Showing posts with label svr. Show all posts
Showing posts with label svr. Show all posts

Saturday, December 1, 2018

After The Liver Meeting 2018 Summary: Viral Hepatitis & Fatty Liver Disease

The Liver Meeting® 2018
San Francisco, CA.
November 9-13, 2018

Page updated: December 4, 2018

After The Liver Meeting
Hi folks, today we have a nice summary of the Liver Meeting, highlighting significant research on both viral hepatitis and fatty liver disease. Follow each post-meeting link provided below and start reviewing expert analysis of key data presented at the meeting, listen to audio live from the meeting, or view slidesets, and capsule summaries.

HCV Advocate December Newsletter
December 1, 2018
In this month's HCV Advocate Newsletter coverage of the Liver Meeting continues; read easy to understand commentary on HCV-related topics that matter most to patients. In next month's issue notable research on liver cancer presented at the meeting will be featured.
Start here: 
http://hcvadvocate.org/news/NewsUpdates_pdf/Advocate_2018/advocate1218.pdf

Webinar
Dec 4, 2018
Liver Meeting 2018 Updates” presented by Tatyana Kushner, MD, MSCE from Mount Sinai Medical Center, available now over at HepCure.

Webcast Coming Soon
Chronic Liver Disease Foundation
Symposium live from the meeting featuring table discussions with leading physicians discussing viral hepatitis, soon to be launched by Chronic Liver Disease Foundation (CLDF).
Symposium on Hepatitis featuring table discussions with leading physicians!
The primary goal of this CME symposium is to better understand how to effectively identify, manage, and treat patients with viral hepatitis in order to achieve viral eradication by 2030.

Updates
Healio
Website Healio - Twitter @HealioHep
December 4, 2018
This year at The Liver Meeting, data presented on liver transplantation focused on comorbid complications, such as alcohol misuse and obesity, and their correlated…

ID Practitioner
December 4, 2018
Hepatitis C debrief: Therapy has matured, access issues remain
The Liver Meeting 2018: Hepatitis B novel therapies debrief – key abstracts

Modern Medicine 
December 4, 2018
HCV Expert Interview with Jordan Feld, MD, MPH
In this interview, Jordan Feld, MD, MPH, discusses key highlights from studies presented at The Liver Meeting 2018, held recently in San Francisco by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD).

Hep
Website: Hep 
December 3, 2018
By Benjamin Ryan 
A review of the major findings presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases in San Francisco

infohep
November 30, 2018
Website infohep Twitter - @infohep
This month’s infohep bulletin focuses on news from The Liver Meeting 2018, organised by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), which took place in San Francisco, USA, from 9 to 13 November 2018.
Link: Conference bulletin

Medscape
November 29, 2018
Website Medscape Twitter @Medscape
Viral Hepatitis: Five Highlights From the Liver Meeting
Dr William Balistreri reports on the most important viral hepatitis news from this year's Liver Meeting.

Clinical Care Options
Nov 27, 2018
Website Clinical Care Options - Twitter @CCO_Hepatitis 
Hot Topics in NASH
Nov 28, 2018
Website Healio - Twitter @HealioHep
Healio presents highlights of Fatty Liver and NASH data presented this year at The Liver Meeting.
Fatty liver highlights from The Liver Meeting 2018

Hep B Foundation
Nov 27, 2018
After the Liver Meeting, Dr. Tim Block, the @HepBFoundation's co-founder & President, answered some of the most asked questions about the path to a hepatitis B cure. This is a two-part series. Read the first Q & A here: http://ow.ly/UEAT50jOb61 

Video
Quick Review: Each Day Of The Meeting
Practice Point is once again launching daily clinical clips reviewing hot topics in HCV, presented each day at the meeting. Although the activity is intended for physicians and health care professionals, anyone, especially patients can benefit from each 5-minute review as well:
Independent Conference Coverage from the 2018 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD)*

In this video series, Dr. Saab will present ‘what you need to know in 5‐minutes’ regarding today's presentations from AASLD 2018 in San Francisco, CA
Free "registration" is required, once accomplished:
ACCESS ACTIVITY
Answer 3 question pre-test, and click Access Activity.
Twitter - @Practice_Point

Navigate This Blog - Stay Updated

Check back for updates
Enjoy the weekend!
Tina

Friday, November 30, 2018

Hepatitis C: How resistance-associated substitutions evolved after DAA treatment failures

Full-text article available online @ Medscape, free registration may be required. 

This study investigated how resistance-associated substitutions evolved after DAA treatment failures in HCV-infected patients, and assessed the effect of those substitutions on viral fitness.

J Viral Hepat. 2018 Nov;25(11):1251-1259. doi: 10.1111/jvh.12932. Epub 2018 Jun 13.
Evolution and persistence of resistance-associated substitutions of hepatitis C virus after direct-acting antiviral treatment failures.
Jeong Y1,2, Jin B1,2, Lee HW2,3, Park HJ2, Park JY2,3, Kim DY2,3, Han KH1,2,3,4, Ahn SH1,2,3, Kim S2,3,4,5.

Abstract
Daclatasvir plus asunaprevir (DCV+ASV) treatment is an all-oral direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for the genotype 1b HCV-infected patients. In this study, we investigated how resistance-associated substitutions (RASs) evolved after treatment failures and assessed the effect of those substitutions on viral fitness. Sequencing of NS5A and NS3 revealed typical RASs after treatment failures. Interestingly, the RASs of NS3 reverted to the wild-type amino acid within 1 year after treatment failures. However, the RASs of NS5A were stable and did not change. The effect of NS5A and NS3 RASs on viral RNA replication was assessed after mutagenic substitution in the genotype 1b HCV RNA. Among single substitutions, the effect of D168V was more substantial than the others and the effect of the triple mutant combination (D168V+L31V+Y93H) was the most severe. The RAS at NS5A Y93 affected both viral RNA replication and virus production. Finally, the effect of trans-complementation of NS5A was demonstrated in our co-transfection experiments and these results suggest that such a trans-complementation effect of NS5A may help maintain the NS5A RASs for a long time even after cessation of the DAA treatment. In conclusion, the results from this investigation would help understand the emergence and persistence of RASs.

KEYWORDS:
asunaprevir; daclatasvir; hepatitis C virus; resistance-associated substitution; viral fitness

Combination interventions for Hepatitis C and Cirrhosis reduction among people who inject drugs: An agent-based, networked population simulation experiment

Combination interventions for Hepatitis C and Cirrhosis reduction among people who inject drugs: An agent-based, networked population simulation experiment
Bilal Khan, Ian Duncan, Mohamad Saad, Daniel Schaefer, Ashly Jordan, Daniel Smith, Alan eaigus,
Don Des Jarlais, Holly Hagan, Kirk Dombrowski 

Published: November 29, 2018



Fig 1. Finite state diagram of the HCV model used in the experiments.
Once infected, agents face a series of stochastic and enforced progressions through a series of ever worsening liver function. Throughout the simulation, infected agents who have reached a chronic state (non-acute HCV infected agents) face a small but regular chance of moving directly to cirrhosis, decompensated cirrhosis, or hepatocellular carcinoma. In addition, their Metavir fibrosis level is incremented yearly, moving them gradually from early stage fibrosis to cirrhosis. Once in any of the three severe liver stages, agents face an increasing probability of death due to HCV infection, incremented on a five year basis.
https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0206356.g001

Full-text article:

Abstract
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is endemic in people who inject drugs (PWID), with prevalence estimates above 60% for PWID in the United States. Previous modeling studies suggest that direct acting antiviral (DAA) treatment can lower overall prevalence in this population, but treatment is often delayed until the onset of advanced liver disease (fibrosis stage 3 or later) due to cost. Lower cost interventions featuring syringe access (SA) and medically assisted treatment (MAT) have shown mixed results in lowering HCV rates below current levels. However. little is known about the potential cumulative effects of combining DAA and MAT treatment. While simulation experiments can reveal likely long-term effects, most prior simulations have been performed on closed populations of model agents—a scenario quite different from the open, mobile populations known to most health agencies. This paper uses data from the Centers for Disease Control’s National HIV Behavioral Surveillance project, IDU round 3, collected in New York City in 2012 to parameterize simulations of open populations. To test the effect of combining DAA treatment with SA/MAT participation, multiple, scaled implementations of the two intervention strategies were simulated. Our results show that, in an open population, SA/MAT by itself has only small effects on HCV prevalence, while DAA treatment by itself can lower both HCV and HCV-related advanced liver disease prevalence. More importantly, the simulation experiments suggest that combinations of the two strategies can, when implemented together and at sufficient levels, dramatically reduce HCV incidence. We conclude that adopting SA/MAT implementations alongside DAA interventions can play a critical role in reducing the long-term consequences of ongoing HCV infection.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

HIV, HCV and HBV: A Review of Parallels and Differences

Infect Dis Ther. 2018 Dec;7(4):407-419. doi: 10.1007/s40121-018-0210-5. Epub 2018 Sep 4.

HIV, HCV and HBV: A Review of Parallels and Differences.
Leoni MC1,2, Ustianowski A3,4, Farooq H3, Arends JE5.

Abstract
Elimination of the three blood-borne viruses-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV)-as public health issues may be plausible in the near future. Spectacular advances have been made with the introduction of highly effective antiviral agents into clinical practice, and prevention strategies are available for all three infections. Effective disease control, laid out by WHO global strategies, is currently feasible for all three viruses. However, for worldwide elimination of these viruses, effective vaccines are required that are currently only available for HBV. In this review differences and parallels among HIV, HCV and HBV will be discussed with a focus on virologic and therapeutic issues, and prospects for the future of HBV will be presented.

Article:
Shared via twitter by @HenryEChang
View Online:
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40121-018-0210-5

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Treatment of hepatitis C virus genotype 4 in the DAA era

Review Article

Treatment of hepatitis C virus genotype 4 in the DAA era 
Antonio Di Biagio Email author View ORCID ID profile , Lucia Taramasso and Giovanni Cenderello Virology Journal 201815:180
https://doi.org/10.1186/s12985-018-1094-4© The Author(s).

2018 Received: 22 November 2017 Accepted: 13 November 2018
Published: 22 November 2018

Abstract
The recently approved interferon-free DAA (direct antiviral agents) regimens have shown not only to be effective in terms of sustained virological response (SVR) rates (> 90%) but also well tolerated in most hepatitis C virus (HCV) infected patients. Nevertheless HCV genotypes are different and only a small percentage of trials consider genotype 4 (GT4), which was associated with lower rates of SVR compared with other genotypes before the arrival of the DAA’s. In this review, we discuss the efficacy of DAA therapy in GT4 HCV infection with specific reference to more recent studies, including those conducted in a ‘field-practice’ scenario. Overall, DAA-based regimens appear more effective also in the poorly-explored setting of patients with HCV GT4 infection. Despite an overall limited number of patients was evaluated, favorable results are being derived from studies on ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir, sofosbuvir and velpatasvir, whether or not in association with voxilaprevir, and with the new combined therapy glecaprevir + pibentasvir.


SVR in patients with HCV genotype 6 treated with ledipasvir+sofosbuvir or sofosbuvir+velpatasvir

Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2018 Nov 22. https://doi.org/10.1111/apt.15043 . [Epub ahead of print]

Sustained virologic response rates in patients with chronic hepatitis C genotype 6 treated with ledipasvir+sofosbuvir or sofosbuvir+velpatasvir
Emily Nguyen Sam Trinh Huy Trinh Huy Nguyen Khanh Nguyen Aivien Do Brian Levitt Son Do My Nguyen Treta Purohit Eugenie Shieh Mindie H. Nguyen 

First published: 22 November 2018


Abstract
BACKGROUND: 
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype 6 (GT 6) is the predominant genotype among certain Asian populations. The availability of newer DAA options is limited in many parts of Asia.

AIM: 
To compare sustained virologic response (SVR-12) rates between ledipasvir and sofosbuvir (LDV+SOF) and velpatasvir+SOF (SOF+VEL) for patients with HCVGT6 infection.

METHOD: 
Retrospective study of consecutive adult HCVGT6 patients identified via ICD 9 code: 070.5 from United States treatment centers. Treatment was LDV+SOF or SOF+VEL for 8-24 weeks. A 1:1 propensity score matching (PSM) on HCV RNA, cirrhosis, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, platelets, and fibrosis score was conducted among the treatment-naïve HCVGT6 patients to balance groups and isolate treatment effects.

RESULTS: 
After exclusion criteria, 149 patients remained (n = 135 treatment-naïve; n = 14 treatment-experienced). The mean age was 63.8 ± 10.2 years, 66.9% male, and 93.9% Vietnamese. In treatment-naïve arm, 52.2% LDV+SOF cohort were cirrhotic compared to 11.6% SOF+VEL cohort (P < 0.0001). SVR-12 for LDV+SOF was 96.4% and 100% for the SOF+VEL cohort (P = 0.22). SVR-12 for cirrhotic patients was 95.4% (n = 41/43) for LDV+SOF and 100.0% (n = 5/5) for SOF+VEL (P = 0.62). After PSM (n = 33 per group), LDV+SOF SVR-12 rate was 97.0% compared to SOF+VEL SVR-12 of 100% (P = 0.31). The treatment-experienced group (n = 14), were all treated with LDV+SOF-SVR-12 of 92.3%.

CONCLUSION: 
Whether treatment-naïve, treatment-experienced, or cirrhotic patients with HCV GT 6 residing in the US had excellent outcomes when treated with SOF+VEL or LDV+SOF. Since LDV+SOF is more readily available globally, our results may provide clinicians with a treatment option when cost and availability limit the treatment choice.

Full-Text Online:
https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/apt.15043

In half of hepatitis C patients, DAA treatment can shortened to 6 weeks

Recommended 
Media
Hepatitis C treatment can be shortened in 50 percent of patients, study finds
Shorter treatment times could significantly reduce costs of the expensive therapy

Slides available online @ NATAP

AASLD The Liver Meeting 2018
Abstract

In half of hepatitis C patients, DAA treatment can shortened to 6 weeks
Last Updated: 2018-11-23
By Lorraine L. Janeczko

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - In about half of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, response-guided therapy with oral direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) can be reduced from the standard 12 weeks to as little as six weeks and still be effective, according to a new pilot study.

DAAs have revolutionized hepatitis C treatment, eliminating the virus and enabling a cure with minimal side effects in over 90% of patients treated. But the high cost, which can exceed $50,000 per patient, limits patient access and burdens the insurance industry, researchers write in a press release.

"Implementing response-guided therapy as standard of care may lead to significant cost savings on the expensive hepatitis C treatment," senior author Dr. Amir Shlomai of Beilinson Hospital in Petah-Tikva, Israel, told Reuters Health by email.

The team enrolled 22 HCV patients with compensated liver disease and genotypes 1 to 6, who were either treatment naive or interferon experienced. Participants were treated with one of four DAA regimens chosen by the investigators.

Viral load was measured at baseline, at day 2, and at weeks 1, 2, and 4 after the start of treatment. The primary endpoint was the proportion of patients with sustained virologic response at 12 weeks (SVR12) post-treatment, with undetectable HCV RNA (<15 IU/mL).

The researchers presented the preliminary proof-of-concept results in a late-breaking abstract poster session on November 12 at The Liver Meeting 2018, the annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), in San Francisco.

Participants averaged roughly 50 years of age, 11 were female and 9% had METAVIR scores of F3-4. The most common genotypes were G1b (59%) G3 (27%), G1a (9%), and G2 (5%).

The drug combinations sofosbuvir/velpatasvir, elbasvir/grazoprevir, sofosbuvir/ledipasvir and glecaprevir/pibrentasvir were administered to 41%, 31%, 23% and 5% of participants, respectively.

Mathematical modeling of viral kinetics was performed during weeks 2-4 to project time to cure, and model projections were used to individualize each participant's treatment duration.

Modeling predicted that treatment duration could be shortened to 10 weeks in one patient (5%), eight weeks in eight (36%) and six weeks in two (9%).

Of the 19 participants who completed therapy, 100% had undetectable viral load at the end of treatment. Of those, 18 (95%) remained HCV-undetectable four weeks after treatment.

Of the 15 patients who reached post-treatment week 12, 14 (93%) achieved SVR12.

One treatment-naive G3 patient with F1 fibrosis who was treated with sofosbuvir/velpatasvir for six weeks relapsed. Virus sequencing did not detect resistance-associated substitutions at baseline or in response to treatment, and no significant side effects were found among the DAA-treated patients.

"A shorter treatment may lead to improved compliance to treatment, especially in special populations, including hepatitis C patients with limited health insurance benefits," Dr. Harel Dahari of Loyola University Chicago in Maywood, Illinois, who also worked on the study, told Reuters health by email.

Dr. Dahari estimates that the shorter treatment may potentially decrease the cost of HCV drugs by up to 20%.

Now that the proof-of-concept pilot study has shown that response-guided therapy can potentially reduce treatment times, a large multicenter trial to validate the results is underway in Israel, the authors say.

Clalit Health Services in Israel and the United States National Institutes of Health helped support the study. The authors state that they have no conflicts of interest.

http://www.chronicliverdisease.org/reuters/article.cfm?article=20181123Other134843869

SOURCE: LB-34 Response-Guided Therapy with Direct-Acting Antivirals Shortens Treatment Duration in 50% of HCV Treated Patients

AASLD The Liver Meeting 2018.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

The Revolution in Treatment of Hepatitis C

Medical Clinics
January 2019 Volume 103, Issue 1, Pages 43–55 

The Revolution in Treatment of Hepatitis C
•Hepatitis C infection typically goes unrecognized at onset and develops into a chronic infection that can lead to cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer.
•Novel treatments that are safe, without significant side effects and nearly 100% effective became available in the last 5 years.
•Sustained viral response (SVR--no virus detectable 12 weeks after end of treatment) is synonymous with life-long cure.
•SVR patients with cirrhosis require ongoing surveillance for liver cancer.
•Remaining challenges include identifying those who are not aware but have infection and providing treatment for those lacking funding.

Article Outline
Key points
Introduction
Epidemiology
Risk factors for hepatitis C
Natural history
Virology
Acute hepatitis C
Chronic hepatitis C
Cirrhosis
Pretreatment testing
Current treatment options for hepatitis C
Eight-week treatment options
Hepatitis B screening
Special patient populations
Renal disease
Decompensated liver disease
Post-treatment laboratory studies and follow-up
Barriers to treatment

Treatment of hepatitis C with interferon therapy produced some cures early on, but was associated with significant side effects. Because of further advances in the molecular understanding of hepatitis C, by 2014 effective treatments became available that far surpassed all prior interferon-based regimens in efficacy, tolerability, and safety. This led to rapid transformation of a hard-to-treat disease to simple, safe, and effective treatment offered to anyone. This article focuses on hepatitis C epidemiology; the clinical impact and consequences; discussion of past hepatitis C treatments; and a review of current recommendations for screening, diagnosis, and treatment of this ubiquitous virus.
https://www.medical.theclinics.com/article/S0025-7125(18)30098-1/fulltext?rss=yes

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

The incidence of diabetes, stroke and kidney disease falls after hepatitis C cure

AASLD Liver Meeting news @ infohep
The incidence of diabetes, stroke and kidney disease falls after hepatitis C cure
Keith Alcorn Published: 12 November 2018 

The incidence of some of the most serious extrahepatic health problems caused by hepatitis C declines sharply after the infection is cured by antiviral treatment, a review of people treated for hepatitis C in the Canadian province of British Columbia has found.

The findings were presented by Carmine Rossi of the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control at the 2018 AASLD Liver Meeting in San Francisco on Sunday.

Hepatitis C infection is associated with a higher incidence of chronic kidney disease, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Although the mechanisms leading to an increased risk of these conditions in people with hepatitis C are not fully understood, liver damage caused by hepatitis C is known to disrupt glucose metabolism. Chronic hepatitis C infection affects the cardiovascular system in numerous ways and also damages the kidneys.


Conference Updates: infohep news 
Twitter - @infohep
Sign up for our AASLD Liver Meeting news bulletin.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Glucose Metabolism Changes in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C Treated with Direct Acting Antivirals

In Case You Missed It

Can J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2018 Oct 3;2018:6095097. doi: 10.1155/2018/6095097. eCollection 2018.

Glucose Metabolism Changes in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C Treated with Direct Acting Antivirals.
Drazilova S1, Janicko M2, Skladany L3, Kristian P4, Oltman M5, Szantova M6, Krkoska D7, Mazuchova E7, Piesecka L8, Vahalova V8, Rac M9, Schreter I4, Virag L4, Koller T10, Liptakova A11, Ondrasova M12, Jarcuska P2.

This retrospective study confirmed that the prevalence of either type 2 diabetes mellitus ( T2DM ) or impaired fasting glucose (IFG) increases in chronic hepatitis C patients with the degree of fibrosis; patients with F4 fibrosis had 27.1% prevalence of IFG and 31.8% of T2DM. The predictive factors for T2DM had besides F4 fibrosis also higher age and BMI. Significant decrease of fasting glycemia at the end of treatment and 12 weeks after that was observed in the whole cohort and in subgroups of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus, impaired fasting glucose, Child-Pugh A cirrhotic patients, treatment experienced patients, and treatment experienced cirrhotics. Long term follow-up may further show if the achievement of SVR after DAA treatment will reduce the risk of future T2DM development similarly to SVR after interferon treatment and if the improvement of glycemic control in patients with T2DM decreases the risk of chronic complications and improves survival.

Open Access

Abstract
Background and Aims
Chronic hepatitis C is a systemic disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) belongs to more common extrahepatic. The aim of this study was to (i) explore the prevalence of impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and T2DM in patients with chronic hepatitis C, (ii) explore the effect of direct acting antivirals (DAA) treatment on the glycemia, and (iii) explore the factors that modulate the effect of DAA treatment on glycemia in patients with chronic hepatitis C.

Methods 
We performed a longitudinal retrospective observational study focused on the patients undergoing DAA treatment of chronic hepatitis C. Data about glycemia, history of diabetes, hepatitis C virus, treatment, and liver status, including elastography, were obtained at baseline (before treatment start), at the end of treatment and 12 weeks after the end of treatment. Patients were treated with various regimens of direct acting antivirals.

Results
We included 370 patients; 45.9% had F4 fibrosis. At baseline, the prevalence of T2DM increased with the degree of fibrosis (F0-F2 14.4%, F3 21.3%, and F4 31.8%, p=0.004). Fasting glycemia also increased with the degree of fibrosis (F0-F2 5.75±0.18 F3 5.84±0.17, and F4 6.69±0.2 mmol/L, p=0.001). We saw significant decrease of glycemia after treatment in all patients, but patients without T2DM or IFG from 6.21±0.12 to 6.08±0.15 mmol/L (p=0.002). The decrease was also visible in treatment experienced patients and patients with Child-Pugh A cirrhosis.

Conclusion
We confirmed that the prevalence of either T2DM or IFG increases in chronic hepatitis C patients with the degree of fibrosis. The predictive factors for T2DM were, besides F4, fibrosis also higher age and BMI. Significant decrease of fasting glycemia after the DAA treatment was observed in the whole cohort and in subgroups of patients with T2DM, IFG, cirrhotic, and treatment experienced patients.


30402450 PMCID:
PMC6192081 DOI: 10.1155/2018/6095097

Friday, November 9, 2018

HCV in relation to cardiovascular conditions - Impact of direct-acting antiviral treatments?

Navigate this blog
Sift through current research articles on the extrahepatic manifestations of hepatitis C, in particular HCV in relation to cardiovascular conditions.

World J Gastroenterol. Nov 7, 2018; 24(41): 4617-4621
Published online Nov 7, 2018. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v24.i41.4617

Editorial 
Chronic hepatitis C, atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease: What impact of direct-acting antiviral treatments?
Luigi Elio Adinolfi, Luca Rinaldi, Riccardo Nevola


Abstract
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is associated with extrahepatic manifestations, among these there is an increased risk of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease as well as an increased cardiovascular mortality. Several direct and indirect HCV pro-atherogenic mechanisms have been proposed. HCV lives and replicates within carotid plaques, promoting a local environment of pro-atherogenic factors. In addition, it causes conditions such as insulin resistance, diabetes, hepatic steatosis, cryoglobulinemia and endotoxinemia that are associated with the development of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. Therapeutic regimens based on direct-acting antiviral agents (DAA) are currently available with high efficacy in HCV clearance and improvement of liver disease, but does HCV eradication also improve atherosclerosis and the risk of cardiovascular disease? Recently, a multi-center study has shown that elimination of HCV improves carotid atherosclerosis. Two studies have shown that DAA treatments significantly reduce the risk of cardiovascular events. Several studies have assessed the impact of HCV clearance on pro-atherosclerosis metabolic conditions showing improvement in cardiovascular risk biomarkers, disappearance or improvement of insulin resistance, reduction of risk of developing diabetes and improvement of glycemic control. There are also evidences that HCV clearance promotes the recovery of cytokines and inflammatory markers associated with atherosclerosis and the disappearance of cryoglobulinemia. Available data show that clearance of HCV by DAAs is associated with an improvement in atherosclerosis and metabolic and immunological conditions that promote the development of cardiovascular disease. However, the data are not sufficient to allow definitive conclusions and further studies will be needed to definitively clarify the impact of HCV clearance on atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease.


Direct and indirect factors considered responsible for development of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease in chronic hepatitis C patients and the possible effect of hepatitis C virus clearance by direct-acting antiviral agents on cardiovascular outcomes. DAAs: Direct-acting antiviral agents; IR: Insulin resistance; OXS: Oxidative stress; LPS: Lipopolysaccharide (endotoxinemia). 

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Knowledge Checkup: Hepatitis C - Test yourself on both the basics and the latest information

Perspective > Medscape 
Find how much you know about hepatitis C, or acquire more knowledge by taking an eight part HCV quiz launched this week over at Medscape; Knowledge Checkup: Hepatitis C. In addition, check out; Fast Five Quiz: Influenza, also recently published. Although each quiz is aimed at physicians, patients may find the information beneficial as well.
*Free registration may be required

Knowledge Checkup: Hepatitis C
Praveen K. Roy, MD Disclosures
November 06, 2018 
Hepatitis C is an infection caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV) that attacks the liver and leads to inflammation. The World Health Organization estimates that about 71 million people globally have chronic hepatitis C, with approximately 399,000 dying annually from this infection, primarily due to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Test yourself on both the basics and the latest information on this condition.


Fast Five Quiz: Influenza 
Michael Stuart Bronze, MD Disclosures
November 06, 2018 
Influenza, one of the most common infectious diseases, is a highly contagious airborne disease that occurs in seasonal epidemics and manifests as an acute febrile illness with variable degrees of systemic symptoms, ranging from mild fatigue to respiratory failure and death. Influenza causes significant loss of workdays, human suffering, and mortality. The World Health Organization estimates that worldwide annual influenza epidemics result in about 3-5 million cases of severe illness and about 250,000-500,000 deaths. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that flu-associated deaths in the United States ranged from about 3000 to 49,000 annually between 1976 and 2006. During the 2017-2018 flu season, 900,000 people were hospitalized and 80,000 died in the United States.

Are you prepared for another flu season? Test yourself on essential core components of influenza and refresh your knowledge of best practices with this quick quiz.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Liver Cancer After Treatment For Hepatitis C


Page updated: November 2018

Liver Cancer After Treatment For Hepatitis C
Research demonstrates that while SVR markedly reduced liver-related complications and liver cancer, some long-term risk for liver cancer remained in those who were cured of Hepatitis C. But after direct-acting antiviral therapy does the risk of developing liver cancer increase?

This page offers an index of links to current data investigating the possible risk of developing liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma, or HCC) during and after direct-acting antiviral therapy in patients with hepatitis C.

November 2018
Nov 6, 2018
Kinoshita MN, et al. J Hepatol. 2018;doi:10.1016/j.jhep.2018.09.029.
Hepatocellular carcinoma recurrence rates and patterns did not differ between patients who underwent interferon-based antiviral therapy for hepatitis C and those who received direct-acting antiviral therapy, according to a recently published study. Free registration required 

October 2018
Research continues to invalidate link between DAA treatment, liver cancer

August 2018
Aug 4, 2018
Direct Antiviral Therapy of Hep C May Not Boost Hepatocellular-Carcinoma Risk
Treatment of hepatitis C (HCV) with direct-acting antiviral agents does not appear to increase the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in individuals with cirrhosis, researchers from France report.
Reuters Health Information, August 2018

June 2018
June 28, 2018
Washington—Eradication of chronic infection with the hepatitis C virus with the new class of antiviral agents is associated with a 71% reduction in the risk for de novo liver cancer, according to a large retrospective cohort study involving the Veterans Affairs health care system. The findings should provide some assurance for patients taking direct-acting antivirals (DAAs), according to lead study author George Ioannou, BMBCh, MS, the director of hepatology at Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System, in Seattle.

June 27, 2018
Should we cure HCV in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma while treating cancer?

Syed T, Fazili J, Ali I, et al. (June 19, 2018)
Hepatocellular Carcinoma Occurrence and Recurrence in Hepatitis C-infected Patients Treated with Direct-acting Antivirals.
Cureus 10(6): e2843. doi:10.7759/cureus.2843
This work was presented as poster presentation at Digestive Disease Week 2018.

June 15 2018
Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics
Direct-acting Antiviral Treatment for Hepatitis C Virus Infection and Risk of Incident Liver Cancer
Does DAA-based HCV treatment reduce the risk of incident liver cancer compared to untreated HCV or interferon-based treatment?

May 2018
May 12, 2018
Nature reviews gastroenterology & hepatology
HCV therapy and risk of liver cancer recurrence: who to treat?
Article shared and download by Henry E. Chang on Twitter

May 4, 2018
This large real-life study proves that the efficacy of DAA in cirrhotic patients is not impaired by successfully treated HCC.

April 2018
April 21, 2018
Editorial
Hepatocellular carcinoma as a consequence of hepatitis C direct-acting anti-virals-the great urban myth of hepatology
Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2018 May;47(10):1418-1419. doi: 10.1111/apt.14634.

April 17, 2018
Does interferon-free therapy for hepatitis C after curative treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma lead to unexpected recurrences of HCC?
PLOS ONE | https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0194704

April 11, 2018
New At Healio: 8 reports on liver cancer outcomes with HCV, DAA therapy

April 5, 2018
Hepatitis C - Interferon-free therapy did not increase the risk of liver cancer
LAY SUMMARY: We examined the risk of liver cancer among 857 patients with cirrhosis in Scotland who received hepatitis C antiviral therapy and achieved a cure. We compared the risk of first-time liver cancer in patients treated with the newest interferon-free regimens, to patients treated with interferon. After accounting for the different characteristics of these two treatment groups, we found no evidence that interferon-free therapy is associated with a higher risk of liver cancer.

Mar 19, 2018
Patients with hepatitis C who are successfully treated with direct-acting antiviral agents experience a dramatic reduction in their risk for liver cancer, new data show. However, the decrease is much lower for those diagnosed with cirrhosis before starting a DAA.

Mar 13, 2018
Persistence of hepatocellular carcinoma risk in hepatitis C patients with a response to IFN & cirrhosis

Stagnation of fibrosis regression is associated with a high risk for HCC after SVR

Mar 3, 2018

Feb 12, 2018
Hepatocellular carcinoma - Updated and evidence-based review
Alejandro Forner, MD, MD Alejandro Forner
Published: 04 January 2018
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)30010-2

Full Text
Hepatocellular carcinoma appears frequently in patients with cirrhosis. Surveillance by biannual ultrasound is recommended for such patients because it allows diagnosis at an early stage, when effective therapies are feasible. The best candidates for resection are patients with a solitary tumour and preserved liver function. Liver transplantation benefits patients who are not good candidates for surgical resection, and the best candidates are those within Milan criteria (solitary tumour ≤5 cm or up to three nodules ≤3 cm). Image-guided ablation is the most frequently used therapeutic strategy, but its efficacy is limited by the size of the tumour and its localisation. Chemoembolisation has survival benefit in asymptomatic patients with multifocal disease without vascular invasion or extrahepatic spread. Finally, sorafenib, lenvatinib, which is non-inferior to sorafenib, and regorafenib increase survival and are the standard treatments in advanced hepatocellular carcinoma. This Seminar summarises the scientific evidence that supports the current recommendations for clinical practice, and discusses the areas in which more research is needed....

Future perspectives
In the past 10 years, treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma has evolved considerably. Nowadays, patients with hepatocellular carcinoma can benefit from effective options that improve their survival whatever the evolutionary stage of disease at diagnosis. However, improvement can still be made in several areas. Prevention of the acquisition of the risk factors for development of hepatocellular carcinoma is the best strategy for decreasing mortality. The high efficacy of direct acting antivirals in elimination of chronic hepatitis C virus infection is expected to have an impact on the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma, but further information about disease evolution in the patients after viral cure needs to be collected.......

Article Downloaded & shared by @HenryEChang via Twitter.
View Article: https://jumpshare.com/v/La5WS4Mn8Uwpi927nbeU

December 2017
Healio - December 8, 2017
Liver cancer incidence after HCV therapy linked to risk factors, not treatment
Li DK, et al. Hepatol. 2017;doi:10.1002/hep.29707. 
Direct-acting antiviral treatment for hepatitis C did not correlate with an increased risk for hepatocellular carcinoma in a large cohort study of both treated and untreated patients with or without cirrhosis. Those with incident HCC after DAA treatment had higher risk factors at baseline. “There was no increased risk for HCC as a result of having received DAA therapy whatsoever,” Raymond T. Chung, PhD, director of Hepatology and Liver Center at Massachusetts General Hospital, told Healio Gastroenterology and Liver Disease. “The risk was related to their preexisting likelihood of developing HCC. The fact that HCC developed post-DAA, we think, is more likely to be an accident of timing than the idea that it's related to receipt of DAA — these persons were at risk for HCC whether they received DAAs or not.”

Innes H, et al. J Hepatol. 2017;doi:10.1016/j.jhep.2017.10.033.
Recently published data suggest that higher hepatocellular carcinoma incidence after sustained virologic response with interferon-free hepatitis C treatment correlates to patient baseline risk factors, such as age, Child-Turcotte Pugh score and prior treatment, rather than IFN-free therapy.

HCV Clearance Lowers Liver Cancer Risk by 70% no Matter Drug of Choice
Reaching sustained virologic response with direct-acting antivirals reduced the occurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma by 71%, but all treatments that cleared the virus saw a similar reduction in risk, according to a presenter at The Liver Meeting 2017.


November 2017
HCV Advocate – Direct-Acting Antiviral Treatment & Decrease a Incidence of Liver Cancer
The studies on this blog looked at treatment with DAAs to find out if curing hepatitis C (HCV) with DAAs improved HCV disease progression and reduced the risk of liver cancer.

October 2017
Oct 23, 2017
The Liver Meeting® 2017 - Vets with HCV Might Settle Cancer Controversy
In the largest cohort analyzed to date -- some 62,000 patients in the VA system -- there is no evidence that therapy with newer agents that act directly against the virus (DAAs) increases the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), according to George Ioannou, BMBCh, of the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle.

Oct 20, 2017
The Liver Meeting® - Direct‐Acting Antiviral Therapy Cuts Liver Cancer Risk By 71%
The study’s findings showed that DAA‐induced sustained virological response is associated with a 71 percent reduction in patients’ liver cancer risk, and showed treatment with DAAs is not associated with increased liver cancer risk compared to treatment with interferon.

Oct 16, 2017
Short-term risk of hepatocellular carcinoma after hepatitis C virus eradication following direct-acting anti-viral treatment
In conclusion, our data showed no evidence of an increased risk of de novo HCC or recurrence by patients treated with interferon-free SOF-based regimens. However, cirrhosis was strongly associated with the short-term development of HCC after HCV eradication. Moreover, our findings underscore the fact that the serum EOT-AFP level is a useful marker for predicting de novo HCC for cirrhotic patients and that close HCC surveillance should be required for patients with a past history of HCC, especially for patients treated with noncurative procedures. Going forward, further studies will be required to elucidate the risk of HCC development over the long-term.....

Oct 3, 2017
HCV Treatment Not Associated with Liver Cancer, New Evidence Suggests
Kenneth Bender
An assessment of over 62,000 patients treated for hepatitis C (HCV) revealed no evidence to support the suggestion that direct acting antiviral (DAA) agents promote recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and found instead that successful treatment with or without DAAs is associated with reduced risk of HCC.

September 2017
Sep 18, 2017
Coverage OncLive - 2017 International Liver Cancer Association Annual Conference
Study Shows DAAs Are Not Associated With Increased HCC Recurrence Risk
Angelica Welch
Published Online: Monday, Sep 18, 2017
Direct acting antivirals (DAA) are a novel and completely oral hepatitis C therapy that is associated with a high response rate. DAAs are used in most patients being treated for hepatitis C, including those with decompensated cirrhosis.

Sep 12, 2017
Full Text Article Provided by NATAP
"Most HCV-infected patients in the United States will undergo DAA-based antiviral treatment in the next few years and the vast majority of them will achieve SVR. Our results suggest that DAA-induced SVR is associated with a 71% reduction in HCC risk (AHR 0.29, 95% CI 0.23-0.37) compared to treatment failure. The reduction in HCC risk associated with SVR was similar irrespective of whether SVR was achieved by DAA-ONLY, DAA+IFN or IFN-ONLY regimens. This suggests that eradication of HCV reduces HCC risk independently of how it is achieved. In contrast to prior reports that suggested an increased HCC risk in patients treated with DAAs[[3], [7]], we found that receipt of DAA-ONLY antiviral treatment was not associated with increased risk of HCC when compared to receipt of IFN-ONLY antiviral treatment.....We found no evidence that treatment with DAAs was associated with increased risk of HCC compared to treatment with IFN.

Sept 5, 2017
Risk for hepatocellular carcinoma after HCV antiviral therapy with DAAs: case closed?
Several studies of patients treated with interferon -based therapy nicely documented that the risk for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was markedly lower in patients who achieved SVR compared to those without SVR. 5-7 As a result, it was naturally assumed that with higher cure rates with DAAs, cancer rates would start to decline. It was therefore surprising and unsettling in 2016 to see a series of reports of unexpectedly high rates of ‘early’ HCC recurrence after ‘curative’ therapy as well as higher than expected rates of de novo HCC in patients who achieved SVR with DAAs.
PDF Full Text Article - Provided by @HenryEChang via Twitter

August 2017
Aug 15, 2017
How Do Direct-Acting Antivirals for HCV Affect HCC Risk?
The latest data on the controversial hepatitis C-hepatocellular carcinoma treatment link are examined.

Aug 10, 2017
The risks of hepatocellular carcinoma development after HCV eradication are similar between patients treated with peg-interferon plus ribavirin and direct-acting antiviral therapy
The risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development is reduced following viral elimination by interferon therapy in chronic hepatitis C patients. However, the risk in patients treated with interferon-free direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) is unknown. We evaluated chronic hepatitis C patients who achieved viral eradication by pegylated-interferon plus ribavirin (PEG-IFN/RBV, n = 244) or daclatasvir plus asunaprevir (DCV/ASV, n = 154) therapy...

Aug 4, 2017
Liver cancer, mortality risks decrease with SVR after direct-acting antivirals
Patients who achieved sustained virologic response after direct-acting antiviral treatment also had significantly lower all-cause mortality and lower incident rates of…

July 2017
July 26, 2017
Medscape
With Hepatitis C Virus on the Run, Meet the New Challenge: Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Significant advances in the clinical practice of hepatology were addressed during this year's Digestive Disease Week. This review focuses on the concerns related to the apparent increase in the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

July 16
Hepatitis C virus eradication with direct antiviral agents and liver cancer recurrence: Is the best the enemy of the good? Antiviral therapy has long been perceived as an adjuvant treatment modality worth to be offered to patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection after successful removal of a hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), an approach dating more than two decades since interferon was first employed to treat non-A, non-B hepatitis.

July 10
DAAs do not affect HCC risk, SVR reduces risk
July 10, 2017
Recently published data showed a link between sustained virologic response and a reduced risk for hepatocellular carcinoma among patients treated with direct-acting…

July 3
Sustained response to direct-acting HCV antivirals tied to lower HCC risk
July 3, 2017
by Marilynn Larkin
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - A sustained virologic response to direct-acting antiviral treatment of hepatitis C (HCV) is associated with a “considerable” reduction in the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), researchers say. Dr. Fasiha Kanwal of Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas and colleagues analyzed data on 22,500 HCV patients (mean age 62) from 129 Veterans Health Administration hospitals who filled more than one prescription of sofosbuvir, simeprevir, ledipasvir, a combination of paritaprevir/ritonavir or ombitasvir and dasabuvir, and daclatasvir in 2015.

June 2017
June 26, 2017
Challenges in Treatment of Hepatitis C among Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma

June 3, 2017
Medscape Coverage from the International Liver Congress (ILC) 2017
Navigating the Hep C Treatment and Cancer Risk Minefield

May 2017
May 26
Hepatocellular carcinoma and direct- acting antivirals: A never ending story?
Vincenza Calvaruso* andAntonio Craxì Version of Record online: 24 MAY 2017 DOI: 10.1111/liv.13421
Liver International
Volume 37, Issue 6, pages 812–814, June 2017

Key Points
• The benefit of SVR is higher in patients without clinically significant portal hypertension
• HCC occurrence in patients with compensated cirrhosis is comparable to historical controls of patients who achieved SVR after interferon-based therapy.
• Patients who achieve SVR with DAAs had a lower risk of developing liver cancer than those patients whose HCV infection was not cured.
• Data available on patients with previous HCC do not show an increased risk of HCC recurrence and report a comparable rate of reappearance of cancer among DAA-treated and untreated patients.

Full Text

Link Provided By
Henry E. Chang via Twitter

May 26
Summary Of  Available Data:
New Hep C Treatment Not Linked to Liver Cancer
Contrary to some earlier research, most recent studies see no association between response to DAAs and HCC

Do HCV DAAs Increase HCC Recurrence Risk or Not?
Does the administration of direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy increase a patient’s risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) recurrence?

Direct-acting-antivirals (DAA) can cure patients of the life-threating hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, with cure rates exceeding 95%. However, questions have been raised about the long-term consequences of curing patients with DAAs, including a potential link between DAA treatment and the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

Improved survival of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and compensated HCV-related cirrhosis who attained SVR
Few studies examined the outcome of patients with HCV-related cirrhosis who developed hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The relative weight as determinant of death for cancer versus endstage-liver-disease (ESLD) and the benefit of HCV eradication remain undefined. This multicenter, retrospective analysis evaluates overall survival (OS), rate of decompensation and tumor recurrence in compensated HCC patients treated with IFN according to HCV status since HCC diagnosis.

Of Interest
HCC in presence of HCV decreases cure rate in DAA treatment
Patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and hepatitis C were less likely to achieve sustained virologic response while receiving direct-acting antiviral therapy compared with patients without HCC, according to results of a retrospective study.

International Liver Congress
April 21,2017
Direct-acting antivirals for hepatitis C not linked to higher liver cancer risk in most studies
People with hepatitis C who take treatment with direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) do not appear to have a higher risk of developing liver cancer compared to those treated with interferon, and the seemingly higher rates seen in some studies are attributable to risk factors such as older age and more advanced liver disease, according to a set of studies presented on Thursday at the International Liver Congress in Amsterdam. The congress is the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL).

April 20, 2017
#ILC 2017: Is direct-acting antiviral therapy for Hepatitis C associated with an increased risk of liver cancer? The debate continues
Eight studies being presented at The International Liver Congress™ 2017 demonstrate contrasting evidence on the potential link between direct-acting antiviral treatment for Hepatitis C and liver cancer

Commentary on this study
Hepatitis C Patients At No Elevated Risk of Developing HCC Following DAA Compared To Interferon
Patients were at no elevated risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) after achieving sustained virologic response (SVR) following treatment with direct-acting antiviral therapy (DAA) for hepatitis C compared to interferon therapy, according to results of a meta-analysis reported at the 2017 International Liver Congress (ILC).

Timing of DAA therapy and HCC response may impact recurrence rate
April 20, 2017
AMSTERDAM — Unexpectedly high hepatocellular carcinoma recurrence rates were reported among patients who achieved sustained virologic response after receiving direct-acting antiviral therapy, according to data presented at the International Liver Congress.
“This update further supports our findings about an unexpected high recurrence rate associated in time with DAA, but also exposes a more aggressive pattern of recurrence and faster tumor evolution,” Maria Reig, MD, of the Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer Group, Liver Unit, Hospital Clinic Barcelona, at the University of Barcelona, said in her presentation.

Liver International
April 20, 2017
Download PDF - Full Text
Direct-acting antiviral therapy decreases hepatocellular carcinoma recurrence rate in cirrhotic patients with chronic hepatitis C
Arrival of direct-acting antiviral (DAA) agents against hepatitis C virus (HCV) with high-sustained virological response (SVR) rates and very few side effects has drastically changed the management of HCV infection. The impact of DAA exposure on hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) recurrence after a first remission in patients with advanced fibrosis remains to be clarified

Editorial - Healio
April 20, 2017
HCC After DAAs Requires More Study, but no Cause for Withheld Treatment
HCV Next, April 2017
As we continue to see the success of direct-acting antiviral therapy in treating hepatitis C virus, we must be aware of any potential complications from the underlying liver disease after successful treatment, especially hepatocellular carcinoma.

March 15, 2017
Full Text - Download PDF
Hepatitis C-related hepatocellular carcinoma in the era of new generation antivirals
Abstract
Hepatitis C virus infection is a major cause of hepatocellular carcinoma worldwide. Interferon has been the major antiviral treatment, yielding viral clearance in approximately half of patients. New direct-acting antivirals substantially improved the cure rate to above 90%. However, access to therapies remains limited due to the high costs and under-diagnosis of infection in specific subpopulations, e.g., baby boomers, inmates, and injection drug users, and therefore, hepatocellular carcinoma incidence is predicted to increase in the next decades even in high-resource countries. Moreover, cancer risk persists even after 10 years of viral cure, and thus a clinical strategy for its monitoring is urgently needed. Several risk-predictive host factors, e.g., advanced liver fibrosis, older age, accompanying metabolic diseases such as diabetes, persisting hepatic inflammation, and elevated alpha-fetoprotein, as well as viral factors, e.g., core protein variants and genotype 3, have been reported. Indeed, a molecular signature in the liver has been associated with cancer risk even after viral cure. Direct-acting antivirals may affect cancer development and recurrence, which needs to be determined in further investigation.
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Feb 27, 2017
People with HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV) co-infection who are successfully treated for hepatitis C using interferon-free direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy do not appear to have an increased likelihood of developing hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), according to a study presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI 2017) this month in Seattle.

Accepted Manuscript
Gastroenterology Accepted Date: 23 January 2017
Genome-wide Association Study Identifies TLL1 Variant Associated With Development of Hepatocellular Carcinoma After Eradication of Hepatitis C Virus Infection

Media Coverage of this Article
Feb 22, 2017
Genetic variant linked to risk of liver cancer after hep C eradication
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the tolloid-like 1 (TLL1) gene is associated with the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) after eradication of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, researchers from Japan report.
“When we constructed different models for predicting HCC in patients with mild as opposed to advanced hepatic fibrosis by combining this TLL1 variant with other distinct risk factors, these proposed models including TLL1 variant could be useful for predicting the occurrence of HCC after achieving sustained virological response (SVR) in the clinical practice,” Dr. Yasuhito Tanaka from Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences told Reuters Health by email.
Continue reading...

Feb 8, 2017
High Rates of Hepatocellular Carcinoma After Hepatitis C Treatment
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Patients treated with direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related cirrhosis appear to have high rates of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

"If these findings are confirmed from other centers, studies are suggested to examine mechanisms of these findings," Dr. Ashwani Singal from University of Alabama at Birmingham told Reuters Health by email.

Some studies have shown unexpectedly high HCC recurrence rates after DAA therapy, whereas others have shown no such association.

Dr. Singal and colleagues examined the occurrence of de novo HCC in their retrospective study of 66 patients with HCV-related cirrhosis who received DAA between 2015 and 2016.

Typically, patients with HCV cirrhosis have an HCC incidence of 3%-5% per year, the researchers say.

But six of these patients (9.1%) developed HCC during or within six months after treatment, and two additional patients (3%) developed indeterminate liver lesions, according to their letter online February 1st in Gastroenterology.

They note that another study showed a reduced risk of HCC occurrence among DAA-treated patients who achieved sustained viral responses (SVR) versus those not achieving SVR, so they suggest prospective multicenter studies to confirm these findings.

"Be aware of this potential issue and consider more intensive HCC surveillance of HCV cirrhotics during and after HCV therapy," Dr. Singal concluded.

Dr. Gaetano Serviddio from University of Foggia, Italy, who has reported on the outcomes of DAA therapy, told Reuters Health by email, "DAAs have completely changed the prognosis of chronic hepatitis C patients who have a unique possibility to be cured definitively. To discover that such drugs have some tumor risks is particularly terrible. In any case, the number of events is small, and the data are not enough to support the hypothesis that the risk is directly related to the drugs."

"DAAs are safe and powerful drugs; millions of lives will be saved with such drugs," he said. "Studies should be supported to completely define patients at risk of HCC recurrence."
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/2lmDbXa
Gastroenterol 2017.

January 2017
In Press, Corrected Proof
Digestive and Liver Disease
Available online 21 January 2017
HCV clearance by direct antiviral therapy and occurrence/recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma: A “true-or-false game”
Three years ago, the new direct antiviral therapies (DAAs) were approved for HCV treatment and the scenario completely changed. The share of patients in whom eradication is obtained raised to over 90% [7], the limits in the stage of the disease that can be treated disappeared, but solid data on the long-term outcome of cirrhotics treated with these new drugs are lacking.

A totally unexpected, intriguing and somehow hard-to-believe report of an increased incidence of HCC with rapid recurrence after HCV eradication with DAAs was first presented at the 2016 EASL meeting and then published in the Journal of Hepatology.....
Continue to full text article...

2016
AASLD 2016 and International Liver Congress 2016
Two studies presented at The Liver Meeting® 2016, and research presented in April at the International Liver Congress 2016.

Patients With HCV Who Treated With Interferon-based Therapy  
We begin with a study presented at AASLD 2016; The impact of sustained virological response to HCV infection on long term risk of hepatocellular carcinoma: the BC Hepatitis Testers Cohort, that suggested patients achieving SVR were still at risk for hepatocellular carcinoma, more specifically older patients and those with cirrhosis, commentary on the study is available over at Healio; SVR post–interferon-based therapy reduces, not eliminates risk for HCC, below is a summary of the study followed by slides @ NATAP 

Liver cancer risk reduced in patients cured of HCV
A large study found that the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma was reduced by 80% in people cured of HCV compared to those who were not cured.

This was a study of the entire population of people treated for HCV in British Columbia province, Canada, between 1990 and 2013. The study identified 8147 people treated with interferon-based regimens, 57% of whom were cured. Treated individuals were followed for a median of 5.6 years.

The liver cancer incidence was highest among those with cirrhosis who did not achieve a SVR (21 cases per 1000 patient-years of follow-up). In comparison, the liver cancer incidence was 6.4 per 1000 patient-years in those with cirrhosis who achieved SVR, 7.2 in those without cirrhosis who did not achieve SVR12 and 1.1 per 1000 patient-years in those without cirrhosis who achieved SVR12.

In a multivariable analysis liver cancer was associated with cirrhosis, age over 50 years, genotype three infection versus genotype one, alcohol consumption and being male in those who were not cured. In those who were cured of hepatitis C, only cirrhosis, age over 50 and being male were associated with an increased risk of liver cancer.

The researchers concluded that although curing HCV greatly reduces the risk of developing liver cancer, it does not eliminate the risk entirely. Older people and those with cirrhosis are at higher risk than others, underlining the importance of early diagnosis and treatment.

Reference
The impact of sustained virological response to HCV infection on long term risk of hepatocellular carcinoma: the BC Hepatitis Testers Cohort. Janjua NZ et al. The 67th Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, Boston 2016. Abstract 175
Summary Source - https://www.basl.org.uk/

Review Slides

Patients With HCV Who Treated With Oral DAAs
In a prospective study presented at the 2016 AASLD; Incidence and pattern of "de novo" hepatocellular carcinoma in HCV patients treated with oral DAAs, reported that treatment with direct-acting antiviral therapy did not increase the risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with HCV, but patients with advanced liver disease should continue to be monitored for liver cancer after treatment, here is the AASLD press release, followed by slides @ NATAP.

AASLD Press Release;
AASLD 2016 - Is There an Increased Risk of Cancer After Taking Direct-Acting Antiviral Medication?
BOSTON, Nov. 11, 2016
A new study presented this week at The Liver Meeting® — held by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases — found patients with hepatitis C who take direct-acting antiviral medication are at no higher risk for developing liver cancer than those who do not take the medication. However, they might be at an increased for more aggressive, infiltrative patterns of cancer, should they develop it.

"Data on clinical outcomes in cirrhotic patients with hepatitis C treated with direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) are still scanty and somehow controversial, and this is particularly true for development of a liver cancer, one of the most frequent and deadly complications of the disease," says Alfredo Alberti; professor of gastroenterology at University of Padova in Padova, Italy, and lead investigator in the study.

Recent studies have suggested the possibility of increased risk of developing liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma, or HCC) during and after DAA treatment in patients with hepatitis C (HCV). Dr. Alberti's team recently looked at the incidence of new cases of liver cancer among 3,075 HCV patients with advanced liver disease who were treated with DAAs. Almost 70 percent of the patients studied were men, and nearly 86 percent had cirrhosis (scarring of the liver). HCV genotypes one through four were all represented in the study, and patients with a past history of liver cancer were excluded.

All participants were treated with oral DAA therapy and monitored monthly. At the time of Dr. Alberti's team's analysis, patients had an average follow up of nearly 305 days from the time they started DAA therapy. During this period, the researchers found 41 patients had developed liver cancer, and the overall incidence (per 100 patient years) was 1.64.

Dr. Alberti's team further noted an incidence rate of 0.23 in patients without cirrhosis and of 1.93 in those with cirrhosis (1.93 for men and 1.94 for women). Incidence rates varied among HCV genotypes as well, with HCV-1 at the low end (1.70) and HCV-3 at the high end (2.44). Finally, cirrhotic patients with a Child-Pugh score of 'A' had an incidence rate of 1.64 and those with more advanced disease and a score of 'B' had a rate of 2.92.

"These rate incidences were not significantly different from those observed in historical control cohorts of similar patients from the same geographic area, not receiving antiviral therapy, indicating that the risk of developing HCC is not increased by oral DAAs, being closely dependent on stage of disease as in untreated cases," says Dr. Alberti.

Liver cancer was diagnosed four weeks after starting DAA therapy in three patients, at week eight in three patients, week 12 in six patients, between week 12 and 24 in thirteen patients, and after treatment ended in sixteen patients. Fifty percent of patients who developed liver cancer developed a single nodular cancer with a typical vascular pattern, while 50 percent had a more aggressive pattern. Finally, 28 out of the 41 patients who developed cancer were successfully cured of HCV (reaching a sustained virological response at 12 weeks), while the remaining 13 relapsed.

In different analyses of the data, Dr. Alberti's team found elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count to be associated with liver cancer risk, while gender, age, HCV genotype and DAA regimen were not. The best baseline predictor of liver cancer risk was APRI scores (which calculate scarring in the liver). The researchers find the risk of developing liver cancer increased linearly by 10 percent at each one-point increase in APRI value.

"The results of this study, while confirming that DAAs treatment doesn't increase the overall risk of HCC, indicate that there is no pharmacological prevention of HCC even with successful antiviral therapy, at least during the first six to 12 months after initiation of treatment when microscopic and therefore initially invisible HCC foci might even be boosted in their growth as consequence of the profound immunological and molecular changes in the liver microenvironment following abrupt cessation of HCV replication," explains Dr. Alberti. "Therefore, it is mandatory that patients treated with DAAs with advanced liver disease should continue to be monitored for HCC."

This release contains updated data. Dr. Alberti will present these findings at AASLD's press conference in Room 313 at John B. Hynes Veterans Memorial Convention Center in Boston on Saturday, November 12 at 4pm. The study entitled "Incidence and pattern of "de novo" hepatocellular carcinoma in HCV patients treated with oral DAAs" will be presented by Antonietta Romano, MD in Ballroom A on Sunday, November 13 at 10am. The corresponding abstract (number 19) can be found in the journal, Hepatology – Special Issue: The 67th Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases: The Liver Meeting 2016.

View the slides @ NATAP Reported by Jules Levin
"Incidence and pattern of "de novo" hepatocellular carcinoma in HCV patients treated with oral DAAs"
Another look at both studies;  Incidence and pattern of `de novo` hepatocellular carcinoma in HCV patients treated with oral DAAs and The impact of sustained virological response to HCV infection on long term risk of hepatocellular carcinoma: the BC Hepatitis Testers Cohort.

Liver cancer risk reduced after hepatitis C treatment, but vigilance needed for aggressive cancers in months after treatment
Keith Alcorn
People who are cured of hepatitis C after a course of direct-acting antiviral treatment do not have a higher risk of developing liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma), and probably have a reduced risk, studies from Italy and Canada presented at The Liver Meeting this week in Boston have shown. However, Italian researchers also found that those people who did develop liver cancer during or shortly after antiviral treatment were more likely to develop an aggressive form of liver cancer, perhaps because of changes in immune surveillance in the liver as a result of treatment.

Patients With HCV And History Of Liver Cancer Who Treated With New Antivirals
As a reference point two studies presented in April at the International Liver Congress 2016 found; patients with a history of hepatocellular carcinoma have the highest risk of developing a tumor after direct-acting antiviral therapy, but new diagnoses were also reported. ​​Read the report; Liver Cancer Found in Hepatitis C Patients on New Antivirals provided below, or over at Medscape.

Liver Cancer Found in Hepatitis C Patients on New Antivirals
Kate Johnson
April 15, 2016
BARCELONA, Spain — In a surprising number of patients with hepatitis C and cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma develops within weeks of starting treatment with direct-acting antivirals, new research suggests.

"I do not think that direct-acting antivirals are directly responsible," said lead investigator Stefano Brillanti, MD, from the University of Bologna, Italy.

"The hypothesis is that immune surveillance may be reduced too rapidly," he told Medscape Medical News. "You have an immediate drop in viremia, but also attenuation of inflammation. I think inflammation is a bad thing in terms of hepatitis progression, but it may be a good thing in terms of controlling cancer."

The study by Dr Brillanti's team, presented here at the International Liver Congress 2016, suggests that patients with hepatitis C should be closely monitored after treatment with direct-acting antivirals. Two days earlier, a study conducted by a team from the University of Barcelona in Spain suggested the same thing (J Hepatol. Published online April 12, 2016).

Both studies indicate that patients with a history of hepatocellular carcinoma have the highest risk of developing a tumor after direct-acting antiviral therapy, but new diagnoses were also reported.

The EMA has extended the scope of its review of the six direct-acting antivirals approved for use in the European Union for the treatment of chronic hepatitis  C infection to include the risk for early liver cancer recurrence, the agency reported.

Tumor Risk
"Patients with previous hepatocellular carcinoma are, of course, at risk of recurrence anyway," Dr Brillanti said. "A 30% rate over 3 years from initial surgery or ablation is normal. What was surprising to us was that we were observing 4 cm lesions after 12 weeks."

The retrospective cohort study involved 344 consecutive patients with hepatitis C and cirrhosis who were treated with one or two direct-acting antivirals and followed for 24 weeks after therapy. Median age was 63 years.
In this cohort, 237 patients were infected with hepatitis C genotype 1, 191 had received previous antiviral treatment, and 59 had been successfully treated for hepatocellular carcinoma.

Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography and CT scans or MRIs were performed at baseline to exclude active hepatocellular carcinoma, and then again 12 and 24 weeks after treatment.
During the follow-up period, 26 of the 344 patients (7.6%) were diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma. This included 17 of the 59 patients previously treated for hepatocellular carcinoma, and nine of the 285 patients (3.2%) with no history of carcinoma.

There was no association between recurrence and hepatitis C genotype, direct-acting antiviral regimen, or treatment response for patients who did not develop hepatocellular carcinoma or for those who did. The sustained viral response rate at 12 weeks was 89% in the two groups.
For patients with a history of hepatocellular carcinoma, those who developed a recurrence were significantly younger than those who did not (56 vs 73 years), were more frequently treatment-experienced (88.2% vs 61.9%), and had more advanced liver fibrosis at baseline.

More patients who developed hepatocellular carcinoma during the follow-up period, regardless of history, had advanced cirrhosis than those who did not, indicated by a Child-Pugh class B score (26.9% vs 10.1%; P =.02). They also had more liver stiffness, indicated by a measure above 21.3 Kpa (61.5% vs 31.8%; P = .005), and fewer platelets at baseline (102.3 vs 124.4 × 1000/mm³; P = .02).

Second Study
In the Spanish study, all 58 hepatitis C patients had a history of hepatocellular carcinoma (with complete radiologic response), and all but three were cirrhotic at the start of direct-acting antiviral therapy. After a median follow-up of 5.7 months, the rate of tumor recurrence was 27.6%, with a median time to recurrence of 3.5 months. The sustained viral response rate at 12 weeks was 97.5%.

In their publication, the Spanish authors note that these findings "raise a concern about the benefits" of direct-acting antiviral therapy in the subgroup of hepatitis C patients with a history of hepatocellular carcinoma. Although the therapies "offer a major hope for current and future patients, we may face a drawback that may change these predictions in specific groups of patients," they point out.

Dr Brillanti said he is less concerned. "Clones of the hepatocellular carcinoma were present before the therapy," he pointed out, suggesting that direct-acting antivirals simply accelerated their inevitable progression. Either way, he said, an increased risk for hepatocellular carcinoma should not deter clinicians or patients from pursuing treatment with direct-acting antivirals when it is needed.

"This is a different cancer than elsewhere in oncology — it is a cancer within an advanced chronic disease — so the prognosis, the life expectancy, is related not only to the liver cancer but also to the liver disease and liver function," he explained. "If you don't treat these patients and ameliorate their liver function, and if hepatocellular carcinoma occurs, you have no chance of curing them. But if you ameliorate liver function and they develop hepatocellular carcinoma, you can cure it better because their improved liver function will allow an ablation."

This finding is "quite striking and unexpected, but we have to be cautious," said Laurent Castera, MD, PhD, from Hôpital Beaujon in Clichy, France, who is vice-secretary of the European Association for the Study of the Liver, and was not involved with the research.

"It is potentially worrying, but these are retrospective studies, with possible referral bias, and no long-term follow-up," he told Medscape Medical News.

Dr Brillanti reports receiving research grants from Gilead Sciences and being on the advisory board for Janssen and Gilead Sciences. Dr Castera reports serving on the speaker's bureau for Echosens.
International Liver Congress (ILC) 2016: Abstract LBP506. Presented April 14, 2016.
Source - Medscape

Feb 2017
Of Interest - In The News
Risk of liver cancer low in patients with cirrhosis, study finds
01 Feb 2017
The results of a study by researchers at The University of Nottingham suggest that the risk of liver cancer in patients with cirrhosis may be much lower than previously thought.

Liver cancer – or hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) – is one of the most serious complications of cirrhosis, or scarring of the liver, caused by long-term liver damage.

However, an analysis of health records, published in the academic journal Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, found that the 10-year incidence of HCC in UK patients with cirrhosis is actually only four per cent, or lower.

Joe West, Professor of Epidemiology in the University’s School of Medicine, led the study and believes that the results could better inform doctors on how best to focus resources for the benefit of patients with liver damage.

He said: “This very low incidence of HCC occurrence in people with cirrhosis caused by alcohol or of unknown origin suggests that surveillance for HCC among these groups is likely to benefit patients little.

“As surveillance incurs substantial cost, it is therefore unlikely to represent value for money for the NHS. There may well be other ways of spending this money that would benefit patients far more.”

Cirrhosis is caused by long-term damage to the liver, which leads to a build-up of scar tissue which replaces healthy tissue and eventually can result in liver failure.

The researchers identified more than 3,000 patients with cirrhosis of the liver using the UK’s General Practice Research Database between 1987 and 2006 and then cross-referenced this information with diagnoses of HCC on linked national cancer registries.

The study found that only 1.2 per cent of patients with alcoholic cirrhosis and 1.1 per cent of patients with cirrhosis of unknown cause will develop HCC within a decade. The highest 10-year incidence of HCC was among those with cirrhosis due to chronic viral hepatitis (four per cent).
http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/news/pressreleases/2017/january/risk-of-liver-cancer-low-in-patients-with-cirrhosis-study-finds.aspx

March 2017
Antiviral medication successful for treating HCV in hepatocellular carcinoma

Hepatocellular Carcinoma Decreases the Chance of Successful Hepatitis C Virus Therapy with Direct-Acting Antivirals
The new medications for hepatitis C have excellent cure rates. However, our study shows that in patients with both liver cancer and hepatitis C, they do not achieve these cure rates. Patients with liver cancer are almost 6 times more likely to fail hepatitis C treatment than patients without liver cancer

AGA Institute Clinical Practice Update: Care of Patients Who Have Achieved a Sustained Virologic Response (SVR) Following Antiviral Therapy for Chronic Hepatitis C Infection
Ira M. Jacobson M.D., Joseph K. Lim, M.D., and Michael W. Fried, M.D.
ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2017.03.018

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Abstract
Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is well-recognized as a common blood borne infection with global public health impact, affecting 3 to 5 million persons in the U.S. and over 170 million persons worldwide. Chronic HCV infection is associated with significant morbidity and mortality due to complications of liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Current therapies with all-oral directly acting antiviral agents (DAAs) are associated with high rates of sustained virologic response (SVR), generally exceeding 90%. SVR is associated with a reduced risk of liver cirrhosis, hepatic decompensation, need for liver transplantation, and both liver-related and all-cause mortality. However, a subset of patients who achieve SVR will remain at long-term risk for progression to cirrhosis, liver failure, HCC, and liver-related mortality. Limited evidence is available to guide clinicians on which post-SVR patients should be monitored versus discharged, how to monitor and with which tests, how frequently should monitoring occur, and for how long. In this clinical practice update, available evidence and expert opinion are used to generate best practice recommendations on the care of patients with chronic HCV who have achieved SVR.

Index
Assessment of HCV RNA after SVR12 has been attained
With the initiation of trials of DAA regimens, initially in combination with interferon and later without it, the attainment of SVR 12 weeks after completion of treatment replaced SVR24 as the primary endpoint, defined as undetectable HCV RNA on a highly sensitive PCR assay (lower limit of detection <12 IU/mL). This transition was based upon the rarity of relapse after follow up week 12, and it helped move the field ahead by shortening the intervals between successive trials in development programs (22). It has become apparent that late relapse beyond this time point is no more common, and perhaps less so, than it was after interferon-based therapy
Ongoing surveillance for hepatocellular carcinoma after SVR Is HCC risk after SVR exclusive to patients with advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis?
Can HCC surveillance ever be discontinued?
How should screening for, and management of, varices be affected by SVR?
Should patients be routinely monitored for regression of advanced fibrosis or
cirrhosis?
Recurrent HCC After SVR
Reinfection
Lifestyle Measures
Conclusions
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