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Final Results of Ideal Study Presented at Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL)
Date:4/26/2008

First Large Study Comparing Leading Hepatitis C Therapies Provides

Important Insights to Help Guide Clinical Practice

MILAN, Italy, April 26 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Final results of the IDEAL study, the first large, randomized, clinical study comparing the leading therapies for chronic hepatitis C, were presented today at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL), providing important insights that may help guide clinical practice for physicians worldwide treating this serious and potentially life-threatening disease.

The IDEAL study compared combination therapy with PEGINTRON(TM) (peginterferon alfa-2b) and REBETOL(R) (ribavirin, USP) vs. Pegasys (peginterferon alfa-2a) and Copegus (ribavirin, USP),(1) as well as a lower dose of PEGINTRON in an investigational combination with REBETOL. The results showed that sustained virologic response (SVR),(2) the primary endpoint of the study, was similar for all three treatment regimens. The study also showed in secondary analyses that PEGINTRON combination therapy provided greater predictability of response at important treatment milestones and significantly lower relapse rates after the end of treatment than Pegasys and Copegus combination therapy, despite patients in the Pegasys arm overall receiving a significantly higher median ribavirin dose over the duration of the study. Safety and tolerability were similar among the treatment arms.

"IDEAL provides important insights about the similarities and differences of the two leading combination therapies for hepatitis C, and how physicians can use these findings to help manage their patients," said Robert J. Spiegel, M.D., chief medical officer and senior vice president, Schering-Plough Research Institute.

In IDEAL (Individualized Dosing Efficacy vs. flat dosing to assess optimaL pegylated interferon therapy), 3,070 previously untreated U.S. patients with HCV genotype 1, the most co
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SOURCE Schering-Plough Corporation
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