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New research on improved treatment options and screening strategies for Hepatitis C
Date:10/31/2011

Washington, DC -- Studies reporting on the effectiveness of new therapies for chronic Hepatitis C virus are among the clinical science presented at the American College of Gastroenterology's 76th Annual Scientific Meeting, where investigators also presented findings from an age-based risk assessment and screening intervention for Hepatitis C among Baby Boomers, patients aged 50-65, who saw a gastroenterologist for routine colon cancer screening.

With the recent introduction of new direct acting anti-viral therapies, physicians now have more options for treatment of chronic hepatitis, a chronic viral liver disease that infects more than 4 million Americans. Several studies of the new drug telaprevir in combination with the standard of care (pegylated interferon and ribavirin) looked at the drug's effectiveness among populations of patients who, because of race or failure of previous treatment, are considered hard-to-treat.

"Treatment Effect and Resistance Profiles were Similar Between Black/African American and Non-Black/African American Patients Treated with a Telaprevir Combination Regimen"

Dr. Andrew Muir of Duke University Medical Center and a group of investigators in a large multi-center trial evaluated data on safety and efficacy from two Phase 3 trials (ADVANCE and ILLUMINATE) of the direct acting anti-viral drug telaprevir in combination with the standard of care (peylated interferon and ribavirin) for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C.

In African Americans, a group for whom the need for effective therapies is particularly urgent, a combination treatment of telaprevir with pegylated interferon and ribavirin provided a substantial improvement in "Sustained Viral Response" (SVR) compared to the standard treatment. SVR means that the hepatitis C virus level is undetectable 6 months after stopping therapy and signifies the patient has been cured of the infection. Patients in the Black/African American group had an SVR
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Contact: Jacqueline Gaulin
mediaonly@acg.gi.org
301-263-9000
American College of Gastroenterology
Source:Eurekalert

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