Hospices civils de Lyon, Université de Lyon, Service d'hépatologie, Inserm U871, 69003 Lyon, France
Chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infections are associated with the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Effective treatments have been developed for chronic hepatitis B (CHB), significantly reducing morbidity and mortality. The initial treatment for chronic hepatitis B was interferon, studies have shown it benefits for preventing HCC. Five other drugs that belong to the class of nucleos(t)ide analogs (lamivudine, adefovir, entecavir, telbivudine and tenofovir), have also been approved for treatment of CHB in many parts of the world. Therapeutic efficacy can be affected by factors such as the development of adverse effects, poor patient compliance, previous treatment with suboptimal regimens, and inadequate drug exposure, individual genetic variations and infection with drug-resistant viral strains, highlighting the need to pursue basic research into HBV replication and pathogenic mechanism to identify new therapeutic targets, develop novel antiviral agents to prevent drug resistance and decrease the incidence of complications of CHB.