Journal of AIDS & Clinical Research

ISSN: 2155-6113

Open Access

HIV-1 Capsid as a Target for Antiviral Therapy


Zhiqing Zhang, Feng Zhang, Chao Yang, Jialong Qi, Shuangquan Gao, Shaowei Li, Ying Gu and Ningshao Xia

Highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART) is the mainstay anti-HIV-1 therapy as it prolongs survival and switches HIV-1 infection from a fatal disease to a chronic yet manageable one. Unfortunately, drug toxicity and the emergence of drug-resistant mutant strains in patients undergoing long-term therapy have meant that there is still a continual need for novel drugs that target alternative molecules in the HIV-1 life cycle. The HIV-1 Gag precursor protein is a multidomain polyprotein that is proteolytically cleaved into the main, mature capsid protein; CA. CA has multifaceted roles during HIV-1 morphogenesis and is thus regarded as a promising target for future antiviral intervention. In this review, we describe the advances made in our understanding of the HIV-1 capsid structure and the key interactions involved during core assembly, and discuss how this and future knowledge will provide important structural insight for antiviral design.


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