Repurposing Allergy Meds to Treat Hep C
Recently, the breakthroughs in Hepatitis C treatment have changed the outlook of this notoriously difficult to treat liver infection. The newer Hepatitis C medications are helping more people than ever eliminate the Hepatitis C virus from their bodies.
Unfortunately, the new antiviral drugs come with an extremely high price tag – excluding many people from receiving treatment. In search of affordable Hepatitis C treatment options, researchers have tested an inexpensive, over-the-counter allergy drug and found it to be a viable therapeutic candidate.
The Old Standard of Care
For over a decade, the Hepatitis C standard of care consisted of treatment with pegylated interferon and ribavirin. This drug combination was not ideal because:
- Side Effects – Serious side effects are common and include reduced immunity, anemia, depression and flu-like symptoms.
- Discontinuance – About 15 percent of patients on interferon and ribavirin had to stop treatment early due to the severity of their side effects.
- Duration – Enduring this treatment was rough as it usually required six months to a year of treatment.
- Low Success – For those able to complete interferon/ribavirin treatment, the maximum success rate only reached just 50 percent.
http://hepatitisnewstoday.com/2015/04/10/antihistamine-medication-may-be-a-promising-treatment-for-hepatitis-c/, Antihistamine Medication May Be a Promising Treatment for Hepatitis C,
http://stm.sciencemag.org/content/7/282/282ra49, Repurposing of the antihistamine chlorcyclizine and related compounds for treatment of hepatitis C virus infection, Shanshan He, et al, Retrieved April 19, 2015, Science Translational Medicine, April 2015.
http://www.aidsinfonet.org/fact_sheets/view/680, Interferon and Ribavirin, Retrieved April 23, 2015, AIDS InfoNet, 2015.
http://www.hepatitiscentral.com/news/breaking-news-viekira-pak-approved-for-hep-c/, Breaking News: Viekira Pak Approved for Hep C, Nicole Cutler, L.Ac., Retrieved April 24, 2015, Hepatitis Central, 2015.
http://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-159074/chlorcyclizine-hcl-chlophedianol-hcl-oral/details#, Chlorcyclizine Hcl-Chlophedianol Hcl, Retrieved April 19, 2015, WebMD, LLC, 2015.
http://www.webmd.com/hepatitis/news/20150408/cheap-allergy-drug-may-hold-potential-as-hepatitis-c-treatment, Allergy Drug May Have Potential Against Hep C, Randy Dotinga, Retrieved April 23, 2015, WebMD, LLC, 2015.
New, Simplified Treatment for ALL Hepatitis C Genotypes
Merck's Chances Are Good for an FDA Approval