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Structural mechanisms of HIV drug resistance.

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Structural Biochemistry Program, Frederick Biomedical Supercomputing Center, SAIC-Frederick, NCI-Frederick Cancer Research and Development Center, Maryland 21702, USA.


Antiviral therapy for AIDS has focused on the discovery and design of inhibitors for two main enzyme targets of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV)--reverse transcriptase (RT) and protease (PR). Despite several classes of promising new anti-HIV agents, the clinical emergence of drug-resistant variants of HIV has severely limited the long-term effectiveness of these drugs. Genetic analysis of resistant virus has identified a number of critical mutations in the RT and PR genes. Structural analysis of inhibitor-enzyme complexes and mutational modeling studies are leading to a better understanding of how these drug-resistance mutations exert their effects at a structural level. These insights have implications of the design of new drugs and therapeutic strategies to combat drug resistance to AIDS.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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