Real life efficacy and safety of direct-acting antiviral therapy for treatment of patients infected with hepatitis C virus genotypes 1, 2 and 3 in northwest China

World J Gastroenterol. 2019 Nov 28;25(44):6551-6560. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v25.i44.6551.


Background: Regimens involving direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) are recommended for the treatment of infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes 1, 2 and 3. But real-world data is still not enough, especially in Asia.

Aim: To investigate the efficacy and safety of DAA-based regimens in a real-life setting in China.

Methods: This study included 366 patients infected with HCV genotypes 1, 2 and 3, with or without cirrhosis, who were observed between May 2015 and December 2018. They were treated with ledipasvir and sofosbuvir (SOF) (genotype 1) with or without ribavirin (RBV), SOF and RBV (genotype 2), or SOF and daclatasvir (genotype 3), with or without RBV, for 12 or more wk. The participants' sustained virological responses (SVR) at post-treatment week 12 (SVR12) was the primary endpoint. The occurrence of adverse events and drug-drug interactions were recorded.

Results: In the 366 patients, genotype 1 (59.0%) was the most common genotype, followed by genotypes 2 (34.4%) and 3 (6.6%). Liver cirrhosis was diagnosed in 154 (42.1%) patients. Fifty (13.7%) patients were treatment-experienced. Intention-to-treat analysis revealed that SVR12 was 86.3% (316/366). For modified intention-to-treat analysis, SVR12 was achieved in 96.6% of overall patients (316/327), 96.3% in patients with genotype 1, 97.5% in those with genotype 2, and 95.0% in those with genotype 3. Most of the treatment failures were due to lack of follow-up (3 cases had non-responses, 1 had virological breakthrough, 11 relapsed and 36 did not participate in the follow-up). There was no significant difference in SVR between different genotypes and liver statuses (P < 0.05). Patients with lower alanine aminotransferase levels at baseline who achieved an end of treatment response were more likely to achieve SVR12 (P < 0.05). High SVR was observed regardless of age, gender, liver status, alpha-fetoprotein, HCV RNA levels or history of antiviral therapy (P > 0.05 for all). The cumulative hepatocellular carcinoma occurrence and recurrence rate after using the DAAs was 0.9%. Most of the adverse events were mild. We found two cases of special adverse events. One case involved facial and bilateral lower extremity edema, and the other case showed an interesting change in lipid levels while on medication. No severe adverse events were noted.

Conclusion: The DAA-based regimens tested in this study have excellent effectiveness and safety in all patients infected with HCV genotypes 1, 2 and 3, including those with cirrhosis.

Keywords: Direct-acting antiviral agents; Drug-drug interactions; Efficacy; Hepatitis C virus; Real-life experience; Safety.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antiviral Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Antiviral Agents / adverse effects
  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacokinetics
  • China
  • Drug Interactions
  • Drug Therapy, Combination / adverse effects
  • Drug Therapy, Combination / methods
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Hepacivirus / genetics*
  • Hepacivirus / isolation & purification
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / drug therapy*
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / pathology
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / virology
  • Humans
  • Liver Cirrhosis / drug therapy*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / pathology
  • Liver Cirrhosis / virology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sustained Virologic Response


  • Antiviral Agents