Hepatitis C, the most common form of hepatitis which affects almost 170-180 million people world wide caused by the infectous agent HCV (hepatitis C Virus) finds hope in the drug Telaprevir said a team of researchers led by Dr. Ira M. Jacobson (Newyork Presbyterian Hospital).The U.S. FDA gave approval to telaprevir to be used on patients.HCV is divided in to 6 genotypes and telaprevir targets genotype 1 which is predominant.
Standard therapy finds support
Vaccination is not available for hepatitis C. General Treatment methodology for genotype involves usage of Pegasys (Pegylated interferon-alpha-2a),PEG-Intron (Pegylated interferon-alpha-2b) along with ribavirin.When telaprevir was admintered to the hepatitis patients along with the above mentioned standard treatment results showed 75% of the patients among the treated ones were cured, while in the patient group who received only the standard therapy only 44% cure was noted.Telaprevir also proved to reduce the treatment duration to half compared to the standard treatment used.
Mode of Action proving clinical superiority
Telaprevir is a protease inhibitor which inhibits a major NS3/NS4A HCV protease constituting an important role in the life cylce of virus by competing for the active site of NS3 with the viral peptides. Telaprevir (VX-950) is a peptidomimetic and when used in monotherapy did not give proper response when compared to combined therapy with standard treatment.Higher rates of SVR along with high side effects were obtained when compared to the standard treatment.This protease inhibitor when used with boceprevir (another protease inhibitor recently introduced) will prove to be a remarkable approach of the medical community against hepatitis C virus and will help in eradicating the disease from majority of hepatitis affected patients.
About 3 million population of United States suffer from chronic hepatitis C and this may become life threatening as liver fail to clear harmful substances from blood leading to liver failure amd liver transplant.HCV genotype 1 is responsible for majority of hepatitis cases in Europe, US and telaprevir is effective against this genotype.Dr. Jacobson states that many other exiciting drugs are also simultaneously evaluated to achieve the goal of curing hepatitis C and saving many lives.Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Tibotec pharmaceuticals and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma have together developed telaprevir.Inspite of the higher side effect rate this drug still holds promising hopes and possibility to cure hepatitis C due to its efficacy in experiments conducted and research carried out.Further various other researches is also carried out to test the efficacy of telaprevir when combined with other proteae inhibitors also.