head comparisons make it impossible to know which is the best option? In this article we review all available PEG-IFN trials performed worldwide for HCV genotype 4 since 2004. Unless another molecule is developed as a standalone for the treatment of HCV, PEG-IFN will continue to be a source of debate.Liver international: official journal of the International Association for the Study of the Liver 02/2014; 34 Suppl 1:24-8. DOI:10.1111/liv.12397 · 4.41 Impact Factor