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Hepatitis C

AASLD 2015: People with Cirrhosis Cured of Hepatitis C Still Have Elevated Liver Cancer Risk

The burden of liver cancer and cirrhosis caused by hepatitis C virus (HCV) is likely to continue to grow in the U.S. despite curative treatment, and people who have cirrhosis at the time they are cured of hepatitis C will require long-term monitoring for liver cancer, studies presented this week at the AASLD Liver Meeting in San Francisco show.

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AASLD 2015: Liver Doctors and Advocates Call for Wider Treatment of People with Hepatitis C

The need for more people living with hepatitis C to received treatment before they develop advanced liver disease was a recurring theme at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) Liver Meeting this week in San Francisco. Many providers expressed frustration about not be able to treat all their patients who need it, while hepatitis C advocates held 2 protests outside the conference venue calling for lower drug prices and wider access to treatment.

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IDWeek 2015: HIV/HCV Coinfected People Achieve High Cure Rates with Grazoprevir/Elbasvir

A dual combination of Merck's grazoprevir and elbasvir taken for 12 or 16 weeks cured most HIV-positive people coinfected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes 1, 4, or 6, and was generally safe and well-tolerated, according to an integrated analysis of three trials presented at the recent IDWeek 2015 conference in San Diego.

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AASLD 2015: Sofosbuvir/ Velpatasvir + GS-9857 for 8 Weeks Cures Most Genotype 1 or 3 Hepatitis C Patients

An 8-week triple combination of Gilead Sciences' sofosbuvir, velpatasvir, and GS-9857 showed a high sustained response rate in a Phase 2 study of difficult-to-treat hepatitis C patients including treatment-experienced people with HCV genotype 3 and liver cirrhosis, according to results presented at the 2015 AASLD Liver Meetingtaking place this week in San Francisco. A 6-week regimen appeared inadequate, however, and more than 8 weeks may be needed for people who previously used direct-acting antivirals.

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State Medicaid Programs Should Cover Hepatitis C Treatment, Federal Agency Says

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services last week issued a letter to state Medicaid programs stating that they are expected to cover new interferon-free antiviral therapies for hepatitis C without undue restrictions, as well as a letter to the pharmaceutical companies that make these drugs asking about purchasing arrangements to ensure wider access.

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AASLD 2015: HCV Infection During Anal Sex May Happen without Blood, Study Finds

Hepatitis C virus is present in large enough quantities in the rectal fluid of men with HIV and hepatitis C coinfection to permit HCV transmission without the presence of blood, researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City reported Sunday at the AASLD Liver Meeting in San Francisco.

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Gilead Requests Approval of Sofosbuvir/Velpatasvir Coformulation for All Hepatitis C Genotypes

Gilead Sciences last week requested U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for a single-tablet regimen containing the hepatitis C virus (HCV) polymerase inhibitor sofosbuvir and the next-generation pangenotypic NS5A inhibitor velpatasvir, formerly known as GS-5816. Unlike the widely used sofosbuvir/ledipasvir (Harvoni), the new combination shows potent activity against HCV genotypes 1 through 6.

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AASLD 2015: Grazoprevir/ Elbasvir Shows High Cure Rate for People Who Inject Drugs

Merck's grazoprevir/elbasvir coformulation demonstrated an overall sustained response rate of 92% for injection drug users receiving opioid substitution therapy in the C-EDGE CO-STAR study, according to a presentation at the 2015 AASLD Liver Meeting taking place this week in San Francisco. Participants maintained good adherence and had a high cure rate even though many continued to use illicit drugs.

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IHRC 2015: Hepatitis C Treatment as Prevention Must Address Concerns of People Who Inject Drugs

While epidemiologists and public health experts are excited about the potential of new hepatitis C drugs to limit onward transmission of the virus among people who inject drugs, some strategies ignore profound barriers to drug users engaging with healthcare and their broader needs. For "treatment as prevention" to be ethical and acceptable to this people who inject drugs, enabling treatment and policy environments need to be created, according to reports at the 24th International Harm Reduction Conference last month in Kuala Lumpur.

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