Recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma after direct acting antiviral treatment for hepatitis C virus infection: Literature review and risk analysisAlthough studies suggest decreased incident hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) after treatment with direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, data are conflicting regarding risk and aggressiveness of recurrence in patients who have a history of treated HCC. This review analyses data available in literature in order to elucidate the impact of DAAs on the risk of HCC recurrence after successful treatment of the tumor. Overall 24 papers were identified. The available data cannot be considered definitive, but the initial alarmist data indicating an increased risk of recurrence have not been confirmed by most subsequent studies.
Directly acting antivirals for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C: Unresolved topics from registration trialsThe Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency approval of first generation directly acting antivirals NS3 protease inhibitors boceprevir and telaprevir opens a new era in the treatment of patients with chronic hepatitis C virus genotype 1 infection. Indeed telaprevir and boceprevir registration trials clearly showed a substantial improvement in rates of sustained virological response both in naive and in treatment-experienced patients, with the possibility of shortened regimens in a consistent subset of patients, through the optimization of treatment algorithms.
Recommendations for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of chronic hepatitis B and C in special population groups (migrants, intravenous drug users and prison inmates)The global spread of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV), their high chronicity rates and their progression to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma, are major public health problems. Research and intervention programmes for special population groups are needed in order to assess their infection risk and set up suitable prevention and control strategies. Aim of this paper is to give health care professionals information on HBV and HCV infections amongst migrants, drug users and prison inmates.
Practice guidelines for the treatment of hepatitis C: Recommendations from an AISF/SIMIT/SIMAST Expert Opinion MeetingIt is increasingly clear that a tailored therapeutic approach to patients with hepatitis C virus infection is needed. Success rates in difficult to treat and low-responsive hepatitis C virus patients are not completely satisfactory, and there is the need to optimise treatment duration and intensity in patients with the highest likelihood of response. In addition, the management of special patient categories originally excluded from phase III registration trials needs to be critically re-evaluated.
Treatment of chronic hepatitis B: Recommendations from an Italian workshopThe changing scenario of hepatitis B virus therapy has encouraged the organisation of a workshop, endorsed by three Italian scientific societies, aimed at defining the current recommendations for hepatitis B virus treatment. Liver histology and stage of disease remain fundamental for treatment decisions; interferon and nucleoside/nucleotide analogues-based therapy represent different strategies for different phases of the hepatitis B virus disease. The recommendations defined: new and lower cut-off of hepatitis B virus–DNA for eligibility to therapy according to disease stage, how to optimise the use of nucleoside/nucleotide analogues and to individualise the monitoring of response and what to do with treatment failures.
Prophylaxis and treatment of hepatitis B in immunocompromised patientsThe literature on hepatitis B virus (HBV) in immunocompromised patients is heterogeneous and referred mainly to the pre-antivirals era. Today a rational approach to the problem of hepatitis B in these patients provides for: (a) the evaluation of HBV markers and of liver condition in all subjects starting immunosuppressive therapies (baseline), (b) the treatment with antivirals (therapy) of active carriers, (c) the pre-emptive use of antivirals (prophylaxis) in inactive carriers, especially if they are undergoing immunosuppressive therapies judged to be at high risk, (d) the biochemical and hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) monitoring (or universal prophylaxis, in case of high risk immunosuppression) in subjects with markers of previous contact with HBV (HBsAg negative and anti-HBc positive), in order to prevent reverse seroconversion.
Extrahepatic manifestations of Hepatitis C Virus infection: A general overview and guidelines for a clinical approachHepatitis C Virus is associated with a wide series of extrahepatic manifestations. Based on available data the link between the virus and some of these extrahepatic diseases is only suggested and needs further confirmation. Hepatitis C Virus-related lymphoproliferative disorders, whose prototype is mixed cryoglobulinaemia, represent the most closely related extrahepatic manifestations of Hepatitis C Virus. Other Hepatitis C Virus-associated disorders include nephropathies, thyreopathies, sicca syndrome, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, porphyria cutanea tarda, lichen planus, diabetes, chronic polyarthritis, cardiopathy and atherosclerosis.
Is there a role for immunotherapy in hepatocellular carcinoma?Incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma has been rising in the last two decades because of the wide exposure to hepatitis C virus during 1960s and 1970s. Improvement in treatment has been achieved by local ablative therapies, however because of early recurrence and lack of effective chemotherapies, alternative treatments based on stimulation of the anti-tumour immune response could represent new strategies to control hepatocellular carcinoma spread and recurrence. Proof of principle of an effective immunotherapy has been achieved for other solid tumours such as melanoma and several results could be transferred to the immunotherapy of hepatocellular carcinoma.