Response of pre-core mutant chronic hepatitis B infection to lamivudine
Article first published online: 6 JUN 2000
Copyright © 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Journal of Medical Virology
Volume 61, Issue 3, pages 398–402, July 2000
How to Cite
Rizzetto, M., Volpes, R. and Smedile, A. (2000), Response of pre-core mutant chronic hepatitis B infection to lamivudine. J. Med. Virol., 61: 398–402. doi: 10.1002/1096-9071(200007)61:3<398::AID-JMV20>3.0.CO;2-E
- Issue published online: 6 JUN 2000
- Article first published online: 6 JUN 2000
- Manuscript Accepted: 2 FEB 2000
- YMDD variant;
- nucleoside analogue;
- liver histology
The proportion of chronic liver disease associated with the pre-core mutant of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is increasing, particularly in Mediterranean Europe and in Asia. The pre-core mutant HBV is unable to produce hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg), so that patients with this variant do not present with HBV characterised by HBeAg in the serum. Pre-core mutant chronic hepatitis B infection usually proceeds to serious liver disease. Wild-type HBV infection may be mild and respond relatively well to interferon (IFN) alpha therapy, but IFN alpha is not an effective therapeutic option in pre-core mutant hepatitis B infection and new therapeutic options are needed. Clinical data show that lamivudine is an effective treatment for patients with pre-core mutant hepatitis B. There is profound suppression of HBV replication and improvement in indicators of liver disease in most patients. In conclusion, lamivudine is suitable for treatment of a wide range of patients with chronic hepatitis B, including those with pre-core mutant HBV infection. J. Med. Virol. 61:398–402, 2000. © 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.