A genotype is a classification of a virus based on the genetic material in the RNA strands of the virus. There are six distinct genotypes of hepatitis C virus in the world with multiple sub-types in each genotype class. The reason chronic hepatitis C is so difficult to treat is because of these multiple distinct genotypes. A patient is usually only infected with one genotype, but each genotype is actually a mixture of closely related viruses called quasi species. These quasi species have the ability to mutate very quickly and become immune to current treatments.
The following table lists the different genotypes of chronic hepatitis C virus and where they are found in the world:
Genotype 2a, 2b, 2c & 2d
Genotype 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d, 3e & 3f
Genotype 4a, 4b, 4c, 4d, 4e, 4f,
4g, 4h, 4i & 4j
Although the table lists the areas of the world where the different genotypes are prevalent, it is possible to have any of the genotypes without actually visiting that country. Blood products can come from any part of the world and before 1991 hepatitis C blood donor screening was not performed. The HCV antibody tests were not developed or put into practice until 1991.
Treatment Response Statistics:
Current data and studies have shown that certain genotypes respond to treatment better than others. Doctors do not decide which patients will be treated based on the genotype they have because some of each genotype will respond to treatment.
HCV genotyping is performed by line probe assay or direct sequencing. Pretreatment HCV genotyping is essential for determining likelihood of treatment response. Patients infected with HCV genotypes 2 and 3 respond more favorably to therapy, with 70% to 80% sustained viral response (SVR) rates, whereas those with genotype 1 (75% of patients infected with HCV in the United States) have an SVR rate of 42% to 51%. Furthermore, treatment for genotypes 2 and 3 can be limited to 24 weeks. Genotype 1 always requires treatment for 48 weeks.
The following table gives some of the statistics of sustained response to treatment with PEG-Intron (Pegylated Interferon alfa 2b) and Ribavirin combination vs genotype:
Dose used for data in the following table: PEG-Intron(Pegylated Interferon alfa 2b) 1.5 ug/kg/wk and Rebetol 800mg/day x 48 weeks
Treatment for Hepatitis C is sometimes relegated to taking the herbal supplement Milk Thistle.
When you watch TV you see all those people that are fit, and then you remember that you are not. You have tried some diets, you tried some drugs as well, but nothing makes you look good and feel good. To maintain a healthy body, you must keep your metabolism in the check. As years go by, the metabolism slows, and that leads to many other medical conditions. But the biggest impact of slow metabolism is on your mental image of yourself. Slow metabolism makes you grumpy because you can’t do things you did just a couple years ago. If you are unsatisfied with yourself, then you must take some steps to change that.
Can we improve our metabolism?
Yes, yes we can and we should. If your metabolism is slow, that means that you burn calories a lot slower than other people. This leads to a build-up of fat which slows your metabolism even more. As you can see, this is a really wicked circle we have here, and if you don’t stop it, then you will never be able to do things other people do.
No matter what kind of metabolism you had in your younger days, it will slow down after the age of 40. But if you take several precautionary steps and keep them up after you go over this age then your metabolism will be at constant peak.
This requires some work, but if you want to feel young all your life, then this will not be hard for you.
Improving the metabolism
There are several things you must do to keep your metabolism in check, and the basic thing to do is to build your muscles. You don’t have to look like models from the pictures and movies, but you do need a bit of muscle on you. The secret is in doing strength training to raise the percentage of muscle in your body.
Do muscle and aerobic exercises
Then you need to do aerobic exercises. But don’t do them half-heartedly because that will do nothing. If you want an effect from these exercises, then you must push yourself to the limit every time you exercise.
Hydration is a key
Drink water, and I mean a lot. Water helps in the processing of calories, so you should drink at least eight glasses of water per day. Drink water before the meal because that will lower the amount of food you eat. You can also gain water from eating fresh fruit and vegetables.
Say no to energy drinks
Energy drinks are a bit controversial subject. Many of the energy drinks that are out there contain taurine that speeds up the metabolism and helps in fat burning.
It is a controversial subject because some people experience problems with anxiety, sleep, and several other conditions after drinking an energy drink.
Don’t be gluttonous, eat smartly
Instead of some ridiculous diets, you should try eating smartly. If you eat twice or three times per day, your metabolism slows down between those meals and that is not good. Instead of doing that, you should have several snacks between the meals. This will result in the smaller amount of food consumed during those meals.