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article imageBreakthrough Hepatitis C drug cures 90% of patients in 12 weeks

By Marcus Hondro     Apr 13, 2014 in Health
A new hepatitis C drug is being hailed as a "major breakthrough" by scientists and a "turning point" in the fight for a cure. The research was conducted in four countries and lead by scientists at the University of Texas Health Science Center.
The researchers had 380 patients from 78 health centers in England, Germany, Spain and the United States. It is an oral drug and two studies were conducted, one of them lasting 12 weeks, the other 24.
In the shorter study, after taking the drug for the 12 weeks, 191 of 208 patients were tested and found to no longer have hepatitis C. In the 24 week study, 165 of 172 patients were cured of hepatitis C, a 96 percent success rate.
Hepatitis C is a disease of the liver that it passed on through blood and other manners and can be passed from needle usage. Not every type of the infection was tested, the type tested was genotype 1 infections, one of the more common types of hep C. Side-effects while taking the drug were headaches, fatigue and nausea.
The research team was ecstatic with the results. "It is fantastic. I am so excited for the patients. There is finally hope for their future," lead researcher, Dr Fred Poordad said in a written statement. "Eventually the virus is extinguished."
More tests, and tests on other strains of the illness, are expected.
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