Navigation Links
Adding Vitamin B12 to Standard Drugs Might Help Fight Hepatitis C
Date:7/18/2012

WEDNESDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Taking vitamin B12 supplements may help boost the effectiveness of antiviral drugs for patients infected with hepatitis C virus, a new study suggests.

This effect was especially strong in patients whose infection was particularly tough to treat, note Italian researchers led by Dr. Gerardo Nardone of the University of Naples.

According to Nardone's team, the standard treatment of two drugs -- interferon (peg IFN) and ribavarin -- clears the virus in about 50 percent of patients infected with strain 1 of the virus and 80 percent of those infected with strains 2 or 3.

However, that means that the treatment still does not clear hepatitis C in about half of all patients infected with the virus or if the infection returns once treatment ends.

The new study included 94 patients with hepatitis C infection who were randomly assigned to receive standard treatment with antiviral drugs or standard treatment plus 5,000 micrograms of vitamin B12 every month for between six and 12 months.

The ability of the patients' bodies to clear the virus was assessed after one month and three months (dubbed a "rapid viral response"), at the end of treatment ("complete early viral response"), and six months after the end of treatment ("sustained viral response").

After one month of treatment, there was no difference in response between patients receiving standard treatment and those receiving standard treatment plus vitamin B12. However, patients receiving vitamin B12 showed significantly greater response at all of the other time points, particularly by six months after the end of treatment.

Overall, adding vitamin B12 to standard treatment strengthened the rate of long-term, sustained viral response by 34 percent, the researchers noted.

The investigators also found that the increased response associated with taking vitamin B12 was particularly strong in patients with the type 1 strain of hepatitis C and in those with higher levels of infection.

The addition of vitamin B12 to treatment with current antiviral drugs offers a safe and inexpensive option until new-generation antiviral drugs become available or if those new treatments are too expensive, the researchers concluded.

Two U.S. experts were more dubious as they weighed in on the findings.

Dr. David Bernstein is chief of the division of hepatology at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y. He noted that for patients with strains 2 and 3 of the virus, adding vitamin B12 "was not of any value."

As for patients with strain 1 of the virus, Bernstein said the standard of care is now a three-drug regimen of pegylated interferon plus ribavirin plus a protease inhibitor drug, not the two-drug regimen used in this study. So, "while the information presented in this study is interesting in genotype [strain] 1 patients . . . what would be more interesting would be the addition of vitamin B12 to the current standard of care therapy of pegylated interferon plus ribavirin plus a protease inhibitor," Bernstein said.

Dr. Peter Malet, director of the Center for Liver Diseases, and a hepatologist at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, N.Y., agreed.

"This research is very preliminary; it needs to be confirmed or refuted by other studies," he said.

The study was published online July 17 in the journal Gut.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has more about hepatitis C.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCES: David Bernstein, M.D, chief, division of hepatology, North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, N.Y; Peter Malet, M.D, director, Center for Liver Diseases, and hepatologist, Winthrop-University Hospital, Mineola, N.Y.; Gut, news release, July 17, 2012


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Adding drug to standard chemotherapy provides no survival benefit for older lung cancer patients
2. Vitamin E may lower liver cancer risk
3. Increase in RDA for vitamin C could help reduce heart disease, stroke, cancer
4. Vitamin D deficiency and poorer lung function in asthmatic children treated with steroids
5. Higher but not lower doses of vitamin D are effective in fracture risk reduction in older adults
6. Higher Doses of Vitamin D Prevent Fractures in Older Women
7. Low Vitamin D Levels Linked to Weight Gain in Older Women
8. 2 new vitamin D blood tests are often highly inaccurate, researchers say
9. The Gluten Free Society Talks About Vitamin Contamination
10. Older Women Should Not Take Calcium, Vitamin D: Task Force
11. Older adults may need more vitamin D to prevent mobility difficulties
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Adding Vitamin B12 to Standard Drugs Might Help Fight Hepatitis C
(Date:4/25/2017)... Marietta, GA (PRWEB) , ... April 25, 2017 ... ... implant and instrument solutions, announces the continuation of its strategic partnership with and ... surgeons in developing nations in the safe and effective management of complex spine ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... April 24, 2017 , ... The Santana ... during ATA 2017: Telehealth 2.0 — the American Telemedicine Association’s annual conference, on April ... Telehealth Project for using telemedicine to improve the lives of the poor and underserved ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... ... The bar for just about everything—apparel, eyewear, cars and even phone cases—is ... and film stardom.(1) Not to be left out is that most desired of commodities, ... gamut from being encrusted with jewels and precious metals to, at the very least, ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... Veteran Theresa James awoke to the sound of her ... In “Healing Tears,” James depicts every parent’s worst nightmare, when her three children were ... conversations and situations throughout my divorce,” James said. “After the death of my children, ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... April 24, 2017 , ... My T Chai, a South African ... now available for purchase on RevNutrition.com, a popular website specializing in sales of nutritional ... popularized in ancient India and Siam. It spread across Asia and Africa quickly, and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/20/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of ... By Service (Manufacturing, Research), By Country, (Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, ... to their offering. ... The Latin American pharmaceutical contract manufacturing services market is anticipated ... drug registration cost in Latin American countries and continuous economic ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... -- Global Surgical Drainage Device Market: Overview ... excess liquid and air. The fluid to be drained ... Surgical drains are used in a wide variety of ... surgery, neurosurgery, plastic surgery etc. Common use of surgical ... fluid e.g. blood or pus. Surgical drains are available ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... LONDON , April 19, 2017 ... to stimulate an immune response in pets such ... vaccine products are of various types such as ... Vaccines, Toxoid Vaccines, DNA Vaccines and Recombinant Vaccines. ... such as virus or bacteria, which have been ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: