Thursday, May 23, 2024

GILEAD SCIENCES JOIN FORCES WITH WORLD HEPATITIS ALLIANCE AND EXPERTS TO AWARD US$4 MILLION ALL4LIVER GRANT FOR VIRAL HEPATITIS ELIMINATION BY 2030, INCLUDING TWO COMMUNITY-LED INITIATIVES IN ASIA

– Gilead Awards US$4 Million Globally (Excluding the United States) Through the Gilead ALL4LIVER Grant –
– World Hepatitis Alliance Supports Global Expansion of Gilead ALL4LIVER Grant by Joining Grant Review Committee –
South Korea’s Association of Liver Patients and Survivors and the Taiwan region’s Taiwan Formosa Cancer Foundation Receive the Grant to Launch Innovative Projects Addressing Viral Hepatitis in The Region –

SINGAPORE, April 15, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Gilead Sciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: GILD), announced a global distribution of US$4 million through its ALL4LIVER Grant (“Grant”) to support community-backed innovative projects associated with hepatitis B (HBV), hepatitis C (HCV), and hepatitis D (HDV) in conjunction with the World Hepatitis Summit (“Summit”). An official announcement was made at a Gilead-hosted symposium titled “Partnering for Global Health Equity: Case Studies from Around the World,” held during the World Hepatitis Summit (“Summit”) in Lisbon from 9th to 11th April, 2024.

Out of 71 organizations awarded the 2023 Grant, 10 are from Asia including Association of Liver Patients and Survivors based in South Korea and Taiwan Formosa Cancer Foundation based in the Taiwan region, among others. These recipients are selected by an independent external review panel of global experts, including the World Hepatitis Alliance (“WHA”). This collaboration extends WHA’s longstanding partnership with Gilead to further the Grant’s ambition of supporting community-led efforts and catalyzing viral hepatitis elimination efforts.

The Western Pacific accounts for 40 per cent of all chronic viral hepatitis cases worldwide, with 108 million people living with HBV and 14.4 million HCV.[1],[2] It is estimated approximately 15–20% of the adults are carriers of HBV and 2–5% are infected with HCV in the Taiwan region.[3],[4] According to the Taiwan region‘s cancer registry, about 47% of liver cancers are caused by chronic HBV and 33% by chronic HCV respectively.[5] Approximately 60%–80% of all liver cancer and cirrhosis incidences in South Korea are reportedly due to chronic HBV, while 10%–20% are due to HCV. [6],[7] The data demonstrates that to achieve viral hepatitis elimination in the region, addressing the unmet needs associated with viral hepatitis is crucial. The grant funding will empower the two organizations to launch innovative projects aimed at driving testing, improving linkage to care, and elevating viral hepatitis on the public health agenda.

Association of Liver Patients and Survivors, a volunteer-led and run organization in South Korea, will utilize the funding to sustain the “Happiness Sharing” periodicals. The initiative aims to heighten public awareness, promote early detection, and instill a culture of proactive management for HBV, with inputs from patients and healthcare professionals. The other grantee, Taiwan Formosa Cancer Foundation, plans to leverage their established mechanisms for sharing and exchanging of information and implementing cooperative programs to become a trusted source of information and complement national health systems to benefit more patients. The campaign will leverage online and offline channels to provide easily understandable health information and share inspiring patient stories, uplift health literacy and reduce cancer incidence and mortality through public education.

Professor Tan Chee Kiat, Senior Consultant, Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Singapore General Hospital, and an advisor of All4LIVER Grant Review Committee said: “Hepatitis is often referred to as a silent killer, as individuals infected with it may show no symptoms for many years until complications like liver cirrhosis or liver cancer develop. This delayed onset of symptoms can result in missed chances for timely treatment and regular monitoring for liver cancer. Asia bears a significant burden of perinatally acquired chronic hepatitis, highlighting the crucial need for improved public education to dispel misconceptions, advocate for prevention, and promote early detection to ensure individuals receive timely and necessary treatment for this health issue.”

“With the World Health Organization’s 2030 goal to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat fast approaching, the need for a multi-stakeholder approach is more urgent than ever. Hepatitis remains a significant public health burden in the region and concerted effort from various sectors is essential. With the ALL4LIVER Grant, we’re proud to join forces with our community partners more closely, nurturing innovative solutions specifically tailored to local challenges. Together, we envision a future where the burden of hepatitis is a thing of the past, and healthcare is truly accessible to all,” said Stanley Li, General Manager, Singapore, Hong Kong & Malaysia.

Notably, this marks the second cycle of the Gilead ALL4LIVER Grant in Asia. Since 2021, the Grant has been supporting campaigns led by local community organizations in Asia, aimed at driving testing, sharing knowledge of viral hepatitis, and raising awareness of the disease. The 2023 Grant recipients span regions including Africa, South America, Asia, Oceania, Europe, and North America. The US$4 million funding will be committed to community-backed innovative projects that address unmet needs associated with HCV, HBV, and HDV by tackling stigma and discrimination, while simultaneously supporting efforts to achieve the elimination of viral hepatitis elimination as a public health concern. 

For more information about Gilead ALL4LIVER Grant and former grantees, please visit https://www.gileadall4liver.com/ 

About Gilead Sciences

Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company that has pursued and achieved breakthroughs in medicine for more than three decades, with the goal of creating a healthier world for all people. The company is committed to advancing innovative medicines to prevent and treat life-threatening diseases, including HIV, viral hepatitis, COVID-19, and cancer. Gilead operates in more than 35 countries worldwide, with headquarters in Foster City, California. 

About the ALL4LIVER Grant 

Gilead Sciences launched the ALL4LIVER Grant in 2021, a biennial grant designed to empower local communities and the fight against viral hepatitis. The ALL4LIVER Grant program aims to support projects initiated by local communities in Africa, South America, Asia and Oceania, Europe, and North America (excluding the United States) to work towards the WHO goal of eliminating viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030.

For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company’s website at www.gilead.com, follow Gilead on X (@GileadSciences) or call Gilead Public Affairs at 1-800-GILEAD-5 or 1-650-574-30. 

[1] World Health Organization. (n.d.). Hepatitis. https://www.who.int/westernpacific/health-topics/hepatitis

[2] CDA Foundation’s Polaris Observatory. (2021). Data. Retrieved September 1, 2021 [Updated on 1 September 2021]

[3] Yang, J. F., et al. (2010). Viral hepatitis infections in southern Taiwan: A multicenter community-based study. Kaohsiung Journal of Medical Sciences, 26, 461–469. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1607-551X(10)70073-5

[4] Yu, M. L., et al. (2015). Huge gap between clinical efficacy and community effectiveness in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C: A nationwide survey in Taiwan. Medicine 94 (e690). https://doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000000690

[5] Su, T. H., Wu, C. H., Liu, T. H., Ho, C. M., & Liu, C. J. (2023). Clinical practice guidelines and real-life practice in hepatocellular carcinoma: A Taiwan perspective. Clinical and Molecular Hepatology, 29(2), 230-241. https://doi.org/10.3350/cmh.2022.0421

[6] Nam, J. Y., Jang, E. S., Kim, Y. S., Lee, Y. J., Kim, I. H., Cho, S. B., et al. (2020). Epidemiological and clinical characteristics of hepatitis C virus infection in South Korea from 2007 to 2017: A prospective multicenter cohort study. Gut and Liver, 14:207–217.

[7] Kim, B. H., & Park, J. W. (2018). Epidemiology of liver cancer in South Korea. Clinical and Molecular Hepatology, 24(1), 1–9.

Source: Gilead Sciences, Inc.

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