HepCInfo Updates

HepCInfo Update 7.11 

Welcome to CATIE's HepCInfo Update 7.11 for June 11 to June 24, 2016. Read on to learn more about new and updated scientific findings in hepatitis C prevention, care, treatment and support.

New and noteworthy

In-depth information on new Hep C treatments in TreatmentUpdate 215

The latest edition of TreatmentUpdate, CATIE’s Hep C and HIV treatment digest, covers the most recent research on new hepatitis C treatments.

(catie.ca, May/June 2016, in English and French)

CATIE News: High acceptance for rapid Hep C testing

The majority of participants (85%) who filled out a survey at a needle and syringe program would be willing to take a rapid Hep C test if it were available, reported researchers in Open Forum Infectious Disease.

The 413 participants did not have Hep C and were from rural and urban areas in Wisconsin. They filled out a survey on their attitudes towards rapid Hep C testing.

Tests that are performed outside of a laboratory, such as in a doctor’s office are called point-of-care tests. There is one point-of-care rapid Hep C test available in the U.S. called OraQuick. It tests oral fluid for Hep C antibodies and provides results in 20 minutes.

Health Canada is assessing the data on this test in order to determine if it will be licensed in Canada.

Participants who were younger than 30 years old and who perceived themselves at high risk for becoming infected with Hep C were more likely to want to use rapid testing.

The researchers stated that rapid Hep C testing might be “a useful tool” for helping people at high risk for Hep C to find out their infection status and linking them to care. (catie.ca, June 2016, in English and French)

People treated for Hep C have high rates of liver cancer recurrence

People with severe liver injury (cirrhosis) who were treated for Hep C had twice the expected likelihood of developing liver cancer, with the excess risk seen in people who previously had liver cancer, reported researchers at the International Liver Congress.

Participants were from an Italian referral centre and had received treatment with direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) between March and November of 2015. There were 344 participants, the majority of whom were men, and their median age was 63 years. All participants had a high level of liver injury (Child-Pugh class A or B). At the start of the study no participants had liver cancer.

Participants were treated with one of seven different interferon-free DAA treatments. Eighty-nine percent of participants were cured (also called a sustained virological response or SVR) of Hep C through treatment.

Overall, liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma or HCC) was detected in 26 (7.6%) of participants between the end of treatment and 24 weeks of follow up.

In people with a previous history of liver cancer, 17 (29%) developed liver cancer.  Among people without history of cancer, 3.2% developed cancer, not much higher than expected rate.

"In cirrhotic patients treated with DAAs, development of HCC represents a significant clinical problem, despite a high rate of SVR," the researchers concluded. "This seems particularly true [of] those patients with a history of previous HCC, in whom a surprisingly high rate of HCC recurrence was observed, over a relatively short period of time." (aidsmap.com, April 2016, in English)

Straight to the source for new science

Real-world sustained virologic response rates of sofosbuvir-containing regimens in patients coinfected with hepatitis C and HIV, Clinical Infectious Diseases, June 2016, in English

Successful retreatment of HCV in patients coinfected with HIV who failed 12 weeks of ledipasvir/sofosbuvir, Clinical Infectious Diseases, May 2016, in English