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J Hepatol. 2008 Oct;49(4):557-63. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2008.06.025. Epub 2008 Jul 21.

Antiviral therapy after complete response to chemotherapy could be efficacious in HCV-positive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

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Internal Medicine and Hepatology Unit, Second University of Naples, Napoli, Italy.

Erratum in

  • J Hepatol. 2009 Feb;50(2):438.



Prevalence of HCV infection in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is high. The impact of antiviral therapy on the natural history of this subgroup of lymphomas after a successful chemotherapy regimen is still an argument of debate.


We retrospectively examined 343 chemotherapy-treated patients referred to our centre for five consecutive years. Clinical and histological characteristics, disease free-survival (DFS) and overall-survival (OS) were compared in HCV-positive (69/343) and HCV-negative (274/343) patients. Twenty-five HCV-positive patients received antiviral treatment following chemotherapy discontinuation. Uni- and multivariate analyses were performed.


20% of lymphomas were HCV-positive. Indolent histology was prevalent in the HCV-positive group (p<0.05); no significant differences in OS or DFS were found between the two groups; in HCV-positive subjects, antiviral therapy, was associated with a longer DFS (p<0.05); none of the HCV-positive subjects who achieved a virological response experienced any lymphoma relapse; 29% of non responders did; at multivariate analysis, the independent factors related to a better clinical outcome were: indolent histology at the onset of lymphoma and antiviral therapy.


Antiviral treatment in HCV-positive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma may be an important strategy to reinforce the results of a successful chemotherapy regimen; further studies are needed to validate this combined approach.

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