PRINCETON, N.J., June 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Pharmasset, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRUS) announced today the addition of three treatment cohorts to the ELECTRON trial of PSI-7977, a nucleotide analog polymerase inhibitor, for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C (HCV). The rapid and consistent antiviral effects and high barrier to resistance demonstrated with PSI-7977 to date provide the rationale for additional exploratory regimens in this setting. This amendment will add one arm exploring 12 weeks of PSI-7977 monotherapy (without peginterferon and ribavirin) and two arms of interferon-sparing therapy: one for 8 weeks of PSI-7977 plus peginterferon and ribavirin (Peg-IFN/RBV) in patients with HCV genotype 2 (GT2) or 3 (GT3) and one for 12 weeks of PSI-7977 plus Peg-IFN/RBV in patients with HCV genotype 1 (GT1) prior null responses.
"The combination data reported at EASL demonstrated that SVRs were achievable with two oral DAAs in the absence of peginterferon and ribavirin," stated Bill Symonds, PharmD, Pharmasset's Senior Vice President of Clinical Pharmacology and Translational Medicine, "We continue to explore the potential for removing peginterferon and ribavirin from the HCV treatment regimen. Given the encouraging data we are seeing in ELECTRON, we have decided to expand the study to investigate PSI-7977 monotherapy, as well as shorter treatment regimens based on the promising data we reported at EASL from PROTON."
Pharmasset anticipates reporting results from the first four arms of the trial (n=40) during the second half of 2011. We have submitted a number of abstracts to the 2011 American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) meeting, including data from the ELECTRON and PROTON trials.
About the Trial
The ELECTRON trial is an exploratory study of PSI-7977 for the treatment of chronic HCV infection. Part 1 of the trial is ev