Anti-HIV drug now indicated to treat chronic hepatitis B

September 15, 2008

Chronic hepatitis B can now be treated with a new drug.

Key Points

Known as the silent killer because it can persist for years without showing symptoms, chronic hepatitis B can now be treated with a new drug. Gilead Sciences' Viread (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) was approved in 2001 to treat HIV. Chronic hepatitis B is a liver disease that disproportionately affects Asian Americans and is the leading cause of liver cancer worldwide. Complications from the disease can kill one in four of those affected.