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[Clinical efficacy of various antiviral-based strategies to treat chronic hepatitis patients with positivity for hepatitis B e antigen and rtN236T mutation].



To compare the efficacy and safety of the common antivirals, including adefovir dipivoxil (ADV), pegylated-interferon alpha-2a (peg-IFN) and lamivudine (LAM), used as combination therapies to treat chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients with positivity for the hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) and hepatitis B virus (HBV) harboring the ADV-resistance mutation, rtN236T, and to explore the factors associated with curative outcome.


Sixty-five adult CHB patients (age range: 20-60 years) who were unresponsive to ADV therapy (HBeAg-positive; HBV DNA >or= 10(5) copies/ml), LAM-naive, and tested positive for the rtN236T HBV mutation were enrolled in the study and randomly divided into two treatment groups: Group A (n = 33), who were administered ADV (10 mg/day, orally) plus peg-IFN (180 microg/week, subcutaneous injection) for 48 weeks; and Group B (n = 32 patients), who received the ADV plus LAM (100 mg/day, orally) for 48 weeks followed by continued LAM treatment for an additional 24 weeks. Pre- (baseline), during and post-treatment measurements of HBV viral loads and hepatitis B markers were made by quantitative PCR and electrochemiluminescence assays, respectively. All patients underwent liver biopsies to determine the histological activity index (HAI) and treatment response regarding inflammation and fibrosis stage. The rates of virological response (VR), HBeAg-negativity, HBeAg seroconversion, and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) normalization were calculated, and the significance of differences between groups were assessed by Student's t-test and Chi2 test.


There were no significant differences between the two groups in regards to sex, age, or baseline levels of HBV DNA, ALT, and total bilirubin (P > 0.05). At weeks 24 and 48 of treatment and 24 after treatment end, group A showed significantly higher (vs. group B, P < 0.05) rates of reduced HBV DNA viral loads (81.8%, 90.9%, and 75.8% vs. 53.1%, 56.2%, and 59.4%), VR (48.5%, 60.6%, and 42.4% vs. 31.3%, 34.4%, and 31.3%), HBeAg-negativity (39.4%, 60.6%, and 54.5% vs. 12.5%, 37.5%, and 37.5%), HBeAg seroconversion (27.3%, 54.5%, and 48.5% vs. 6.3%, 15.6%, and 18.8%), and ALT normalization (72.7%, 84.8%, and 78.8% vs. 46.9%, 56.3%, and 46.9%). After 48 weeks of treatment, group A showed significantly improved HAI (vs. group B, P < 0.05). With the exception of treatment-related increased creatinine (P < 0.05), group A showed significantly higher rates of adverse reactions; although, none was serious enough to threaten patient safety or necessitate early termination of the treatment regimen. Twenty-four weeks after treatment completion, five patients had HBV viral loads of >or= 2log10 copies/ml and four had < or= 500 copies/ml, and ALT was normalized in 28 patients. The four patients in group A with HBV DNA < or= 500 copies/ml and elevated ALT during treatment did not show HBeAg seroconversion.


Peg-IFN plus ADV combination therapy produced better outcomes than the ADV plus LAM combination therapy in regards to HBV viral loads, VR rate, HBeAg-negative rate, HBeAg seroconversion rate, ALT normalization rate, and HAI, but was associated with a higher rate of adverse reactions (none of which were severe). Lack of HBeAg seroconversion was associated with higher virus load and ALT levels.


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    Department of Infectious Diseases, First Hospital of Lanzhou University, China.

    , , ,



    Drug Resistance, Viral
    Drug Therapy, Combination
    Hepatitis B e Antigens
    Hepatitis B virus
    Hepatitis B, Chronic
    Middle Aged
    Polyethylene Glycols
    Recombinant Proteins
    Young Adult

    Pub Type(s)

    English Abstract
    Journal Article
    Randomized Controlled Trial
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't



    PubMed ID