We are committed to easing the burden faced by the many millions of people living with chronic hepatitis B
An estimated 15 million people live with hepatitis B in the World Health Organization European Region, resulting in about 56,000 deaths each year. Most people only discover they have hepatitis B after developing advanced disease.
Current treatments for chronic hepatitis B (CHB) infection interfere with viral replication and can slow the progression to cirrhosis, reduce the incidence of liver cancer and improve long-term survival, but most patients must stay on daily therapy for the rest of their lives and their levels of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) remain elevated.
Our goal is to find a functional cure* for CHB after a finite period of treatment. In addition to avoidance of lifelong management, which is challenging for patients in the long term, a functional cure could help them avoid the stigma often associated with CHB. We are committed to creating a future where CHB will be a thing of the past.
Structure of hepatitis B
Worldwide, hepatitis B causes approximately one death every 30 seconds, mostly from complications, such as cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma
Stigma is a major barrier to successful prevention, diagnosis and treatment for hepatitis B, but this is often unrecognised and unaddressed.It is essential to our research to address feelings of exclusion, isolation and blame as they can impact patients’ treatment decisions and adherence.
*N.B. A functional cure for chronic hepatitis B is defined as sustained, loss of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) with or without seroconversion to hepatitis B surface antibody.
World Health Organization Europe. Hepatitis B Factsheet. Available at: https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/377251/Fact-Sheet-H.... Accessed: December 2020.
WHO. Hepatitis B Key facts. Available: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/hepatitis-b. Accessed: December 2020.
Hepatitis B Foundation. Hepatitis B fast facts. Available at: http://www.hepb.org/assets/Uploads/Hepatitis-B-Fast-Facts-8-28-18-FINAL.pdf. Accessed: December 2020.
WHO Europe. Action plan for the health sector response to viral hepatitis in the WHO European Region. Available at: https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/357236/Hepatitis-97.... Accessed December 2020.