Three-month pegylated interferon-alpha-2a therapy for chronic hepatitis E virus infection in a haemodialysis patient.Nephrol Dial Transplant 2010; 25(8):2792-5ND
Hepatitis E virus (HEV) can induce chronic hepatitis in immunosuppressed patients. There is no established treatment for HEV infection. Pegylated interferon-alpha-2a (Peg-IFN-alpha-2a) has been successfully used for treating HEV infection in liver transplant patients with chronic hepatitis. A kidney transplant patient with chronic HEV infection evolved to end-stage kidney disease and started haemodialysis. Three months after immunosuppressive therapy was stopped, HEV RNA was still detected both in serum and in stools. Before considering a retransplantation, we decided to initiate Peg-IFN-alpha-2a therapy to eradicate the virus. A 3-month course of Peg-IFN-alpha-2a was scheduled, and the latter was started at the weekly dose of 135 microg. Serum HEV RNA became negative by Week 3 of Peg-IFN-alpha-2a therapy, and remained negative until the last follow-up, i.e. 6 months after anti-viral therapy was stopped. Hence, we report the first known case of a 3-month course of Peg-IFN-alpha-2a inducing a sustained virological response in this HEV-positive and RNA-positive haemodialysis patient who had failed to be cleared of the virus after immunosuppressant withdrawal.