Publications by authors named "Pham Thi Thu Thuy"

9 Publications

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Contextual and individual factors associated with knowledge, awareness and attitude on liver diseases: A large-scale Asian study.

J Viral Hepat 2021 Nov 24. Epub 2021 Nov 24.

Kantar Health, Singapore, Singapore.

There are limited data to provide better understanding of the knowledge/awareness of general population towards liver health in Asia. We sought to identify the knowledge gaps and attitudes towards liver health and liver diseases as well as evaluate associated individual-level and macro-level factors based on contextual analysis. An online survey assessing knowledge, awareness and attitudes towards liver health and disease was conducted among 7500 respondents across 11 countries/territories in Asia. A liver index was created to measure the respondents' knowledge level and the degree of awareness and attitudes. Multilevel logistic regression was performed to identify individual factors and contextual effects that were associated with liver index. The overall liver index (0-100-point scale) was 62.4 with 6 countries/territories' liver indices greater than this. In the multilevel model, the inclusion of geographical information could explain for 9.6% of the variation. Residing in a country/territory with higher HBV prevalence (80% IOR: 1.20-2.79) or higher HCV death rate (80% IOR: 1.35-3.13) increased the individual probability of obtaining a high overall liver index. Individual factors like age, gender, education, household income, disease history and health screening behaviour were also associated with liver index (all p-values<0.001). The overall liver index was positively associated with the two macro-level factors viz. HBV prevalence and HCV death rate. There is a need to formulate policies especially in regions of lower HBV prevalence and HCV death rate to further improve the knowledge, awareness and attitudes of the general public towards liver diseases.
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November 2021

An expert review on the use of tenofovir alafenamide for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus infection in Asia.

J Gastroenterol 2020 Sep 14;55(9):811-823. Epub 2020 Jul 14.

PMC, Allied and DHQ Hospital, Faisalabad, Pakistan.

Asia has intermediate-to-high prevalence and high morbidity of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. The use of guideline-recommended nucleos(t)ide analogs with high barrier to resistance, such as entecavir (ETV), tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF), and tenofovir alafenamide (TAF), is one of the key interventions for curbing HBV infection and associated morbidity in Asia. However, there are some challenges to the use of ETV and TDF; while ETV is associated with high resistance in lamivudine (LAM)-exposed (especially LAM-refractory) patients; bone and renal safety issues are a major concern with TDF. Hence, a panel of twenty-eight expert hepatologists from Asia convened, reviewed the literature, and developed the current expert opinion-based review article for the use of TAF in the resource-constrained settings in Asia. This article provides a comprehensive review of two large, phase 3, double-blind, randomized controlled trials of TAF versus TDF in HBeAg-negative (study 0108) and HBeAg-positive (study 0110) chronic HBV patients (> 70% Asians). These studies revealed as follows: (1) non-inferiority for the proportion of patients who had HBV DNA < 29 IU/mL; (2) significantly high rate of normalization of alanine aminotransferase levels; (3) no incidence of resistance; and (4) significantly better bone and renal safety, with TAF vs. TDF up to 144 weeks. Considering the benefits of TAF, the expert panel proposed recommendations for optimizing the use of TAF in Asia, along with guidance on specific patient groups at risk of renal or bone disease suitable for TAF therapy. The guidance provided in this article may help clinicians optimize the use of TAF in Asia.
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September 2020

International Liver Transplantation Society Asian Consensus on the Management of Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Resource Limited Setting-From Noncirrhotic to Decompensated Disease and After Liver Transplantation.

Transplantation 2019 04;103(4):733-746

Department of Gastroenterology, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, India.

Background: The population of Asia exceeds 4.4 billion people. Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in Asia is characterized by specific distribution of genotypes, lack of access to specific therapeutic agents, relatively high cost of treatment, and lack of experienced healthcare providers. Clear consensus on the diagnosis, management, and monitoring of HCV infection specific to the Asian region is a major unmet need. The consensus guidelines documents that have been published to date by major medical societies presume access to an array of direct acting antiviral agents and diagnostic tests that are not broadly applicable to resource limited settings, including Asia.

Methods: To address the lack of an Asia-specific set of HCV treatment guidelines, we assembled a panel of 15 HCV experts in the field of hepatology from India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Pakistan, Philippines, and Mongolia convened in April 2017 to review the updated literature and provide recommendations on the diagnosis and management of chronic HCV infection that reflects local conditions.

Results: An evidence-based comprehensive compilation of the literature supported by the graded recommendations from the expert panel for the optimization of the diagnosis, pretreatment, on treatment, and posttreatment assessments, and management of chronic HCV infection has been presented in this article.

Conclusions: With the evolving treatment landscape and addition of several new direct-acting antiviral agents and combination regimens into the therapeutic armamentarium, the current article may serve as a guide to the clinicians in optimizing the diagnosis and treatment selection for the management of chronic HCV infection in resource-limited settings.
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April 2019

Frequency of hepatitis B surface antigen variants (HBsAg) in hepatitis B virus genotype B and C infected East- and Southeast Asian patients: Detection by the Elecsys HBsAg II assay.

J Clin Virol 2018 06 5;103:48-56. Epub 2018 Apr 5.

Bioscientia Institute for Medical Diagnostics GmbH, Ingelheim, Germany. Electronic address:

Background: To avoid false negative results, hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) assays need to detect samples with mutations in the immunodominant 'a' determinant region, which vary by ethnographic region.

Objective: We evaluated the prevalence and type of HBsAg mutations in a hepatitis B virus (HBV)-infected East- and Southeast Asian population, and the diagnostic performance of the Elecsys HBsAg II Qualitative assay.

Study Design: We analyzed 898 samples from patients with HBV infection from four sites (China [Beijing and Guangzhou], Korea and Vietnam). HBsAg mutations were detected and sequenced using highly sensitive ultra-deep sequencing and compared between the first (amino acids 124-137) and second (amino acids 139-147) loops of the 'a' determinant region using the Elecsys HBsAg II Qualitative assay.

Results: Overall, 237 distinct amino acid mutations in the major hydrophilic region were identified; mutations were present in 660 of 898 HBV-infected patient samples (73.5%). Within the pool of 237 distinct mutations, the majority of the amino acid mutations were found in HBV genotype C (64.8%). We identified 25 previously unknown distinct mutations, mostly prevalent in genotype C-infected Korean patients (n = 18) followed by Chinese (n = 12) patients. All 898 samples were correctly identified by the Elecsys HBsAg II Qualitative assay.

Conclusions: We observed 237 distinct (including 25 novel) mutations, demonstrating the complexity of HBsAg variants in HBV-infected East- and Southeast Asian patients. The Elecsys HBsAg II Qualitative assay can reliably detect HBV-positive samples and is suitable for routine diagnostic use in East and Southeast Asia.
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June 2018

Sofosbuvir-ledipasvir with or without ribavirin for chronic hepatitis C genotype-1 and 6: real-world experience in Vietnam.

Antivir Ther 2018 ;23(5):415-423

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

Background: Therapy with sofosbuvir-ledipasvir (SOF-LDV) has been very effective in chronic HCV genotype-1 in clinical trials and several real-world cohorts. However, the safety and efficacy data of SOF-LDV for HCV genotype-6 is quite limited.

Methods: This open-label, clinical experience evaluated the safety and efficacy of SOF-LDV with or without ribavirin (RBV) for 12-24 weeks in patients with HCV genotype-1 (n=356) and genotype-6 (n=175) in Vietnam between September 2015 and May 2017.

Results: Among 539 patients evaluated for therapy, 531 patients completed treatment with either SOF-LDV for 12 weeks (n=284); SOF-LDV + RBV for 12 weeks (n=109); SOF-LDV for 24 weeks (n=36); or SOF-LDV + RBV for 24 weeks (n=102). 45% were male with a mean age of 56.3 (range 20-87) years. The mean HCV RNA was 4,370,000 IU/ml and 72.7% had high viral load of >800,000 IU/ml. 17.3% failed prior interferon-based therapy and 52.5% had advanced fibrosis (F3-4) as noted by transient elastography. The overall sustained virological response (SVR12) rate was 99.6% (529/531). Virological relapses occurred in two patients with genotype-1 in the SOF-LDV for 12 weeks and SOF-LDV + RBV for 24 weeks treatment groups. There was no significant difference in demographic data and treatment outcomes between patients with genotype-1 versus 6. Adverse events were mild with all SOF-LDV regimens, but appeared to be more common with 24-week treatment groups.

Conclusions: SOF-LDV with or without RBV was highly effective and safe in Vietnamese patients with HCV genotype-1 and 6.
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September 2019

Ultra-deep sequencing reveals high prevalence and broad structural diversity of hepatitis B surface antigen mutations in a global population.

PLoS One 2017 4;12(5):e0172101. Epub 2017 May 4.

Bioscientia Institute for Medical Diagnostics, Ingelheim, Germany.

The diversity of the hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) has a significant impact on the performance of diagnostic screening tests and the clinical outcome of hepatitis B infection. Neutralizing or diagnostic antibodies against the HBsAg are directed towards its highly conserved major hydrophilic region (MHR), in particular towards its "a" determinant subdomain. Here, we explored, on a global scale, the genetic diversity of the HBsAg MHR in a large, multi-ethnic cohort of randomly selected subjects with HBV infection from four continents. A total of 1553 HBsAg positive blood samples of subjects originating from 20 different countries across Africa, America, Asia and central Europe were characterized for amino acid variation in the MHR. Using highly sensitive ultra-deep sequencing, we found 72.8% of the successfully sequenced subjects (n = 1391) demonstrated amino acid sequence variation in the HBsAg MHR. This indicates that the global variation frequency in the HBsAg MHR is threefold higher than previously reported. The majority of the amino acid mutations were found in the HBV genotypes B (28.9%) and C (25.4%). Collectively, we identified 345 distinct amino acid mutations in the MHR. Among these, we report 62 previously unknown mutations, which extends the worldwide pool of currently known HBsAg MHR mutations by 22%. Importantly, topological analysis identified the "a" determinant upstream flanking region as the structurally most diverse subdomain of the HBsAg MHR. The highest prevalence of "a" determinant region mutations was observed in subjects from Asia, followed by the African, American and European cohorts, respectively. Finally, we found that more than half (59.3%) of all HBV subjects investigated carried multiple MHR mutations. Together, this worldwide ultra-deep sequencing based genotyping study reveals that the global prevalence and structural complexity of variation in the hepatitis B surface antigen have, to date, been significantly underappreciated.
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September 2017

A randomized trial of 48 versus 24 weeks of combination pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy in genotype 6 chronic hepatitis C.

J Hepatol 2012 May 17;56(5):1012-1018. Epub 2012 Jan 17.

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA. Electronic address:

Background & Aims: Genotype 6 chronic hepatitis C (HCV) is encountered predominantly in Southeast Asia and data on optimal treatment strategy is limited. This study was aimed at assessing the rate and predictors of sustained virological response (SVR) in genotype 6 chronic HCV following 48 and 24 weeks of pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy.

Methods: This investigator-initiated, open-label randomized trial was conducted in Vietnam between 2008 and 2010. One hundred and five treatment-naïve HCV genotype 6 patients were randomized to either 48-week (N=70) or 24-week (N=35) duration of pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) alfa-2a 180 mcg/week and ribavirin (RBV) 15mg/kg/day; 92 patients completed the study (63 in the 48-week and 29 in the 24-week group, respectively). Primary outcome was sustained virological response (SVR) as intention-to-treat analysis.

Results: There was no statistical difference in SVR between 48-week and 24-week treated groups (71% vs. 60%, respectively; p=0.24). In the 48-week and 24-week treatment groups, 81% and 80% of cases achieved rapid virological response (RVR) (p=0.86), and 86% and 80% achieved complete early virological response (p=0.45). Among those patients with RVR, SVR was in 86% (48-weeks), and 75% (24-weeks) of cases, whereas following non-RVR, only 8% of cases had an SVR with 48-week treatment duration.

Conclusions: Overall, RVR was achieved in the majority of genotype 6 patients and, in those patients, similar and high rates of SVR were noted following 24-week and 48-week therapy. This observation, however, needs validation in a larger study to demonstrate non-inferiority of the shorter duration therapy. In non-RVR patients, even 48-week therapy achieved low SVR rates.
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May 2012

Evaluation of an algorithm for integrated management of childhood illness in an area of Vietnam with dengue transmission.

Trop Med Int Health 2004 May;9(5):573-81

Dong Nai Paediatric Centre, Bien Hoa, Vietnam.

Objectives: To determine whether nurses, using the WHO/UNICEF algorithm for integrated management of childhood illness (IMCI), modified to include dengue infection, satisfactorily classified children in an area endemic for dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF).

Methods: Nurses assessed and classified, using the modified IMCI algorithm, a systematic sample of 1250 children aged 2 months to 10 years (n = 1250) presenting to a paediatric hospital in Dong Nai Province, Vietnam. Their classification was compared with that of a paediatrician, blind to the result of the nurses' assessment, which could be modified in the light of simple investigations, e.g. dengue serology.

Results: In children aged 2-59 months (n = 859), the nurses were able to classify, using the modified chart, the presenting illness in >99% of children and found more than one classification in 70%. For the children with pneumonia, diarrhoea, dengue shock syndrome, severe DHF and severe disease requiring urgent admission, the nurse's classification was >60% sensitive and >85% specific compared with that of the paediatrician. For the nurse's classification of DHF the specificity was 50-55% for the children <5 years and in children with definitive dengue serology. Alterations in the DHF algorithm improved specificity at the expense of sensitivity.

Conclusion: Using the IMCI chart, nurses classified appropriately many of the major clinical problems in sick children <5 years in southern Vietnam. However, further modifications will be required in the fever section, particularly for dengue. The impact of using the IMCI chart in peripheral health stations remains to be evaluated.
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May 2004

Clinical diagnosis and assessment of severity of confirmed dengue infections in Vietnamese children: is the world health organization classification system helpful?

Am J Trop Med Hyg 2004 Feb;70(2):172-9

Dong Nai Paediatric Centre, Dong Nai Province, Bien Hoa, Vietnam.

Classification of dengue using the current World Health Organization (WHO) system is not straightforward. In a large prospective study of pediatric dengue, no clinical or basic laboratory parameters clearly differentiated between children with and without dengue, although petechiae and hepatomegaly were independently associated with the diagnosis. Among the 712 dengue-infected children there was considerable overlap in the major clinical features. Mucosal bleeding was observed with equal frequency in those with dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF), and petechiae, thrombocytopenia, and the tourniquet test differentiated poorly between the two diagnostic categories. Fifty-seven (18%) of 310 with shock did not fulfill all four criteria considered necessary for a diagnosis of DHF by the WHO, but use of the WHO provisional classification scheme resulted in considerable over-inflation of the DHF figures. If two separate entities truly exist rather than a continuous spectrum of disease, it is essential that some measure of capillary leak is included in any classification system, with less emphasis on bleeding and a specific platelet count.
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February 2004