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Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology
Volume 11, Issue 7, Pages 579-582
Original Article

A Multicentre Randomized Controlled Trial of Recombinant Interferon-Alpha-2a in the Treatment of Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C

Masafumi Komatsu,1,3 Tsuyoshi Ono,1 Ko Nakajima,1 Itaru Toyoshima,1 Mitsuro Chiba,1 Osamu Masamune,2,8 Shunji Ohkubo, Tsukasa Yoshida,3 Hitoshi Yagisawa,1,4 Kanji Komatsu,5 Hideki Wakamatsu,5 Nobuo Yamada,6 Hiroyuki Watanabe,1 Tsuyoshi Mukojima,1,7 and Mitsuo Goto1

1First Department of Internal Medicine, Akita University School of Medicine, Akita, Japan
2First Department of Internal Medicine, Hiraka General Hospital, Yokote, Japan
3Second Department of Internal Medicine, Akita City Hospital, Akita, Japan
4Department of Internal Medicine, Akita Rosai Hospital, Oodate, Japan
5Department of Gastroenterology, Honjyo Daiici Hospital, Honjyo, Japan
6Department of Gastroenterology, Yuri Kumiai General Hospital, Honjyo, Japan
7Department of Gastroenterology, Akita Adult Disease Medical Center, Akita, Japan
8Second Department of Internal Medicine, Ogachi Central Hospital, Yuzawa, Japan

Received 13 November 1996; Accepted 3 June 1997

Copyright © 1997 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Sixty-one chronic hepatitis C patients were randomly assigned to receive either 6x106 or 9x106 U of recombinant interferon-alpha-2a (IFNα-2a) six days a week for the first two weeks of treatment, followed in both cases by 6x106 U three days a week for the next 22 weeks. In the low dose group, 11 patients showed a complete response maintained for at least six months, 12 responded but then relapsed and nine did not respond; the corresponding figures in the high dose group were 10, 15 and five patients, respectively. The differences between groups are not statistically significant. Thus, this study provides no evidence of therapeutic benefit from increasing the initial dose of IFNα-2a. In both treatment groups, complete responders had significantly lower pretreatment viral titres than nonresponders and were significantly more likely to be infected by type 2a versus type 1b virus.