Saturday, April 12, 2014

New Hepatitis C Drug Claims Curing 95% Clinical Trial Patients

A new drug formulated by German and US researchers for the treatment of hepatitis C has been reported to achieve 95% success rate in clinical trials. The drug termed ABT-450 has been reported to be more effective than the earlier interferon-based therapy, even by patients who failed to respond to earlier treatments. This new drug therapy takes only three months as against the interferon-therapy which took more than a year.

This drug has been developed by the manufacturer AbbVie, who financed the study carried out by German doctors. The New England Journal of Medicine published the details of the study online on April 10. The study results were also presented to the annual meeting of the Study of the Liver in London. The drug has been claimed as a important breakthrough in the treatment of hepatitis C, which affects more than 3 million people in the US and about 200,000 in UK. Hepatitis C infections lead to liver cancer and cirrhosis. This infection can be passed on by infected people through body fluids and blood. The practice of taking drugs and sharing needles has been strongly criticized in this regard by medical experts.

 This new oral drug was tested on 380 people at various locations in Spain, England, Germany and US. Out of 208 patients, 191 were reported to be completely cured after 12 weeks. By 24 weeks, the success rate went well above 96%, according to the info here.

 The cost of the new treatment, however, hasn’t been clarified as of yet. But it is expected to remain quite high, in which case, the drug may not be available to many of the patients in need of it.

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