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BACKGROUND - Chronic hepatitis B (CHB) is a major public health concern, particularly in endemic areas like Asia-Pacific. Sustained virologic suppression correlates with regression of histologic fibrosis and cirrhosis.
AIM - This study evaluated efficacy and safety of tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) in Asian patients through 240 weeks of treatment.
METHODS - Post hoc analysis of the Asian subpopulation from two phase 3 clinical studies was performed. Following a 48-week randomized, double-blind evaluation of once-daily TDF versus once-daily adefovir dipivoxil, open-label TDF for up to 240 weeks was evaluated. Patients with both baseline and week 240 liver biopsies were evaluated for histologic changes.
RESULTS - At baseline, 189/641 (29 %) patients randomized were Asian. Sixty-eight percent of Asian patients were male; 50 % were hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg)-positive. At week 240, similar proportions of Asian (88 %) and non-Asian (87 %) patients demonstrated improvement in liver histology, and 19/22 (86 %) Asian patients with baseline cirrhosis were no longer cirrhotic. By modified intent-to-treat analysis, 74 % of Asian patients and 76 % of non-Asian patients had HBV DNA <400 copies/mL at the end of week 240 (P = 0.602). No differences were seen in HBeAg loss or seroconversion in Asian versus non-Asian patients. No Asian patient experienced hepatitis B surface antigen loss. Safety and tolerability of TDF through week 240, including changes in renal function and in hip/spine bone mineral density (from weeks 192 to 240), were comparable between Asian and non-Asian patients.
CONCLUSIONS - Long-term virologic and histologic efficacy and safety of TDF are comparable in Asian and non-Asian CHB patients.
BACKGROUND - Silent cerebral infarcts are the most common neurologic injury in children with sickle cell anemia and are associated with the recurrence of an infarct (stroke or silent cerebral infarct). We tested the hypothesis that the incidence of the recurrence of an infarct would be lower among children who underwent regular blood-transfusion therapy than among those who received standard care.
METHODS - In this randomized, single-blind clinical trial, we randomly assigned children with sickle cell anemia to receive regular blood transfusions (transfusion group) or standard care (observation group). Participants were between 5 and 15 years of age, with no history of stroke and with one or more silent cerebral infarcts on magnetic resonance imaging and a neurologic examination showing no abnormalities corresponding to these lesions. The primary end point was the recurrence of an infarct, defined as a stroke or a new or enlarged silent cerebral infarct.
RESULTS - A total of 196 children (mean age, 10 years) were randomly assigned to the observation or transfusion group and were followed for a median of 3 years. In the transfusion group, 6 of 99 children (6%) had an end-point event (1 had a stroke, and 5 had new or enlarged silent cerebral infarcts). In the observation group, 14 of 97 children (14%) had an end-point event (7 had strokes, and 7 had new or enlarged silent cerebral infarcts). The incidence of the primary end point in the transfusion and observation groups was 2.0 and 4.8 events, respectively, per 100 years at risk, corresponding to an incidence rate ratio of 0.41 (95% confidence interval, 0.12 to 0.99; P=0.04).
CONCLUSIONS - Regular blood-transfusion therapy significantly reduced the incidence of the recurrence of cerebral infarct in children with sickle cell anemia. (Funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and others; Silent Cerebral Infarct Multi-Center Clinical Trial ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00072761, and Current Controlled Trials number, ISRCTN52713285.).
BACKGROUND - Insufficient clinical data exist to determine whether provision of oral nutritional supplements during dialysis can improve survival in hypoalbuminemic maintenance hemodialysis patients.
STUDY DESIGN - Retrospective matched-cohort study.
SETTING & PARTICIPANTS - All oral nutritional supplement program-eligible in-center maintenance hemodialysis patients with albumin level ≤3.5 g/dL in quarter 4 of 2009 without oral nutritional supplements in the prior 90 days at Fresenius Medical Care, North America facilities.
QUALITY IMPROVEMENT PLAN - Monitored intradialytic oral nutritional supplements were provided to eligible maintenance hemodialysis patients upon physician order, to continue for a year or until serum albumin level was ≥4.0 g/dL.
OUTCOME - Mortality (including deaths and withdrawals), followed up until December 31, 2010.
MEASUREMENTS - Both an intention-to-treat (ITT) and an as-treated analysis was performed using a 1:1 geographic region and propensity score-matched study population (using case-mix, laboratory test, access type, 30-day prior hospitalization, and incident patient status) comparing patients treated with intradialytic oral nutritional supplements with usual-care patients. Cox models were constructed, unadjusted and adjusted for facility standardized mortality ratio and case-mix and laboratory variables.
RESULTS - The ITT and as-treated analyses both showed lower mortality in the oral nutritional supplement group. The conservative ITT models with 5,227 matched pairs had 40% of controls subsequently receiving oral nutritional supplements after January 1, 2010 (because many physicians delayed participation), with comparative death rates of 30.1% versus 30.4%. The corresponding as-treated (excluding crossovers) death rates for 4,289 matched pairs were 30.9% versus 37.3%. The unadjusted ITT mortality HR for oral nutritional supplement use was 0.95 (95% CI, 0.88-1.01), and the adjusted HR was 0.91 (95% CI, 0.85-0.98); the corresponding as-treated HRs were 0.71 (95% CI, 0.66-0.76) and 0.66 (95% CI, 0.61-0.71) before and after adjustment, respectively.
LIMITATIONS - Limited capture of oral nutritional supplement intake outside the facility and potential residual confounding from unmeasured variables, such as dietary intake.
CONCLUSIONS - Maintenance hemodialysis patients with albumin levels ≤3.5 g/dL who received monitored intradialytic oral nutritional supplements showed survival significantly better than similar matched patient controls, with the as-treated analysis highlighting the potentially large effect of this strategy in clinical practice.
Copyright © 2012 National Kidney Foundation, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - Treatment of latent Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection is an essential component of tuberculosis control and elimination. The current standard regimen of isoniazid for 9 months is efficacious but is limited by toxicity and low rates of treatment completion.
METHODS - We conducted an open-label, randomized noninferiority trial comparing 3 months of directly observed once-weekly therapy with rifapentine (900 mg) plus isoniazid (900 mg) (combination-therapy group) with 9 months of self-administered daily isoniazid (300 mg) (isoniazid-only group) in subjects at high risk for tuberculosis. Subjects were enrolled from the United States, Canada, Brazil, and Spain and followed for 33 months. The primary end point was confirmed tuberculosis, and the noninferiority margin was 0.75%.
RESULTS - In the modified intention-to-treat analysis, tuberculosis developed in 7 of 3986 subjects in the combination-therapy group (cumulative rate, 0.19%) and in 15 of 3745 subjects in the isoniazid-only group (cumulative rate, 0.43%), for a difference of 0.24 percentage points. Rates of treatment completion were 82.1% in the combination-therapy group and 69.0% in the isoniazid-only group (P<0.001). Rates of permanent drug discontinuation owing to an adverse event were 4.9% in the combination-therapy group and 3.7% in the isoniazid-only group (P=0.009). Rates of investigator-assessed drug-related hepatotoxicity were 0.4% and 2.7%, respectively (P<0.001).
CONCLUSIONS - The use of rifapentine plus isoniazid for 3 months was as effective as 9 months of isoniazid alone in preventing tuberculosis and had a higher treatment-completion rate. Long-term safety monitoring will be important. (Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; PREVENT TB ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00023452.).
BACKGROUND - Phase 1 and 2 clinical trials of the BRAF kinase inhibitor vemurafenib (PLX4032) have shown response rates of more than 50% in patients with metastatic melanoma with the BRAF V600E mutation.
METHODS - We conducted a phase 3 randomized clinical trial comparing vemurafenib with dacarbazine in 675 patients with previously untreated, metastatic melanoma with the BRAF V600E mutation. Patients were randomly assigned to receive either vemurafenib (960 mg orally twice daily) or dacarbazine (1000 mg per square meter of body-surface area intravenously every 3 weeks). Coprimary end points were rates of overall and progression-free survival. Secondary end points included the response rate, response duration, and safety. A final analysis was planned after 196 deaths and an interim analysis after 98 deaths.
RESULTS - At 6 months, overall survival was 84% (95% confidence interval [CI], 78 to 89) in the vemurafenib group and 64% (95% CI, 56 to 73) in the dacarbazine group. In the interim analysis for overall survival and final analysis for progression-free survival, vemurafenib was associated with a relative reduction of 63% in the risk of death and of 74% in the risk of either death or disease progression, as compared with dacarbazine (P<0.001 for both comparisons). After review of the interim analysis by an independent data and safety monitoring board, crossover from dacarbazine to vemurafenib was recommended. Response rates were 48% for vemurafenib and 5% for dacarbazine. Common adverse events associated with vemurafenib were arthralgia, rash, fatigue, alopecia, keratoacanthoma or squamous-cell carcinoma, photosensitivity, nausea, and diarrhea; 38% of patients required dose modification because of toxic effects.
CONCLUSIONS - Vemurafenib produced improved rates of overall and progression-free survival in patients with previously untreated melanoma with the BRAF V600E mutation. (Funded by Hoffmann-La Roche; BRIM-3 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01006980.).