New treatments cure hepatitis C in patients co-infected with HIV

July 29, 2015

Around the world, between 4 and 5 million people are infected with both HIV and the hepatitis C virus. These patients have high rates of liver disease. Until now, effective treatment for co-infected patients has been difficult since the interferon-based drugs traditionally used to treat hepatitis C have severe side effects and can interact with the antiretrovirals used to treat HIV. Dr. Curtis Cooper is the second author of a study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine that finds a combination of ledipasvir and sofosbuvir can eliminate the hepatitis C virus in 96% of co-infected patients with only mild side effects. A total of 335 patients were enrolled in the three-month study undertaken at 60 sites in Canada, the United States, Puerto Rico, and New Zealand. “Several of our patients participated in the study and many more are now benefiting from this new therapy in our Viral Hepatitis Clinic,” said Dr. Cooper.

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Lois Ross
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Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
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