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J Hepatol. 1994 Jul;21(1):4-11.

Prediction of sustained remission of chronic hepatitis C after a 12-month course of alfa interferon.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Clínica Universitaria, Universidad de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain.


alpha-Interferon therapy normalizes aminotransferase levels in approximately 50% of the patients with chronic hepatitis C, but post-therapy relapses are common and predictive factors of sustained response remain largely unknown. We retrospectively assessed several parameters as predictors of sustained remission after a 12-month course of lymphoblastoid alpha-interferon: the Knodell histological activity index, serum levels of procollagen type III peptide, serum HCV-RNA, anti-alpha-interferon antibodies, and anti-HCV antibodies (C-100-3), all at month 12. Thirty-seven patients were studied. Fourteen patients were non-responders (38%), 15 patients experienced a sustained response (40.5%) and eight patients responded similarly but relapsed after alpha-interferon withdrawal (21.5%). A decrease in the histological activity index above 5, normalization of procollagen type III peptide levels (< 12 ng/ml) and the absence of viremia after treatment were all significantly associated with a sustained response (p = 0.008, p = 0.007 and p = 0.037, respectively). Anti-interferon antibodies were detected in only one non-responder patient. Anti-C-100-3 antibodies became undetectable at month 12 in 5 of the 15 sustained responders. The best prediction of sustained response was obtained from the three variables independent of multivariate analysis according to the following equation: F = 0.872 + 0.067 x K (decrease of histological index) -0.052 x P (procollagen type III peptide levels at month 12) -0.28 x R (HCV-RNA at month 12; R = 2 when present and R = 1 when absent). A score higher than 0 predicted sustained remission with a 100% sensitivity and specificity in this series of patients.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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