Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New Studies Examine Elimination of Hepatitis B and C

03.04.2009
Two new studies in the April issue of Hepatology explore the ways that hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) can be cleared from patients’ bodies. Hepatology is a journal published by John Wiley & Sons on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD). The articles are also available online at Wiley Interscience (www.interscience.wiley.com).

Both HBV and HCV are global health problems. They can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer and they cause millions of deaths each year. Treatments to contain or cure these infections have been difficult to find. Researchers continue to explore potential therapies and the immune system response to the diseases.

The first new study sheds light on the immunological response to coinfection with HBV and HCV. Researchers led by Evangelista Sagnelli of Naples, Italy, report that for patients with chronic HCV, HBV superinfection can lead to clearance of the HCV.

They compared 29 HCV patients to 29 people, matched by age, gender and risk factors, who did not have HCV. All of the patients developed acute HBV during the same time period. The patients with HCV were more likely to have a severe course of illness, and one died of liver failure. However, nearly a quarter (six out of 24) emerged HCV-free.

“Extensive acute hepatocellular necrosis, although life-threatening, may lead to a clearance of chronic HCV infection,” the authors report. Still, the severity of acute HBV in HCV patients raises “the concern that this clinical event could become an emerging health care problem in countries with a wide spread of both HBV and HCV infection,” they write.

“Further efforts should be made to extend the use of HBV vaccination in patients with chronic HCV infection” they also suggest.

The second study, headed by Maurizia Brunetto of Pisa, Italy, recommends interferon-based therapies as a first-line approach for patients with chronic HBV, because these have the best chance of clearing hepatitis B virus surface antigen (HBsAg). The reduction of HBsAg serum levels leading to HBsAg clearance is the hallmark of a newly achieved immune control of the infection by mean of a significant reduction of virus infected hepatocytes.

The researchers retrospectively investigated the relationship between treatment regimens and changing levels of HbsAg in 386 patients in a multinational study.

“Significantly more patients treated with peginterferon alfa-2a (21 percent) or peginterferon alfa-2a plus lamivudine (17 percent) achieved HBsAg levels under 100 IU/mL at the end of treatment compared with lamivudine (1 percent),” they report.

“HBsAg clearance represents the best possible and closest to cure outcome of antiviral therapy in patients with chronic hepatitis B, but is realistic almost exclusively among patients receiving interferon-based regimens, which are recommended as a first-line therapeutic approach,” they conclude. Interferon therapy switches the chronic active hepatitis B patient in the non-active HBV carrier who lose serum HBsAg during the years after the end of therapy. If the case occurs before the development of liver cirrhosis it endows the patient with the same life expectancy of the non-HBV infected subject.

Article: “HBV Superinfection in HCV Chronic Carriers, A Disease That Is Frequently Severe But Associated With the Eradication of HCV.” Sagnelli, Evangelista; Coppola, Nicola; Pisaturo, Mariantonietta; Masiello, Addolorata; Tonziello, Gilda; Sagnelli, Caterina; Messina, Vincenzo; Filippini, Pietro. Hepatology; April 2009.

Article: “Hepatitis B Virus Surface Antigen Levels—A Guide to Sustained Response to Peginterferon Alfa-2a in HBeAg-negative Chronic Hepatitis B.” Brunetto, Maurizia; Moriconi, Francesco; Bonino, Ferruccio; Lau, George; Farci, Patrizia; Yurdaydin, Cihan; Piratvisuth, Teerha; Luo, Kangxian; Yuming, Wang; Hadziyannis, Stephanos; Wolf, Eva; McCloud, Philip; Batria, Richard; Marcellin, Patrick. Hepatology; April 2009.

Sean Wagner | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.blackwellpublishing.com

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT

nachricht Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Closing the carbon loop

08.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Applicability of dynamic facilitation theory to binary hard disk systems

08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D

08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>