With another new treatment regimen finding approval in the last days of 2014, health care providers find themselves in an era where cure is within reach for a majority of patients and attention must be turned to those still facing hurdles.
In our cover story experts discuss the next frontier in treatment research: vertical transmission. As rates for mother-to-child transmission of other communicable diseases like HIV fall, physicians like Kathleen B. Schwarz, MD, director of the Pediatric Liver Center at Johns Hopkins, call for researchers to focus on minimizing the impact of HCV on infants born to infected mothers.
Next, experts such as Fred Poordad, MD, discuss how direct-acting antivirals are changing the scope of treatment for patients coinfected with both HCV and HIV. Though he and other experts attest to the fact that patients who are coinfected progress more quickly in their disease, the newest medications and combinations thereof are leveling the playing field between patients who are monoinfected and coinfected.
So, in addition to those two unique patient populations, please check out Trend Watch for the latest approval news a timeline of drug approvals in our Drug Pipeline and HCV Rx for a breakdown of information regarding the first single-tablet, once-daily medication for genotype 1. Co-chief Medical Editor Michael S. Saag, MD, then gives his commentary on looking ahead to 2015 offering insight to the milestones seen thus far and the barriers to care that still exist.
Visit Healio.com/HCV and let us know your thoughts on minimizing vertical transmission and treating patients who are coinfected in an era of approvals and drug combinations.
— Katrina Altersitz
Editor in Chief, HCV Next