The Week in Review: April 28 – May 11, 2018

Friday, May 11, 2018 News Recap: HBV: CADTH recommends that tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) be reimbursed for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. The CADTH Canadian Drug Expert Committee (CDEC) recommends that tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) be reimbursed for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B in adults with compensated liver disease, if the following condition is met: CONDITION: The drug plan cost of TAF should not exceed that of the lowest-cost prepar...

Biologic Psoriasis Therapies Pose Limited Risk for Hepatitis B Reactivation

A recent systematic review of the literature has confirmed that biologic therapies can reactivate hepatitis B virus (HBV) in patients with plaque psoriasis.  Although the study found that any prior HBV exposure was associated with the risk for viral reactivation, patients with chronic HBV were far more likely to experience reactivation than those with evidence of HBV exposure but without hepatitis. Antiviral prophylaxis greatly reduced the risk for viral r

The Week in Review: September 29 – October 6, 2017

Friday, October 6, 2017 News Recap: Liver Cancer Two studies on liver cancer in the news last week highlighted the global prevalence and causes of this terrible disease.  The first showed a direct correlation between excess weight and cancer occurrence (including liver cancer) – Cancers linked to excess weight make up 40% of all US diagnoses, study finds, while the second focussed on the global incidence of primary liver cancer. Hepatitis B virus wa...

Reactivation Rate of Hepatitis B in Inflammatory Arthritis Tx With DMARDs

It's not only DAAs than can reactivate HBV. In patients with inflammatory arthritis receiving disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), rates of hepatitis B (HBV) reactivation differ between those whose disease is resolved and those with chronic HBV infection. Findings from the systematic review and meta-analysis were published in Arthritis Care & Research (Hoboken). Patients with chronic HBV generally have a 5-fold to 8-fold higher risk for HBV

FDA Adds Boxed Warning to Hepatitis C Drugs, Warns of Hepatitis B Reactivation Risk

Safety Announcement The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning about the risk of hepatitis B virus (HBV) becoming an active infection again in any patient who has a current or previous infection with HBV and is treated with certain direct-acting antiviral (DAA) medicines for hepatitis C virus. In a few cases, HBV reactivation in patients treated with DAA medicines resulted in serious liver problems or death. As a result, we ar...

U.S.: Hepatitis C Treatment Panel Calls For Hepatitis B Testing

A new update to the guidelines for the treatment of hepatitis C recommends testing for the hepatitis B virus in all patients who are planning treatment with direct acting antiviral drugs. Hepatitis B (HBV) and C (HVC) are diseases caused by different viruses that can both start as acute infections but turn chronic in some people, eventually leading to life-threatening liver damage, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While there a

Japan’s PMDA reviews hep B risk link to hep C therapies

Japan's Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency (PMDA) is reviewing approved hepatitis C drugs in the country for links to a possible reactivation of the hepatitis B virus, which could result in label changes. In a notice last week, PMDA said that the review covers Gilead Sciences' ($GILD) Sovaldi (sofosbuvir) and Harvoni (ledipasvir and sofosbuvir) as well as AbbVie's ($ABBV) Viekirax (ombitasvir and paritaprevir and ritonavir), Bristol-Myers Squibb...