National AIDS Manual - Dr. Douglas Dieterich: "Simeprevir with Interferon Effective for HIV/HCV Co-infected People with Genotype 1 Hepatitis C"

 – October 21, 2013  –– 

Douglas Dieterich, MD, of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai presented late-breaking findings from the a study evaluating triple therapy with the drug Simeprevir for HIV/HCV co-infected patients at the 14th European AIDS Conference in Brussels. Co-infected people experience more rapid liver disease progression and do not respond as well to interferon-based therapy as HIV-negative people with hepatitis C alone, so there is an urgent need for better therapies. These findings, Dieterich said, support the trend that "SVR [Sustained virological response] rates for HIV-positive people seem similar to [those for] HIV-negative people in the new world of direct acting antiretrovirals." He added that it is good to finally have "true antivirals" for hepatitis C, as HIV clinicians have had for a long time. Noting that people on antiretroviral therapy responded better, Dieterich said that even if co-infected patients don't need ART [antiretroviral therapy] according to CD4 count, "I want them on it during hepatitis C treatment because we want as many good-quality CD4 cells as possible.". Learn more