Background: Combination of pegylated interferon (Peg-IFN) and ribavirin is the standard treatment for HCV infection in HIV co-infected patients. However, data available on the efficacy of this therapy in co-infected patients who failed a former interferon-based regimen are limited. Methods: We analysed the efficacy and safety of the Peg-IFN alfa-2a or alfa-2b plus ribavirin combination in a multicentre observational cohort study including 54 HCV/HIV co-infected patients who had failed to respond to or relapsed on interferon-based treatment. The primary efficacy endpoint was the proportion of patients who achieved a sustained virological response (SVR), defined as HCV RNA <50 IU/mL 24 weeks after completion of therapy. Results: By intention-to-treat analysis, 30% of the patients achieved an SVR. Viral eradication by genotype was 18.9% (7/37) genotype 1; 57.1% (8/14) genotype 3 and 33.3% (1/3) genotype 4. The only independent predictor of SVR was genotype 3 (odds ratio: 5.3; 95% confidence interval: 1.4-19.8). Fourteen (38%) patients with genotype 1 had undetectable viral load at week 48 of treatment. Nevertheless, 50% of them relapsed during the follow-up period. Severe adverse events or progression of HIV infection did not occur during the study; however, 39% of the patients required Peg-IFN dose reduction because of intolerance or haematological toxicity. Conclusions: Combined Peg-IFN and ribavirin achieved a substantial rate of SVR in HCV/HIV co-infected patients who failed a prior standard interferon-based regimen. The decision to retreat any co-infected patient should be individual-based. More aggressive strategies may be necessary to avoid the high relapse rate observed among patients with genotype 1. © The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved.
|Journal||Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy|
|Publication status||Published - 6 Oct 2008|
- HCV non-responders
- HCV retreatment strategies
- HIV co-infection