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Hepatitis News:

January 2006

Missing Patients' in Hep C Infection Risk
"NHS patients may be unaware they have contracted hepatitis C through blood transfusions, Scottish health officials admitted yesterday."

Researchers develop new vaccine candidate against Hepatitis C
"Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan's Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) say they have developed a vaccine candidate for hepatitis C."

Intercell's Hepatitis C vaccine meets success criteria for further development - route and frequency of administration optimized
"Intercell today announced initial data from a clinical trial aiming at the optimization of its therapeutic Hepatitis C vaccine IC41."

Hepatitis C protease inhibitor does well in early clinical trial
"A hepatitis C virus protease inhibitor has done well in early clinical trials. The oral drug, VX-950, which is being developed by Vertex Pharmaceuticals, achieved significant reductions in hepatitis C viral load when used in combination with pegylated interferon alfa-2a (Pegasys)."

Hepatitis C treatment difficult in older patients
"Because of side effects, patients over the age of 60 with hepatitis C find it more difficult to stick with standard treatments than do their younger counterparts, according to a study in Japan."

Chiron partners with Portland's AVI
"Chiron Corp. and AVI BioPharma Inc. announced an agreement Friday granting AVI a nonexclusive license to Chiron's patents and patent applications for the research, development and commercialization of drugs that fight the hepatitis C virus (HCV)."

Tarvacin(TM) Anti-Viral Hepatitis C Clinical Program in Acceleration Phase
"The initial success of our efforts to accelerate the HCV clinical trial program for Tarvacin Anti-Viral is gratifying in view of Tarvacin's promise as an important new treatment option for a number of viral infections, including chronic hepatitis C infection."

Inovio Biomedical to Develop Vaccine for Hepatitis C in Partnership with Tripep AB
"Inovio Biomedical Corporation, a late stage developer of cancer and other therapies using electroporation to deliver drugs and nucleic acids, announced today that it has signed an agreement with Swedish-based Tripep AB to develop a therapeutic vaccine for hepatitis C virus (HCV)."

HAART reduces liver-related death risk, but hepatitis C infection increases risk, Italian study finds
"Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) reduces the risk of liver-related death by 68%, although infection with both HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV) increases the risk of liver-related mortality more than ten-fold compared with individuals infected with HIV alone, according to data from the Brescia HIV Liver Cohort."

Transgene Awarded EUR 1.3 M Grant for Hepatitis C Therapeutic Vaccine Programme
"Transgene S.A. announces today that it has been awarded funding by the Lyon Biopole Competitiveness Cluster (Pole de competitivite) for the development of its therapeutic vaccine candidate against hepatitis C chronic infection (HCV)."

Biotech Firms Report Advances in Hepatitis C Drugs
"Shares of two biotechnology companies jumped yesterday after they reported some of the best results ever seen in treatment of a serious liver virus, the latest indication that a cure for hepatitis C could be at hand in a few years -- just in time to rescue millions of baby boomers with the ailment."

Check blood for Hepatitis C, transfusion patients urged
"KUALA LUMPUR: Patients who received blood transfusions before 1997 have been asked to check their blood to ensure they are not infected with Hepatitis C."

Schering-Plough Reports FDA Grants Fast Track Designation to Oral HCV Protease Inhibitor SCH 503034
"Schering-Plough yesterday reported that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Fast Track designation to its investigational oral hepatitis C protease inhibitor (SCH 503034), currently in phase 2 clinical development for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection."

Cyclosporine Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus In Vitro
"Liver transplant patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) achieved significantly better long-term viral response when taking the immunosuppressive agent Cyclosporine along with interferon-ribavirin combination therapy."

MedMira Granted Hepatitis C Patent in Europe
"MedMira Inc.,the global market leader in premium rapid diagnostic solutions, announced today that it has been granted a patent for the HCV Mosaic Antigen by the European Patent Office."

Valeant buys InterMune hepatitis C drug
"Valeant Pharmaceuticals International said Tuesday it closed its purchase of the United States and Canadian rights to hepatitis C drug Infergen from InterMune Inc. for $113.5 million in cash."

Biochemical connection between hepatitis C virus and liver cancer identified
"Researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB ) have identified a key biochemical connection between the hepatitis C virus and liver cancer."

Clinical Trials, Cohort Studies, Pilot Studies

Long-term evolution of liver histopathology in patients with chronic hepatitis C and sustained response. [Article in Spanish, English]. Moreno M, Perez-Alvarez R, Rodrigo L, R Perez-Lopez, Gonzalez M. Rev Esp Enferm Dig. 2005 Dec;97(12):860-869.

Treatment of chronic hepatitis C with interferon alone or combined with ribavirin in Japan. Kumada T, et al. Intervirology. 2006;49(1-2):112-8.

Early monotherapy with pegylated interferon alpha-2b for acute hepatitis C infection: The HEP-NET acute-HCV-II study. Wiegand J, et al. Hepatology. 2006 Feb;43(2):250-6.

Retreatment with interferon of relapsed chronic hepatitis C patients. [Article in Chinese] Li MH, et al. Zhonghua Gan Zang Bing Za Zhi. 2006 Jan;14(1):3-6.

A phase I trial of an antisense inhibitor of hepatitis C virus (ISIS 14803), administered to chronic hepatitis C patients. McHutchison JG, et al. J Hepatol. 2006 Jan;44(1):88-96. Epub 2005 Oct 25.

Dose-dependent and genotype-independent sustained virological response of a 12 week pegylated interferon alpha-2b treatment for acute hepatitis C. De Rosa FG, et al. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2006 Feb;57(2):360-3. Epub 2006 Jan 5.

Basic And Applied Science, Pre-Clinical Studies

Hepatitis C virus induces toll-like receptor 4 expression, leading to enhanced production of beta interferon and interleukin-6. Machida K, et al. J Virol. 2006 Jan;80(2):866-74.

A link between translation of the hepatitis C virus polyprotein and polymerase function; possible consequences for hyperphosphorylation of NS5A.
McCormick CJ, et al. J Gen Virol. 2006 Jan;87(Pt 1):93-102.

Characterization of T-cell responses against immunodominant epitopes from hepatitis C virus E2 and NS4a proteins. Sarobe P, et al. J Viral Hepat. 2006 Jan;13(1):47-55.

Vigorous Hepatitis C Virus-Specific CD4+ and CD8+ T Cell Responses Induced by Protein Immunization in the Presence of Montanide ISA720 plus Synthetic Oligodeoxynucleotides Containing Immunostimulatory Cytosine-Guanine Dinucleotide Motifs. Sugauchi F, et al. J Infect Dis. 2006 Feb 15;193(4):563-72. Epub 2006 Jan 11.

HLA class I allelic diversity and progression of fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis C. Patel K, et al. Hepatology. 2006 Feb;43(2):241-9.

Liver endothelial cells promote LDL-R expression and the uptake of HCV-like particles in primary rat and human hepatocytes. Nahmias Y, et al. Hepatology. 2006 Feb;43(2):257-65.

Increased liver pathology in hepatitis C virus transgenic mice expressing the hepatitis B virus X protein. Keasler VV, et al. Virology. 2006 Jan 19; [Epub ahead of print]

Selective transmission of hepatitis C virus genotypes and quasispecies in humans and experimentally infected chimpanzees. Nainan OV, et al. J Gen Virol. 2006 Jan;87(Pt 1):83-91.

HIV/HCV Coinfection

Survival and prognostic factors of HIV-infected patients with HCV-related end-stage liver disease.
Merchante N, et al. AIDS. 2006 Jan 2;20(1):49-57.

Coinfection With HIV-1 and Human T-Cell Lymphotropic Virus Type II in Intravenous Drug Users Is Associated With Delayed Progression to AIDS. Turci M, et al. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2006 Jan 1;41(1):100-106.

Liver Fibrosis in HIV-Positive Patients With Hepatitis C Virus: Role of Persistently Normal Alanine Aminotransferase Levels. Uberti-Foppa C, et al. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2006 Jan 1;41(1):63-7.

Immunologic Response to Antiretroviral Therapy in Hepatitis C Virus-Coinfected Adults in a Population-Based HIV/AIDS Treatment Program. Braitstein P, J Infect Dis. 2006 Jan 15;193(2):259-68. Epub 2005 Dec 7.

Influence of HCV or HBV coinfection on adverse drug reactions to antiretroviral drugs in HIV patients. Guitton E, et al. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2006 Jan 17;:1-7 [Epub ahead of print]

Impact of hepatitis C infection on long-term mortality of injecting drug users from 1990 to 2002: differences before and after HAART. Lumbreras B, et al. AIDS. 2006 Jan 2;20(1):111-6

Complementary And Alternative Therapies

Vitamin E and C supplementation prevents decrease of eicosapentaenoic acid in mononuclear cells in chronic hepatitis C patients during combination therapy of interferon alpha-2b and ribavirin. Murakami Y, et al. Nutrition. 2006 Feb;22(2):114-22.

Effects of L-carnitine in patients with hepatic encephalopathy. Malaguarnera M, et al. World J Gastroenterol. 2005 Dec 7;11(45):7197-202.

Exploratory study on the effects of treatment with two mistletoe preparations on chronic hepatitis C. Tusenius KJ, Spoek AM, van Hattum J. Arzneimittelforschung. 2005;55(12):749-53.

Miscellaneous Works

Surveillance programs for chronic viral hepatitis in three health departments. Fleming DT, et al. Public Health Rep. 2006 Jan-Feb;121(1):23-35.

Hepatitis vaccination among drug users. Quaglio G, et al. Vaccine. 2006 Jan 6; [Epub ahead of print]

Higher clearance of HCV infection in females compared to males. Bakr I, et al. Gut. 2006 Jan 24; [Epub ahead of print]

Viral hepatitis C in Hong Kong. Leung N, Chu C, Tam JS. Intervirology. 2006;49(1-2):23-7.

Digestive endoscopy and HCV transmission. Bronowicki JP. J Hepatol. 2006 Jan;44(1):246-7. Epub 2005 Nov 16.

Development and validation of two models for early prediction of response to therapy in genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C. Martinez-Bauer E, et al. Hepatology. 2006 Jan;43(1):72-80.

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Hepatitis C is the most common, chronic blood-borne
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