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Gut. 2007 Dec;56(12):1747-53. Epub 2007 Jun 15.

A large-scale, multicentre, double-blind trial of ursodeoxycholic acid in patients with chronic hepatitis C.

Author information

  • 1Department of Gastroenterology, University of Tokyo Graduate School of Medicine, Hongo 7-3-1, Bunkyo, Tokyo 113-8655, Japan. omata-2im@h.u-tokyo.ac.jp

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Combined pegylated interferon and ribavirin has improved chronic hepatitis C (CH-C) therapy; however, sustained virological response is achieved in only about half of the patients with a 1b genotype infection. We assessed oral ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) on serum biomarkers as a possible treatment for interferon non-responders.

METHODS:

CH-C patients with elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT) were assigned randomly to 150 (n = 199), 600 (n = 200) or 900 mg/day (n = 197) UDCA intake for 24 weeks. Changes in ALT, aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT) were assessed. This study is registered at ClinicalTrial.gov, identifier NCT00200343.

RESULTS:

ALT, AST and GGT decreased at week 4 and then remained constant during drug administration. The median changes (150, 600 and 900 mg/day, respectively) were: ALT, -15.3, -29.2 and -36.2%; AST, -13.6, -25.0 and -29.8%; GGT, -22.4, -41.0 and -50.0%. These biomarkers decreased significantly less in the 150 mg/day than in the other two groups. Although changes in ALT and AST did not differ between the 600 and 900 mg/day groups, GGT was significantly lower in the 900 mg/day group. In subgroup analysis, ALT decreased significantly in the 900 mg/day group when the baseline GGT exceeded 80 IU/l. Serum HCV-RNA did not change in any group. Adverse effects were reported by 19.1% of the patients, with no differences between groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

A 600 mg/day UDCA dose was optimal to decrease ALT and AST levels in CH-C patients. The 900 mg/day dose decreased GGT levels further, and may be preferable in patients with prevailing biliary injuries.

PMID:
17573387
PMCID:
PMC2095694
DOI:
10.1136/gut.2007.120956
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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