Interferon-based combination treatment for chronic hepatitis C in the era of direct acting antivirals
The development of protease inhibitors (PIs) such as telaprevir and boceprevir constitutes a milestone in chronic hepatitis C antiviral treatment since it has achieved sustained virological response (SVR) rates of up to 75% in naÃ¯ve and 29-88% in treatment-experienced patients with genotype 1 infection. Both require combination treatment with pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) plus ribavirin (RBV) as PI monotherapy results in resistant mutations. New direct acting antiviral agents (DAAs) have recently been approved or their approval is imminent. Simeprevir administered orally as one pill per day in combination with PEG-IFN/RBV will be the next PI to be approved. The SVR rates at about 72-80% for treatment-naÃ¯ve patients are not a major improvement over telaprevir or boceprevir. However, this treble combination has fewer side effects and drug-drug interactions and most patients undergo shorter treatment duration (24 months) due to earlier treatment responses. Sofosbuvir is the first available once-daily NS5B polymerase inhibitor which has been approved in combination with PEG-IFN/RBV for just 12 weeks with 89% SVR in treatment-naÃ¯ve patients with genotype 1 infection and 83-100% in treatment-experienced patients with genotypes 2/3. The current review focuses on the recent rapid and continuous developments in the management of chronic HCV infection with DAAs in combination with PEG-IFN/RBV.
Keywords Protease inhibitors, NS5B polymerase inhibitors, NS5A inhibitors, cyclophilin inhibitors, pegylated interferon plus ribavirin
Ann Gastroenterol 2015; 28 (1): 55-65