New Therapy for Hepatitis C is Proposed

SALT LAKE CITY, April 5 (UPI) — U.S. scientists say they’ve discovered a potential new treatment for hepatitis C that might prevent the virus from replicating.

The researchers said they found binding of a potent inhibitor of the hepatitis C virus to the genetic material of the virus causes a major conformational change. And that change, they said, provides a potential new target for structure-based design of new hepatitis C treatments.

“The available therapies for hepatitis C infection have limited effectiveness, with less than a 50 percent response,” said University of Utah Professor Darrell Davis, the study’s lead author. “However, small molecules that inhibit viral replication have been reported and they represent potential opportunities for new, more effective (hepatitis C) treatments.”

The study that included scientists from Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. of Carlsbad, Calif., appeared in the March 29 early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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