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How To Tell If A Hepatitis-C-virus-infected Patient Will Respond To Therapy

Date:
December 22, 2008
Source:
Journal of Clinical Investigation
Summary:
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) causes hepatitis and liver cancer. Current treatments are expensive, have severe side effects, and fail in about half the patient. Researchers have now developed an approach that predicted the outcome of therapy in individuals infected with HCV, raising the possibility of a test to predict treatment response and reduce treatment failures, which could save a great deal of pain and expense for HCV-infected patients.

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) causes hepatitis and increased risk of developing liver cancer. Current treatments are expensive, have severe side effects, and fail in about half the patients treated.

However, the Virahep-C Study Group, at Saint Louis University, has now developed an approach that predicted the outcome of therapy, raising the possibility of a test to predict treatment response and reduce treatment failures, something that could save a great deal of pain and expense for HCV-infected patients.

The research team, led by John Tavis and Rajeev Aurora, used a method known as covariation analysis to analyze variation in the genome-wide amino-acid sequence of viruses isolated from HCV-infected patients before they underwent treatment.

Using this approach, networks of covariation were found to associate with specific responses of the patients to treatment.

The authors suggest that the data has implications for the development of a test to predict how an individual infected with HCV will respond to treatment and might help identify targets for new antiviral drugs.

In an accompanying commentary, Thomas Oh and Charles Rice, at Rockefeller University, New York, discuss further the therapeutic implications of these data.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Clinical Investigation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Genome-wide hepatitis C virus amino acid covariance networks can predict response to antiviral therapy in humans. Journal of Clinical Investigation, Dec 22, 2008

Cite This Page:

Journal of Clinical Investigation. "How To Tell If A Hepatitis-C-virus-infected Patient Will Respond To Therapy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221449.htm>.
Journal of Clinical Investigation. (2008, December 22). How To Tell If A Hepatitis-C-virus-infected Patient Will Respond To Therapy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221449.htm
Journal of Clinical Investigation. "How To Tell If A Hepatitis-C-virus-infected Patient Will Respond To Therapy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221449.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

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