The majority of people with hepatitis C virus (HCV) who received a three-drug treatment under a response-guided protocol were cured after just three weeks, reports.

Publishing their findings in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology, researchers conducted an open-label Phase IIa study of 26 people with genotype 1b of hep C. A bit more than half had been treated before. Most had no fibrosis or mild fibrosis, and none had cirrhosis.

The participants were randomly assigned to receive one of three hep C regimens. Twelve people in Group 1 received Harvoni (ledipasvir/sofosbuvir) and asunaprevir; six people in Group 2 received Sovaldi (sofosbuvir), Daklinza (daclatasvir) and Olysio (simeprevir); and eight people in Group 3 received Sovaldi, Daklinza and asunaprevir.

Those who had a viral load below 500 by the second day of treatment were taken off therapy after three weeks, while the rest were switched to Harvoni and treated for eight to 12 weeks total.

Eighteen participants (69 percent), including six from each group, qualified for three-week treatment. All of them achieved a sustained virologic response 12 weeks after completing therapy (SVR12, considered a cure). Those who did qualify were less likely to begin treatment with a high viral load.

To read the HIVandHepatitis article, click here.

To read the study abstract, click here.