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12 Jun 2013

EC approves new dosing of HCV drug

Patients will be able to take the drug twice rather than three times daily.

The European Commission (EC) has approved a new twice-daily dosing of Janssen's INCIVO (telaprevir) direct-acting antiviral (DAA) drug, which is used to treat genotype-1 chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV).
The infection, which can lead to numerous liver problems, affects more than 150 million worldwide and kills 350,000 sufferers every year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
A new form of administration was approved following positive results in the OPTIMIZE trial, in which patients taking 1,125 mg of telaprevir twice daily in combination with pegylated-interferon and ribavirin (PR) experienced favourable outcomes.
Virologic response rates between this dosing and the currently-used method, which involves taking the drug every eight hours, were comparable, showing that adjusting the recommendation could be beneficial.
Lead study investigator Dr Kosh Agarwal said: "By making the treatment regimen simpler for patients it may help their adherence rates, without compromising on efficacy and overall viral clearance."

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