Related Articles Prevention and management of hepatitis B virus reactivation in patients with hematological malignancies treated with anticancer therapy. World J Gastroenterol. 2016 Jul 28;22(28):6484-500 Authors: Law MF, Ho R, Cheung CK, Tam LH, Ma K, So KC, Ip B, So J, Lai J, Ng J, Tam TH Abstract Hepatitis due to hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation can be severe and potentially fatal, but is preventable. HBV reactivation is most commonly reported in patients receiving cancer chemotherapy, especially rituximab-containing therapy for hematological malignancies and those receiving stem cell transplantation. All patients with hematological malignancies receiving anticancer therapy should be screened for active or resolved HBV infection by blood tests for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc). Patients found to be positive for HBsAg should be given prophylactic antiviral therapy to prevent HBV reactivation. For patients with resolved HBV infection, no standard strategy has yet been established to prevent HBV reactivation. There are usually two options. One is pre-emptive therapy guided by serial HBV DNA monitoring, whereby antiviral therapy is given as soon as HBV DNA becomes detectable. However, there is little evidence regarding the optimal interval and period of monitoring. An alternative approach is prophylactic antiviral therapy, especially for patients receiving high-risk therapy such as rituximab, newer generation of anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody, obinutuzumab or hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. This strategy may effectively prevent HBV reactivation and avoid the inconvenience of repeated HBV DNA monitoring. Entecavir or tenofovir are preferred over lamivudine as prophylactic therapy. Although there is no well-defined guideline on the optimal duration of prophylactic therapy, there is growing evidence to recommend continuing prophylactic antiviral therapy for at least 12 mo after cessation of chemotherapy, and even longer for those who receive rituximab or who had high serum HBV DNA levels before the start of immunosuppressive therapy. Many novel agents have recently become available for the treatment of hematological malignancies, and these agents may be associated with HBV reactivation. Although there is currently limited evidence to guide the optimal preventive measures, we recommend antiviral prophylaxis in HBsAg-positive patients receiving novel treatments, especially the Bruton tyrosine kinase inhibitors and the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase inhibitors, which are B-cell receptor signaling modulators and reduce proliferation of malignant B-cells. Further studies are needed to clarify the risk of HBV reactivation with these agents and the best prophylactic strategy in the era of targeted therapy for hematological malignancies. PMID: 27605883 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

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Prevention and management of hepatitis B virus reactivation in patients with hematological malignancies treated with anticancer therapy.