Australian Associated Press (02.01.12) - Thursday, February
The new hepatitis C drug Victrelis (boceprevir) recently won
approval by Australia's Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Scientists report the protease inhibitor is effective against
hepatitis C genotype 1.
"In the last 10 years, there has been little development in
the availability of treatments for hepatitis C, and a
significant proportion of patients fail to respond to current
standard of care," said a statement from Professor Geoff
McCaughan, director of the AW Morrow Gastroenterology and
Liver Center in Sydney. "Victrelis is an approved treatment
that works directly on the hepatitis C virus and prevents it
from replicating and therefore reproducing."
An estimated 200,000 Australians are infected with hepatitis
C, and 20,000 new cases are reported each year. "Hepatitis C
is a huge burden for individuals and is still very heavily
stigmatized, and having another new treatment option marks
progress in the management of patients with the disease," said
At its meeting in March, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
Committee is set to consider whether to list the drug.