Send to

Choose Destination
J Hepatol. 2002 Jul;37(1):124-30.

Early hepatitis C viral kinetics correlate with long-term outcome in patients receiving high dose induction followed by combination interferon and ribavirin therapy.

Author information

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Portland, OR 97207, USA.



The majority of patients with genotype 1 do not respond to interferon (IFN) plus ribavirin. Limited data exist on the use of induction followed by combination therapy.


In this prospective study of 28 patients infected with genotype 1, randomization involved either daily or twice daily high dose IFN for 6 weeks, followed by standard therapy of 3 million units three times a week in combination with ribavirin for an additional 42 weeks. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA was quantitated before and frequently during treatment.


The best correlate of response was delta (the infected cell loss rate). Sixteen patients continued on the study because they had at least a 2 log drop in their HCV RNA levels by week 12; all but one were PCR negative for HCV RNA at 48 weeks, and 14 of these 16 patients continued to be PCR negative at 72 weeks. Both African-Americans in our trial failed to respond to therapy, and differences were evident during the induction phase.


This randomized study of induction IFN therapy followed by combination IFN plus ribavirin yielded the highest rate of sustained response (50%) reported to date in chronically HCV-infected patients with genotype 1. The predictive value of the infected cell loss rate needs to be evaluated prospectively in larger studies, particularly in patients receiving pegylated IFN.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center