Treatment of chronic hepatitis C (HCV) was based on Interferon alpha IFNa administration three times a week (tiw), but the efficacy of this schedule (evaluated as virological sustained response) was limited to less than 20% of patients. The combination of Ribavirin and IFN is known to be significantly more effective than IFN monotherapy in naive and relapser patients but it induces a sustained response only in 41% of patients and in less than 30% of patients infected with genotype 1. Several studies on IFN and viral kinetics suggested that daily administration of IFN may increase the sustained response rate. The development of pegylated IFNs, characterized by a long half life and weekly administrability, seems to induce a significant improvement in the treatment of chronic hepatitis particularly in combination with Ribavirin. In order to further improve the efficacy of treatment in chronic hepatitis C (HCV) many controlled clinical trials evaluating Amantadine, Micophenolate, a1 Thymosin, Maxamine (in combination with IFN or pegylated IFN), Protease, Helicase, Polymerase inhibitors, Ribozymes and anti-sense olygonucleotides, and Interleukin 10 are in progress. Finally anti-HCV vaccine development seems to be very promising.
Keywords: hepatitis c, ifnx, viral kinetics, hcv, anti-hcv, pegylated interferon
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