Background: A genome-wide association study revealed an association between variants of the inosine triphosphatase (ITPA) gene and ribavirin (RBV)-induced anaemia. The aim of this study was to replicate this finding in an independent Japanese cohort and to define a method to allow pretreatment prediction of anaemia in combination with other factors. Methods: Genotype 1b chronic hepatitis C patients (n=132) treated with pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN)-α and RBV for 48 weeks were genotyped for ITPA rs1127354 and examined for anaemia and treatment outcome. Results: Variants of the ITPA gene protected against severe anaemia throughout the 48-week treatment period and were associated with lower incidence of anaemia-related RBV dose reduction. A combination of the ITPA genotype with baseline haemoglobin (Hb) and creatinine clearance (CLcr) levels predicted severe anaemia with high accuracy (90% sensitivity and 62% specificity). Among a subset of patients with the IL28B genotype of TT at rs8099917, patients with variants of the ITPA gene were associated with a higher rate of receiving >80% of the expected RBV dose, a higher rate of sustained virological response (SVR), and a lower rate of relapse. Conclusions: The variants of the ITPA gene, which could protect against haemolytic anaemia and RBV dose reduction, were associated with a high rate of SVR by standard PEG-IFN and RBV therapy in a subset of Japanese patients with the favourable TT genotype at rs8099917 of IL28B. A combination of ITPA genetic polymorphisms with baseline Hb and CLcr levels further improves the predictive accuracy of severe anaemia.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases