Antiviral efficacy of entecavir in nucleos(t)ide-naïve patients of Black/African descent with chronic hepatitis B



This single-arm, open-label, descriptive study assessed the efficacy and safety of entecavir (ETV) in nucleos(t)ide-naïve Black/African American patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB), a patient population underrepresented in ETV registration trials. Forty patients with HBeAg(+) or HBeAg(−) compensated CHB of self-described Black/African American race received ETV 0.5 mg daily for 52 weeks; 37 patients completed 52 weeks of treatment. At Week 48, 29/40 (72.5%, noncompleter = failure) patients achieved the primary endpoint of HBV DNA <50 IU/mL. Rates for HBeAg loss (11/22; 50%) and HBeAg seroconversion (9/22; 41%) were high, possibly due to the high HBV genotype A prevalence (70%). No patient experienced virological breakthrough. Samples for resistance testing were available in 6/8 patients with HBV DNA >50 IU/mL at Week 48 or last on-treatment visit. No ETV resistance was detected. The safety profile of ETV was consistent with that observed in ETV registration trials. This study shows that in Black/African American patients with CHB, ETV was well tolerated and demonstrated comparable antiviral efficacy to that observed in White and Asian patients in ETV Phase III studies.