Treating chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) with Viread (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, or TDF) is associated with a lower risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC, the most common form of liver cancer) compared with using Baraclude (entecavir), Medscape reports.

Publishing their findings in JAMA Oncology researchers analyzed data from a nationwide population cohort study of South Koreans with chronic hep B who started treatment for the virus for the first time with Baraclude (11,464 people) or Viread (12,692 people) between January 2012 and December 2014. The data came from the Korean National Health Insurance Service database.

The two groups were well matched. Overall, the cohort members had an average age of 49. Sixty-three percent were male.

During the study’s follow-up period, the liver cancer diagnosis rate per 100 cumulative years of follow-up was 0.64 diagnoses in the Viread group and 1.06 diagnoses in the Baraclude group.

After adjusting the data for various factors, the researchers concluded that compared with taking Baraclude, taking Viread was associated with a 39 percent reduced risk of developing liver cancer and a 23 percent reduced risk of death of any cause or receiving a liver transplant.

The researchers validated their findings with another cohort of people treated with either drug—1,560 took Baraclude and 1,141 took Viread—between January 2010 and December 2016 at the Asian Medical Center in Seoul. They reached similar findings about Viread’s benefits over Baraclude in this population.

To read the Medscape article, click here (free registration with the site is required).

To read the study abstract, click here.