PEG-IFNalpha/RBV combination therapy for chronic hepatitis C patients increases serum ferritin level while it improves sustained viral response rate.
ABSTRACT We investigated the significance of serum ferritin levels in pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) and ribavirin (RBV) combination therapy for chronic hepatitis C (CHC) and examined its correlation with serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels during therapy and response to the therapy.
A total of 175 patients with CHC received the combination therapy. Correlations between serum ferritin levels and serum ALT levels at 12 and 24 weeks of therapy were examined. Differences in serum ferritin levels during therapy between patients with sustained viral response (SVR) and non-SVR were also examined.
Only 24 (13.7%) and 20 (11.4%) patients showed elevated serum ALT levels (> or = 70 IU/l) at 12 and 24 weeks of therapy, respectively. There was no correlation between serum ferritin levels and ALT levels. Ninety-five (54.3%) of 175 patients achieved SVR. Serum ferritin levels increased dramatically in both SVR and non-SVR groups after starting the therapy and were significantly higher in the SVR group throughout the therapy.
Serum ferritin level increases during PEG-IFN and RBV combination therapy; however, it did not correlate with either serum ALT level or the total dose of RBV. Higher serum ferritin levels during combination therapy appear to be associated with favorable therapeutic response.
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ABSTRACT: An increase in serum ferritin levels during combined interferon-ribavirin treatment in chronic patients infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) can occur. A study was conducted to determine whether observing the kinetics of serum ferritin levels during antiviral therapy, may assist in predicting the rate of sustained virological response. The kinetics of serum ferritin levels during antiviral therapy in treatment-naive, adherent patients with chronic HCV who had early virological response were characterized. Thirteen patients achieved sustained virological response (group 1) while eight patients did not (group 2). Pre-treatment serum ferritin levels were higher in group 2 patients. During antiviral therapy, serum ferritin levels increased in both groups. On treatment, the median increase (compared to baseline) and the calculated rate of the increase in serum ferritin levels was higher in group 1 patients (874% vs. 272%, P < 0.05, 63%/week vs. 13%/week, P = 0.024, respectively). Red blood cell lysis did not contribute to the increase in serum ferritin level. Post-treatment (1st month) serum ferritin levels in group 1 patients were lower than in group 2 patients. In addition, the degree of decline in the 1st month serum ferritin levels (from peak levels) in group 1 patients was higher (76% vs. 49%, P = 0.039). Measuring serum ferritin levels during antiviral therapy in HCV patients who had an early virological response may assist in predicting sustained virological response.Journal of Medical Virology 07/2011; 83(7):1262-8. DOI:10.1002/jmv.22093 · 2.22 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract Objective: Increased serum ferritin (SF) levels are encountered in various conditions, such as inflammatory syndromes and haemochromatosis. Interferon alpha is one of the stimulants of SF. In this study we aimed to evaluate SF changes in patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) during antiviral therapy, and the relationship between SF and treatment response. Methods: Data from a total of 97 patients who had received peginterferon (PEG-IFN) plus ribavirin combination therapy for CHC, and who had been followed up for more than 6 months after treatment, were analyzed retrospectively. Patients who had undetectable hepatitis C virus RNA at 6 months after the completion of antiviral therapy were regarded as having achieved a sustained viral response (SVR), while the remaining patients were categorized as non-SVR. Differences in SF levels during therapy between SVR patients and non-SVR patients were examined. Results: We found that patients who achieved SVR had lower baseline ferritin levels. It was observed that SF levels increased dramatically in both the SVR and non-SVR groups after starting therapy, remained high until the end of the treatment period, and returned to baseline levels after completion of treatment. However the SF rise was found to be significantly higher in patients who achieved an SVR than in those without SVR at each time-point during treatment. Conclusions: SF levels increase during PEG-IFN-based therapy for CHC. A lower SF level before starting treatment and higher SF levels during therapy appear to be associated with a favourable treatment response. Therefore, rises in SF, especially during the early phase of treatment, could be a predictor of SVR.Scandinavian Journal of Infectious Diseases 06/2012; 44(10):761-5. DOI:10.3109/00365548.2012.677545 · 1.64 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Interferon (IFN) activates various immune systems in vivo and is administered to patients with diseases such as viral hepatitis B, C and malignant tumors. Iron dysregulation has been reported during treatment with IFN, however, it remains unclear whether IFN itself affects iron metabolism. We therefore determined the effect of IFN on iron metabolism. Mouse IFNα was administered to mice, and serum, spleen, bone marrow, liver and duodenum tissue samples were subsequently collected. The mRNA and proteins expression of genes involved in iron metabolism were then analyzed by real-time RT-PCR, western blotting and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Immunofluorescence for ferroportin was also performed. Among the gene expressions analysed, we found that the expression of hepcidin, an iron regulatory hormone produced in the liver, was highly upregulated after IFNα treatment. Serum hepcidin levels and hepcidin mRNA expression in the liver were both found to be increased in the IFNα-treated mice. The expression of ferroportin (the target molecule of hepcidin) in the duodenum of the IFNα-treated mice was observed to be decreased, indicating that hepcidin upregulation could be physiologically functional. In vitro analysis of primary hepatocytes treated with IFNα and human hepatoma-derived cells showed an upregulation of hepcidin mRNA, including an activation of STAT3, which was shown to be involved in the hepcidin upregulation. Our results indicate that iron absorption is decreased during IFN treatment; this favorable effect could inhibit iron overload during IFN treatment and may enhance the action of IFN.Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology 08/2013; DOI:10.1111/jgh.12348 · 3.33 Impact Factor