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Original article

Viral suppression is comparable with 0.5 mg and 1.0 mg daily doses of entecavir in treatment-naive HBV-related decompensated cirrhosis

Amit Goel, Sumit Rungta, Prashant Verma, Abhai Verma, Ajay Narayan Verma, Praveer Rai, Rakesh Aggarwal

Corresponding author name: Rakesh Aggarwal
Corresponding author e-mail: aggarwal.ra@gmail.com

Citation: Antiviral Therapy 2020; 25:267-273
doi: 10.3851/IMP3375

Date accepted: 26 November 2020
Date published online: 06 January 2021


Background: For patients with HBV infection who have decompensated cirrhosis (DC), a higher dose (1.0 mg/day) of entecavir is recommended than that used for those with compensated disease (0.5 mg/day), though with very little supporting data. We therefore compared the viral suppression achieved with 0.5 mg/day and 1.0 mg/day of entecavir in patients with HBV-related DC (NCT03345498).

Methods: Treatment-naive patients with HBV-related DC and serum HBV DNA titre exceeding 100,000 IU/ml received either dose of entecavir for 24 weeks. HBV DNA concentration was measured in blood specimens collected at baseline and after 2, 4, 8, 12 and 24 weeks of entecavir treatment.

Results: Participants in the 0.5 mg/day (n=13) and 1.0 mg/day (n=16) groups had similar baseline hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) positivity rates (12/13 and 12/16; P=0.34) and median (range) log10 serum HBV DNA levels (6.81 [5.01–8.12] and 7.45 [5.24–8.65]; P=0.17). The two doses led to similar reductions in serum HBV DNA levels after 2, 4, 8, 12 and 24 weeks of entecavir administration. At 24 weeks, 3 of the 13 patients receiving 0.5 mg/day and 1 of the 16 patients receiving 1.0 mg/day of entecavir had undetectable serum HBV DNA. Serum albumin level showed significant and similar improvement at the end of 24 weeks in the two groups.

Conclusions: Treatment-naive patients with HBV-related DC can be treated with entecavir in a 0.5 mg/day dose instead of the higher 1.0 mg/day dose, without compromising the degree of virological suppression. ClincialTrials.gov number NCT03345498.


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