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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2010 Sep;65(9):1839-41. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkq261. Epub 2010 Jul 17.

Ibalizumab: an anti-CD4 monoclonal antibody for the treatment of HIV-1 infection.

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Division of Infectious Diseases and HIV Medicine, Department of Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA.


The majority of currently available agents for the treatment of HIV-1 infection act by targeting one of several intracellular steps in the viral life cycle. Despite improvements in efficacy and tolerability, the development of viral resistance to these agents is common and significant toxicity and adherence issues still occur. For this reason the development of safe, well tolerated antiviral agents that target a novel step in the viral life cycle remains important. Viral entry into host cells affords several potential extracellular targets for antiretroviral therapy. Ibalizumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody to CD4, the primary host cellular receptor for HIV-1 entry, has been shown to block HIV-1 entry in vitro. Early clinical trials have demonstrated significant antiviral efficacy with a >1 log(10) reduction in viral load when given as monotherapy. Its long half-life, which allows weekly dosing, and its administration as an intravenous infusion differentiate it from other currently available antiretroviral agents. These properties may prove useful in allowing improved drug delivery to patients who have had difficulty adhering to daily oral regimens. Its unique mode of action reduces the risk of cross-resistance with currently available antiretroviral agents, with the potential to expand the choices available to treat drug-resistant HIV-1.

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