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New Pills Show Promise for Hepatitis C
Date:1/3/2013

was combined with ribavirin, or with interferon for people with genotypes 2 and 3. When sofosbuvir was given alone, it achieved a sustained response rate of 60 percent for those with genotypes 2 and 3.

For those with genotype 1 who had never received treatment, sofosbuvir and ribavirin achieved an 84 percent sustained response. For those who hadn't responded to prior treatment, this combination resulted in just a 10 percent sustained viral response rate.

Like ABT-450/r, the side effects for sofosbuvir included headache, fatigue, nausea and skin rash.

Experts welcomed the findings.

"Overall, these results are encouraging, and there's definitely a need for new treatments," said liver specialist Dr. Natasha Von Roenn, from Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago.

"Headache seemed to be a significant side effect in both studies, but the good news was that none of the patients had to stop treatment because of side effects," she noted.

"We're moving closer to having an oral interferon-free regimen with good response rates," she added.

Both studies were phase 2 studies, so neither treatment is yet available.

More information

Learn more about hepatitis C and its treatment from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCES: Fred Poordad, M.D., professor of medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center, and chief medical officer, Alamo Medical Research, San Antonio, Texas; Natasha Von Roenn, M.D., hepatologist and assistant professor of medicine, Loyola University Medical Center, Chicago; Jan. 3, 2013, New England Journal of Medicine


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