HIV and hepatitis C coinfection

J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2008 Jul;23(7 Pt 1):1000-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1746.2008.05489.x.


The significant burden of HIV/hepatitis C virus (HCV) coinfection is increasingly recognized worldwide, and in particular within the Asia-Pacific region. Individuals who are coinfected with both viruses are at risk from accelerated liver disease and consequently cirrhosis, liver failure, and hepatocellular carcinoma. In addition, coinfected individuals may have altered immunological responses to HAART and are at increased risk of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-related hepatotoxicity. Treatment for HCV infection in HIV-infected individuals is with standard pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy, and all HIV/HCV coinfected subjects should undergo suitability for HCV treatment assessment. Response rates to HCV therapy are generally 10-15% lower than in HCV monoinfection, and therapy may be complicated by issues of drug interactions and significant toxicity. However, greater understanding of baseline factors can contribute to better prediction of treatment outcome, and monitoring of on-treatment virological responses increasingly allows individualization of therapy. Where possible, treatment of HCV is often advisable before HAART is required to avoid the issues of drug interactions on HCV therapy and the risk of HAART-related hepatotoxicity. Early diagnosis of both HIV and HCV infection is essential to most effectively manage HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals. New therapies, including HCV protease and polymerase inhibitors, are in development and may widen therapeutic options for HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals into the future.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-HIV Agents / adverse effects
  • Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active
  • Antiviral Agents / adverse effects
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use*
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • Disease Progression
  • Drug Interactions
  • HIV Infections / complications*
  • HIV Infections / diagnosis
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Infections / epidemiology
  • HIV Infections / immunology
  • Hepacivirus / genetics
  • Hepacivirus / immunology
  • Hepatitis C / complications*
  • Hepatitis C / diagnosis
  • Hepatitis C / drug therapy*
  • Hepatitis C / epidemiology
  • Hepatitis C / immunology
  • Hepatitis C Antibodies / blood
  • Humans
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / virology
  • Liver Failure / drug therapy
  • Liver Failure / virology
  • Prevalence
  • RNA, Viral / blood
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Viral Load


  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • Antiviral Agents
  • Hepatitis C Antibodies
  • RNA, Viral