with its International Liver Congress last month, the European
Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL)
released its 5th Clinical Practice Guidelines on the Management
of Hepatitis C Virus Infection.
in the March 2011 Journal of Hepatology, these guidelines
are intended to assist physicians and other healthcare providers,
as well as patients, in making decisions about care and treatment
of acute and chronic hepatitis
guidelines apply to therapies that are approved at the time
of their publication," reads the report's introduction.
"Several new therapeutic options have completed phase III
development for patients infected with HCV genotype 1 and are
currently awaiting licensing and approval in Europe and the
United States. Therefore, the EASL [Clinical Practice Guidelines]
on the management of HCV infection will be updated on a regular
basis upon approval of additional novel therapies."
first 2 oral direct-acting hepatitis C drugs -- boceprevir
(Victrelis) and telaprevir
(Incivek) -- were recommended for approval by the U.S. Food
and Drug Administration's Antiviral Drugs Advisory Committee
in late April. These drugs will initially be used in combination
with the old standard of care, pegylated interferon plus ribavirin,
but all-oral combinations are now under study.