New Class of AIDS Drugs on the Horizon
WebMD News Archive
Robinson tells WebMD that the new paper confirms that integrase is an
exciting target for AIDS therapies because it offers a new type of drug to use
in combination with existing drugs. Indeed, studies in his laboratory show that
the effect with the other two types of AIDS drugs has "at least
additive" anti-HIV effect.
"Integrase is a viable target for drug therapy, and we are likely to see
integrase inhibitors in clinical trials in the next few years," Robinson
Hirsch acknowledges that the current crop of integrase inhibitors is useful
only as a guide to the creation of new compound suitable for human consumption.
"We are a long way from a drug or a drug candidate," he says.
"These compounds are not going into animal testing; they lack the necessary
characteristics of a drug candidate. We are searching for a better lead
Nevertheless, the work is bound to catch the attention of the drug industry.
"I'm sure that this will stimulate other pharmaceutical companies to search
for new compounds," Chow says. "I think that this will renew interest
in targeting integrase."
- Scientists have identified the second member of a group of compounds called
integrase inhibitors, which could one day be used to treat HIV.
- Integrase inhibitors work by preventing HIV from snipping open human DNA
and inserting its own genetic code.
- In laboratory studies, this class of compounds even works against viruses
that are resistant to other drugs, although clinical application is still a
long way off.