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Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2006 Apr 15;23(8):1171-8.

48 weeks pegylated interferon alpha-2a is superior to 24 weeks of pegylated interferon alpha-2b in achieving hepatitis B e antigen seroconversion in chronic hepatitis B infection.

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1
Department of Medicine, Queen Mary Hospital, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China. ckhui23@gmail.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND/AIM:

Although 48-week therapy with pegylated-interferons has been shown to be effective for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus infection, the efficacy of a shorter duration of therapy with pegylated interferons is unknown.

METHOD:

We reviewed 53 hepatitis B e antigen positive Chinese patients treated with 48 weeks of pegylated interferon alpha-2a or 24 weeks of pegylated interferon alpha-2b. Sustained virological response was defined as hepatitis B e antigen seroconversion and hepatitis B virus DNA <10(5) copies/mL at week 72.

RESULTS:

Twenty-nine patients were treated with 48 weeks of pegylated-interferon-alpha-2a and 24 patients with 24 weeks of pegylated-interferon-alpha-2b. At the end-of-therapy, hepatitis B e antigen seroconversion and hepatitis B virus DNA <10(5) copies/mL were similar between the two groups of patients [9/29 (31.0%) vs. 2/24 (8.3%), respectively, P = 0.09]. At week 72, 10 of the 29 patients (34.5%) treated with 48 weeks of pegylated-interferon-alpha-2a compared with two of the 24 patients (8.3%) treated with 24 weeks of pegylated-interferon-alpha-2b had sustained virological response (P = 0.04). By logistic analysis, 48 weeks of pegylated-interferon-alpha-2a was independently associated with sustained virological response (P = 0.04 adjusted hazards-ratio 9.37).

CONCLUSION:

Further studies are required to determine the optimal duration of therapy with pegylated interferons in chronic hepatitis B.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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