PEG / Maintenance interferon therapy for nonresponders


 What is Hepatitis

 How is it Transmitted

 Long Term Prognosis

 Complications of HCV

 Liver Biopsy

 Treatment Info (Interferon, Herbal, etc)

 Lab Tests (PCR, Genotype,etc.)

 Nutrition & Alternative Info

 Patient Information (Support Groups, Doctor Listing, etc)

 Related Webpages

 Transplant Info

 HCV Webrings

 My guestbookbook

 Site Awards

 FAQ & Disclaimers

January 2000
Chronic Hepatitis C VIRUS (HCV) Infection

Therapy with pegylated interferon alfa-2a (PEG-IFN) and ribavirin. M. Sulkowski et al. treated 20 patients with chronic HCV infection with a combination of PEG-IFN (Hoffman-La Roche, Inc.) 180 ug SC weekly plus oral ribavirin 1000-1200 mg daily x 24-48 weeks. By week 24, serum ALT levels had normalized in 80% (16/20) of patients and serum HCV RNA had become undetectable in 84% (16/19) of patients. Adverse events occurred with a similar frequency in fasting (n=10) and nonfasting (n=10) patients, and no patients were discontinued due to anemia or neutropenia. In this small pilot study, PEG-IFN plus ribavirin had good antiviral activity and was well tolerated. A large multicenter trial of combination therapy is ongoing and will hopefully confirm these encouraging preliminary results. (Sulkowski M, et al. Hepatology 1999; 30: 197A)

Maintenance interferon therapy for nonresponders with persistent viremia. Hepatic histological improvement has been observed to occur in some patients with chronic HCV infection treated with interferon or interferon/ribavirin despite continued viremia at the end of therapy, i.e., nonresponders. Mitchell Schiffman and colleagues studied patients who remained HCV RNA positive but had a histological response after 6 months of interferon alfa-2b therapy. These patients were randomized to either continue (n=27) or discontinue interferon treatment (n=26) to determine if maintenance interferon (3 MU 3 x weekly) prevents histological progression. After 30 months, 30% of untreated patients had worsening of histology (p less than 0.01), while 80% of the interferon-treated patients experienced further histological improvement (p less than 0.03). These data show that maintenance interferon therapy may benefit the subgroup of nonresponders to interferon therapy who demonstrate a hepatic histological response in spite of persistent viremia.
(Schiffman M, et al. Gastroenterology 1999; 117: 1164-1172)

Home | What is HCV | Transmission | Future | Complications | Biopsy | Treatment | Lab | Nutrition | Patient | Links | Transplant | Webrings | guestbookbook | Awards | FAQ |