Antiviral activity of amantadine in elderly patients with chronic hepatitis C

F. Torre, N. Campo, R. Giusto, F. Ansaldi, G. C. Icardi, A. Picciotto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a worldwide problem of public health. Epidemiological studies have shown a significant higher prevalence of infection in the elderly. Amantadine is an antiviral agent active against the influenza A virus that has been used in cases of chronic hepatitis C. Objectives: To evaluate the antiviral activity and the safety of amantadine (200 mg daily for 6 months) in elderly patients with chronic hepatitis C. Methods: The study group consisted of 23 consecutive patients over 65 years suffering from chronic hepatitis C. Aminotransferase (ALT) levels were tested at baseline, at 15 days and then monthly until the end of therapy. HCV genotype was determined at baseline. A quantitative HCV-RNA measurement was performed at baseline, at 15 days and at the 1st, 3rd and 6th month of treatment. Results: 13 males and 10 females were enrolled (mean age 70.1 ± 3.4 years; range: 65-75). The mean ALT levels did not change significantly during therapy except in 1 patient subsequently returned normal. The HCV-RNA remained detectable in all patients, but a significant difference in response was observed in patients infected by genotype 1b. Conclusions: Our results confirm the antiviral activity of amantadine against HCV, mainly for genotype 1b with initial high viral load. No consistent effects on aminotransferases were observed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)330-333
Number of pages4
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Amantadine
  • Chronic hepatitis C
  • Elderly
  • HCV genotype

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing


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