AASLD 2014 - LB-10. A multi-center randomized study on the efficacy and safety of switching to peginterferonα-2a (40KD) for 48 or 96 weeks in HBeAg positive CHB patients with a prior NUC history for 1 to 3 years: an interim analysis of NEW SWITCH study
H.Ren, et al.
Background: Although HBsAg loss has been defined as the ideal endpoint of CHB treatment, it is difficult to achieve with long-term NUC therapy. The aim of the NEW SWITCH study is to evaluate the possibility of NUC- experienced HBeAg positive CHB patients to achieve HBsAg loss with PEG-IFNα-2a (40KD) therapy.
Conclusion: HBeAg positive CHB patients who had partial responses are likely to achieve high HBsAg clearance rate by switching to PEG-IFN therapy, especially for those who have lower qHBsAg level at baseline. Final results of NEW SWITCH are worth attention to further identify the better treatment strategy and the patient population who may benefit more from PEG-IFN therapy.
CARE Faculty Canadian Perspective:
This study tested whether patients with eAg positive HBV and partial responses to NUC therapy can be made to lose sAg by switching to peg-IFN. Interestingly, patients whose HBsAg titres that were <1500IU/mL at the time of switching had an HBsAg loss rate of 31.2% vs 3.6% in those with higher titres. Since this is an interim analysis, we don’t know how durable this sAg loss will be. However, if it is, a sequential approach to NUC-PegIFN therapy for HBV guided by HBsAg titres may maximize HBsAg loss and patient outcomes.