The Week in Review: April 28, 2017 – May 5, 2017

Friday, May 5, 2017 News Recap Canada Great news from Nova Scotia: Expanded access to and coverage for treatment of chronic hepatitis C is now available under the provincial Pharmacare plan, similar to the new arrangements in BC, Alberta, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Quebec.  The drugs covered are: Epclusa, Daklinza, Sunvepra, Zepatier, Harvoni and Sovaldi. You can read the Nova Scotia Pharmacare Formulary Updates here (Nova Scotia Lists EPCLUSA™ on P...

Response from Dr. Grebely concerning DAAs & HCC

Below is a letter from Jason Grebely, PhD, Associate Professor The Kirby Institute, UNSW Sydney, concerning a news item we shared from ILC 2017 reporting on what the authors believed was a relationship between DAAs and HCC Higher Risk of HCC Recurrence Observed Following DAA Therapy for Hepatitis C.  We really appreciate getting feedback from medical professionals on these matters because, although we do our best to present "the truth," sometimes it's a bi

The Week in Review: April 21, 2017 – April 28, 2017

Friday, April 28, 2017 News Recap Canada New Canadian Testing Guidelines Released: On April 24, 2017, The Canadian Task Force on Preventative Health Care (CTFPHC) published its HCV Screening Guidelines in the CMAJ. The guidelines make the recommendation to continue screening those with known risk factors, but does not include a recommendation to screen the age cohort born between 1945-1975, which has been recommended by many of Canada’s top liver sp...

Generic hepatitis C drugs continue to produce high cure rates

Treatment with generic versions of direct-acting antiviral drugs continues to produce similar cure rates to those reported in clinical trials, Dr James Freeman reported last week at the International Liver Congress in Amsterdam. Dr James Freeman, an Australian general practitioner based in Hobart, Tasmania, was reporting on the outcomes of people with hepatitis C who imported generic versions of direct-acting antivirals manufactured in India and elsewhere

AbbVie takes aim at Gilead and BMS with 8-week hep C treatment

AbbVie is aiming to steal sales from hep C drugs from Gilead and BMS with a new combination offering a shorter, eight-week treatment for the most difficult-to-treat form of the disease. Results presented at the International Liver Congress (ILC) in Amsterdam showed 95% of genotype 3 patients on its pan-genotypic regimen of glecaprevir+pibrentasvir were free of disease, 12 weeks after completing an eight-week treatment course. The results were based on

MicroRNA-34a as a Therapeutic Target in HCC

MicroRNA-34a, one of the most documented tumor suppressor microRNAs, is being evaluated as a potential therapeutic target in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in a study being presented at the 2017 International Liver Congress. Results from a study of microRNA-34a and natural killer (NK) cells suggest that microRNA-34a could have a role in regulating cytotoxicity and development of the effector NK cells and their target cells. Lead author Amira Abdelhamid

Independent Prognostic Markers of HCC Recurrence Identified

Higher levels of hepatocytes positive for pERK immunostaining and greater microvascular invasion have emerged as independent prognostic factors of recurrence in patients following sorafenib (Nexavar) treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), researchers reported at the 2017 International Liver Congress in Amsterdam. “The is an unmet need for adjuvant treatment for HCC since HCC recurrence after resection or ablation occurs in 70% of patients within 5 y

Higher Risk of HCC Recurrence Observed Following DAA Therapy for Hepatitis C

In updated results presented at the 2017 International Liver Congress, Spanish researchers raised a red flag regarding observations of unexpected higher rates of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) recurrence following treatment with direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Maria Reig MD, PhD, presented data updating results published last year evaluating increased rates of tumor recurrence in patients following successful treatme

ILC 2017: Investigational dose of oral interferon-free treatment can cure hepatitis C in children

The study evaluated the use of a direct-acting antiviral treatment in children aged 6 to 11, for whom the standard of care has been pegylated interferon plus ribavirin April 21, 2017, Amsterdam, The Netherlands: A study presented today that evaluated an investigational dosage of once-daily ledipasvir 45 mg/sofosbuvir 200 mg (LDV/SOF) in children aged six to 11 years infected with the Hepatitis C virus (HCV), found that 99% of children (n=89/90) had undete

The Week in Review: April 14, 2017 – April 21, 2017

Friday, April 21, 2017 News Recap Canada Well the last report from the final leg of HepCBC’s Road Trip to BC’s Interior 2017 is in. What a journey!! – and so much work!! This report focusses on events in the Kootenay region of BC, and I’m really impressed at how much Rosemary and Cheryl were able to accomplish!  Amazing. Awareness of hepatitis C in BC’s more remote and small communities is growing and this is due to the hard work of the many advocat...