16. March 2012 14:03
Janssen UK’s Incivo (telaprevir) has been recommended in final draft guidance as a treatment option for genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C (CHC) in adults with compensated liver disease.
NICE has recommended the treatment in combination with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin after it demonstrated significant improvements in sustained virological response rates.
Meindert Boysen, Programme Director Technology at NICE, said Incivo “represents a major benefit for people with chronic hepatitis C”.
It was estimated that in 2009 around 250,000 people in England and Wales were carrying the hepatitis C virus. Approximately 146,000 people were chronically infected.
Genotype 1 is the most common subtype of hepatitis C in England and Wales, affecting between 40% and 50%. It is also the subtype most resistant to treatment.
Poor diagnosis and compliance rates coupled with a high incidence of new infection means that CHC presents a major public health issue, despite the availability of treatments.
The final draft guidance recommends Incivo as an option for the treatment of genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C in adults with compensated liver disease who have not received treatment, or in whom treatment with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin has failed.
Dr Martin Price, External Affairs Director, Janssen UK commented: “We welcome this final appraisal determination from NICE and we expect that genotype-1 hep C patients will now be able to access this treatment which will offer them a greater chance of clearing the hep C virus and potentially a shorter treatment duration than is available with standard treatment.”