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J Med Virol. 2017 Mar;89(3):476-483. doi: 10.1002/jmv.24663. Epub 2016 Aug 23.

Sustained virologic response by direct antiviral agents reduces the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with HCV infection.

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Department of Hepatology, Toranomon Hospital, Tokyo, Japan.


The aim of this study was to assess the rate of development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in patients who achieved sustained virologic response (SVR) by direct antiviral agents (DAA). We retrospectively evaluated patients who achieved SVR by oral DAA interferon-free regimens (n = 77) (daclatasvir/asunaprevir [n = 67], ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir [n = 9], and telaprevir [n = 1]) and by pegylated-interferon plus ribavirin (Peg-IFN/RBV, n = 528). In all patients, the background was chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis caused by HCV genotype 1b. During a median follow-up period of 4.0 years, two (2.6%) of DAA-treated patients developed HCC. The 3- and 5-year cumulative HCC development rates were 1.30% and 3.03%, respectively, in the DAA group, and 1.02% and 2.19 % in the Peg-IFN/RBV group (P not significant). In patients with Fib-4 score of >3.25, the 3-year HCC development rates were 4.35% and 3.95%, whereas those of the 5 year were 9.66% and 8.37%, in the DAA and Peg-IFN/RBV group, respectively. In patients with Fib-4 score of ≤3.25, none of the DAA group developed HCC, whereas 0.48% at 3-year and 1.05% at 5-year of patients of the Peg-IFN/RBV group did. Propensity score analysis using the inverse probability of treatment weights (IPTW) also showed no significant difference in HCC development rate between the two groups. Serum AFP gradually and similarly decreased after initiation of antiviral therapy in both groups. Our data indicate that the HCC risk rate after SVR is similar regardless of whether the latter was achieved by DAA or IFN-based regimens. J. Med. Virol. 89:476-483, 2017.


cancer prevention; direct antiviral agents; hepatitis C virus; hepatocellular carcinoma; sustained virologic response

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