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EMA recommends two AbbVie treatments for hepatitis C

Exviera and Viekirax backed for use in Europe
AbbVie logo

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has recommended two AbbVie drugs for the treatment of hepatitis C in adults.

AbbVie's Exviera (dasabuvir) and combination treatment Viekirax (ombitasvir, paritaprevir and ritonavir) both received backing from the EMA's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) in its latest round of opinions published at the end of last week.

The drugs are part of a new generation of medicines for chronic hepatitis C infection that have high cure rates and improved convenience for patients, reshaping the way the disease is treated.

Both Exviera and Viekirax block the action of proteins that are essential for HCV replication. Exviera targets the protein NS5B while Viekirax targets the proteins NS5A and NS3/4A.

Over the last year, the EMA has recommended marketing authorisations for four new medicines for the treatment of HCV, including GSK's Revolade (eltrombopag) and Janssen's Olysio (simeprevir).

Leading the field though is Gilead Sciences, which is breaking records with its drug Sovaldi (sofosbuvir), while Harvoni – a combination of Sovaldi and ledipasvir – is also set for big success.

The addition of AbbVie's two treatments will provide a further option for patients with hepatitis C, which remains a European health challenge, affecting between 0.4% and 3.5% of the population in different EU member states. It is the most common single cause of liver transplantation in the EU.

24th November 2014

From: Sales, Regulatory

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