Entecavir shows promise for chronic hepatitis B

January 10, 2005

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a major healthcare problem around the world. It is estimated that 350 million to 400 million people are chronically infected. The development and approval of oral antihepatitis B virus agents, lamivudine, and, more recently, adefovir dipivoxil, revolutionized the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. However, the emergence of resistant HBV mutants remains the main factor limiting the efficacy of antiviral therapy.With lamivudine, the problem of resistance is very frequent and progressively increases with prolongation of therapy (> 50% at three years).