Therapy of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection may prevent progression to cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma and end-stage liver disease. The cornerstone of treatment has long been standard IFN-alpha, the use of which was associated with a sustained biochemical and viral response in only a small proportion of patients. More recently, the success of interferon-based regimens has substantially improved due to the combination with the guanosine analogue ribavirin and to the advent of pegylated interferon formulations. However, even the most up-to-date regimens fail to cure the infection in many cases and are limited by side effects and high costs. A better understanding of the HCV genomic organisation, the elucidation of the three-dimensional structures of virally encoded enzymes and the recent development of a HCV-replicon system in human hepatoma (Huh-7) cells have led to significant advances in the development of new antiviral compounds, many of which are under evaluation in clinical trials. The aim of this review is to trace a brief overview of the progress made by interferon-based treatments for hepatitis C since their introduction in the early 1990s, and to highlight the results of recent clinical studies concerning new and emerging drugs.

Antiviral treatment of hepatitis C

TONIUTTO, Pierluigi;
2006

Abstract

Therapy of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection may prevent progression to cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma and end-stage liver disease. The cornerstone of treatment has long been standard IFN-alpha, the use of which was associated with a sustained biochemical and viral response in only a small proportion of patients. More recently, the success of interferon-based regimens has substantially improved due to the combination with the guanosine analogue ribavirin and to the advent of pegylated interferon formulations. However, even the most up-to-date regimens fail to cure the infection in many cases and are limited by side effects and high costs. A better understanding of the HCV genomic organisation, the elucidation of the three-dimensional structures of virally encoded enzymes and the recent development of a HCV-replicon system in human hepatoma (Huh-7) cells have led to significant advances in the development of new antiviral compounds, many of which are under evaluation in clinical trials. The aim of this review is to trace a brief overview of the progress made by interferon-based treatments for hepatitis C since their introduction in the early 1990s, and to highlight the results of recent clinical studies concerning new and emerging drugs.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11390/694014
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