Efficacy of Interferon-Free Therapies for Chronic Hepatitis C: A Systematic Review of All Randomized Clinical Trials
Background and Objectives
Second-generation direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) have recently arisen as more effective and safer treatments for chronic hepatitis C. These drugs can be combined into treatments without interferon (IFN), and are therefore called IFN-free therapies.
The objective of this study systematic review was to evaluate the efficacy of IFN-free therapies for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C, and thus increase the clinical evidence for these therapies.
A systematic review was conducted in accordance with Cochrane Collaboration recommendations. A search was performed in six different electronic databases using ‘clinical trials’, ‘hepatitis C’ and ‘interferon-free’ as the main descriptors, and studies that conformed to the inclusion criteria had their data extracted, including study information, baseline characteristics, and efficacy outcomes (sustained virologic response, rapid virologic response, and virologic failure).
Sixty-four randomized clinical trials including 15 different therapies were included in a total of 15,731 patients infected with the hepatitis C virus, mostly with genotype 1, and mainly treated for 12 or 24 weeks. The sustained virologic response rate after 12 weeks of treatment was approximately 89%, while the virologic failure rate was below 5%.
Second-generation DAAs presented several advantages: virologic response values higher than the average achieved by previous IFN-based therapies, reduced treatment duration, and the possibility of different combinations of therapies to meet patient needs. Thus, IFN-free therapies appear to be valuable alternatives for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C.
KeywordsChronic Hepatitis Sustained Virological Response Virologic Failure Sustained Virologic Response Rate Telaprevir
Compliance with Ethical Standards
No funding was received for this work.
Conflict of interest
Vinicius L. Ferreira, Fernanda S. Tonin, Nayara A. Assis Jarek, Yohanna Ramires and and Roberto Pontarolo declare no relevant conflicts of interest.
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