Update on Treatment of Hepatitis B and Prospects for Possible Cure

Bolin Niu, Hie-Won Hann


Since the discovery of the hepatitis B virus (HBV) 50 years ago, its genome sequence, epidemiology, pathogenesis, and hepatocarcinogenesis have been elucidated. The ultimate goal of treating chronic HBV is prevention of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).  With the development of HBV vaccine in the 1980’s, the global prevalence of HBV infection has decreased significantly albeit not uniformly. Currently, there are 400 million HBV carriers worldwide. The natural history of HBV intimately involves the host immune system, and the association between HBV and HCC is well-described. With the development of effective antiviral drugs since 1992, disease progression has been retarded along with the reduced need for liver transplantation.  In addition, antiviral treatments play an important role in special populations, including pregnant women, patients receiving immunosuppressive therapy, and those undergoing treatment for HCC.  Looking to the future, we hope the world would soon witness the cure of hepatitis B. 


hepatitis B treatment, chronic hepatitis B, antiviral therapy, HBV reactivation, HCC, HBV cure, pregnancy and HBV

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