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Hepat Mon. 2014 Mar 1;14(3):e15729. doi: 10.5812/hepatmon.15729. eCollection 2014 Mar.

Interferon alpha-2b therapy in chronic hepatitis delta.

Author information

1
Blood Transfusion Research Center, High Institute for Research and Education in Transfusion Medicine, Tehran, IR Iran ; Middle East Liver Disease (MELD) Center, Tehran, IR Iran.
2
Middle East Liver Disease (MELD) Center, Tehran, IR Iran.
3
Blood Transfusion Research Center, High Institute for Research and Education in Transfusion Medicine, Tehran, IR Iran.
4
Department of Biostatistics, School of Medical Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, IR Iran.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Approximately 5% of hepatitis B virus (HBV) carriers are coinfected with hepatitis D virus (HDV). HBV/HDV coinfection is a major cause of cirrhosis and end stage liver disease in chronic HBsAg carriers. The only approved therapy for chronic hepatitis delta is interferon alpha (IFN α) in either pegylated or conventional forms. Although higher doses and longer durations of IFN α therapy in HBV/HDV coinfected patients are currently applied, yet treatment response is low.

OBJECTIVES:

We aimed to determine the efficacy of IFN α-2b therapy in patients with HBV/HDV coinfection.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

In this cross sectional study, 20 HBsAg carriers with positive Anti-HDVAb and RT-PCR for HDV RNA were recruited and treated for three year duration with 5 million units (MU) of IFN α-2b, three times weekly or one year with 5 MU of IFN α-2b daily. Sustained virological response (SVR) was defined as a negative qualitative HDV RT-PCR, 6 months after treatment cessation.

RESULTS:

Overall, 3 (15%) subjects achieved SVR, 10 cases (50%) relapsed after treatment cessation and 7 (35%) patients did not clear HDV during the treatment.

CONCLUSIONS:

HDV coinfection with HBV had very low response rate to high doses and long durations of IFN α-2b therapy.

KEYWORDS:

Hepatitis D; Interferon-alpha; Iran

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