A New Villain for Hepatitis C

A recent article (Hepatology 2014; 59: 2403-12) notes a changing perception for Hepatitis C (HCV) genotype 3.  Previously, HCV genotype 3 was considered easy-to-treat with pegylated interferon and ribavirin.  Along with genotype 2, treatment for genotype 3 was given for half the duration as treatment for genotype 1; in addition, the response was much better than genotype 1 (~70-80% compared with ~50%).

With new treatments, the situation has changed.  In the U.S., genotype 1 accounts for about 70% of all infections and worldwide about 60% of all HCV infections.  In contrast, genotype 3 accounts for 10-15% of the world HCV reservoir.

Specific problems (alluded to by the authors) with genotype 3:

  • Increased steatosis
  • Increased liver fibrosis progression
  • Increased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)
  • Increased risk of end-stage liver disease
  • Reduced sustained virological response (SVR) after direct-acting antiviral therapies

While the newest therapies have dramatically increased SVR rates for genotype 1 and improved treatment for genotype 2, this is not the case with genotype 3 thus far.  Instead of being a good genotype, genotype 3 is now a villain.

Another article provides additional data on HCV genotype 3 (Hepatology 2014; 60: 98-105).  In this study of U.S. Veterans with HCV (n=110,484), there were 8,337 with genotype 3.  In this group, despite being younger, they had a higher risk of cirrhosis (HR 1.40) and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) (HR 1.66) in comparison to HCV genotype 1.

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4 thoughts on “A New Villain for Hepatitis C

  1. Pingback: Telaprevir-Based HCV Therapy is Expensive Too | gutsandgrowth

  2. Pingback: Understanding HCV Treatment Failures with Sofusbuvir | gutsandgrowth

  3. Pingback: An “Ally” For Hepatitis C Genotype 3 | gutsandgrowth

  4. Pingback: Hepatitis C : New and Newer Treatments | gutsandgrowth

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