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Hepatitis B

Chronic Hepatitis Cohort Study Sheds Light on Burden of Hepatitis B and C in U.S.

People born between 1945 and 1964 account for the highest proportion of hepatitis B and C cases, and these viruses are a significant cause of illness and death, according to an analysis described in the January 1, 2013, Clinical Infectious Diseases.

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Heavy Alcohol Use Increases Liver Cancer Risk for People with Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B patients with liver cirrhosis who consumed large amounts of alcohol were more likely to develop hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) than people who drank less, according to a report in the December 6, 2012, online edition of the Journal of Hepatology. However, antiviral treatment can help prevent liver cancer.

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Most Hepatitis B Patients Who Respond to Tenofovir Show Improved Liver Health at 5 Years

Treatment with tenofovir (Viread) remains safe and effective over 5 years, and people who achieve sustained viral load suppression experience improvement in liver histology, including regression of fibrosis and cirrhosis, according to study findings described in the December 7, 2012, advance online edition of The Lancet.

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Liver Disease Is Leading Cause of Death for People with Chronic Hepatitis B

Advanced liver disease caused by hepatitis B virus (HBV) -- including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and decompensated cirrhosis -- accounted for more than 40% of deaths of people with chronic hepatitis B in a large health maintenance organization, researchers reported in the December 12, 2012, advance online edition of Hepatology.

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FDA Committee Says Heplisav Hepatitis B Vaccine Is Effective, but Safety Data Inadequate

A U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) committee last month concurred that Dynavax's investigational hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccine Heplisav was effective in preventing infection, but a majority thought there was not enough data to show whether the vaccine is safe.

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Teens Vaccinated Against Hepatitis B as Infants May Lose Immunity

Adolescents who received combined active-passive hepatitis B virus (HBV) immunization soon after birth may lose "immunological memory" that protects them from future infection, with the HBeAg status of the mother playing a key role, researchers reported in the January 2013 issue of Hepatology.

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AASLD 2012: Entecavir Shows Good Efficacy for Black and Hispanic Hepatitis B Patients

The nucleoside analog entecavir (Baraclude) worked as well for previously untreated African-American and Hispanic/Latino hepatitis B patients as it did for the majority white and Asian study populations in prior clinical trials, according to a poster presented at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases Liver Meeting (AASLD 2012) last month in Boston.

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Researchers Discover Structure of Hepatitis B Antigen that Interferes with Immune Response

Researchers from the University of Oxford and the U.S. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases have determined the crystal structure of the hepatitis B "e" antigen (HBeAg), which plays a role in immune tolerance and chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection, according to a study published in the January 8, 2013, issue of the journal Structure. These findings may aid the development of new therapies that improve immune response against the virus.

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AASLD 2012: Adding Pegylated Interferon to Entecavir Improves HBV Treatment Response

Intensifying entecavir (Baraclude) treatment for hepatitis B by adding pegylated interferon lowers HBV viral load and increases the likelihood of hepatitis B "e" antigen (HBeAg) loss, according to a report at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases Liver Meeting (AASLD 2012) last month in Boston. A related study found that hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) levels during treatment can be used to predict response to interferon. alt

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