How to tell if a hepatitis-C-virus-infected patient will respond to therapy

Dec 22, 2008

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) causes hepatitis and increased risk of developing liver cancer. Current treatments are expensive, have severe side effects, and fail in about half the patients treated. However, the Virahep-C Study Group, at Saint Louis University, has now developed an approach that predicted the outcome of therapy, raising the possibility of a test to predict treatment response and reduce treatment failures, something that could save a great deal of pain and expense for HCV-infected patients.

The research team, led by John Tavis and Rajeev Aurora, used a method known as covariation analysis to analyze variation in the genome-wide amino-acid sequence of viruses isolated from HCV-infected patients before they underwent treatment. Using this approach, networks of covariation were found to associate with specific responses of the patients to treatment.

The authors suggest that the data has implications for the development of a test to predict how an individual infected with HCV will respond to treatment and might help identify targets for new antiviral drugs. In an accompanying commentary, Thomas Oh and Charles Rice, at Rockefeller University, New York, discuss further the therapeutic implications of these data.

Source: Journal of Clinical Investigation

Explore further: Salmonella and Campylobacter show significant levels of resistance to common antimicrobials in humans and animals

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Canada looks east-west to ship oil after Keystone veto

3 hours ago

After US President Barack Obama vetoed a bill to expedite construction of the Keystone XL pipeline Tuesday, petroleum producers are expected to turn to Canadian routes to ship oil internationally, but hurdles ...

Internet access limited in developing world

3 hours ago

Most people in the developing world do not use the Internet, with access limited by high costs, poor availability and a lack of relevant content, a Facebook report said Tuesday.

Manhattan Project physicist Ralph Nobles dies at 94

3 hours ago

(AP)—Ralph Nobles, a nuclear physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project and later led efforts to save thousands of acres of San Francisco Bay wetlands from development, died following complications of pneumonia, according ...

In Japan, robot dogs are for life - and death

3 hours ago

Incense smoke wafts through the cold air of the centuries-old Buddhist temple as a priest chants a sutra, praying for the peaceful transition of the souls of the departed.

US sees little severe weather so far in 2015

3 hours ago

(AP)—While a big chunk of the nation deals with snow and ice, the U.S. is poised to end January and February with the fewest bouts of severe weather in decades.

Recommended for you

Home walking program improves erectile function after MI

Feb 27, 2015

(HealthDay)—For men with recent acute myocardial infarction, a home-based walking program is associated with a reduction in reported erectile dysfunction (ED), according to a study published in the March ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.