Study finds regression of cirrhosis with DF treatment for chronic HBV infection

Treatment for up to five years with tenofovir disoproxil fumarate for chronic hepatitis B infection is safe, effective and can lead to regression of cirrhosis and fibrosis, according to a recent study.

Patrick Marcellin, a professor of hepatology at the University of Paris, and his team attempted to assess the effects of tenofovir DF treatment for chronic HBV infection on fibrosis and cirrhosis. Prior to the study, little research had been done on whether long-term suppression of HBV was beneficial on the regression of advanced liver fibrosis, the Lancet reports.

The researchers conducted 48 weeks of randomized double-blind comparison of tenofovir DF with adefovir dipivoxil. Marcellin's team assessed histological improvement and regression of fibrosis.

Of the 348 patients who received biopsy results at baseline and week 240, 304 had histological improvement and 176 had regression of fibrosis at week 240. Of 96 patients with cirrhosis at the beginning of the study, 71 no longer had cirrhosis at week 240. Only three of 252 patients without cirrhosis progressed to cirrhosis by year five, the Lancet reports.

Sixteen percent of patients had adverse events during the study but only nine patients had serious events related to the drug tested in the study.