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HIV Health and Treatment Issues >> Treatment & Side Effects

Anonymous
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new drugs overview (by a rookie), and comments
      07/24/05 09:02 PM

Many of you are much sharper about emerging hiv medications than I am...

Is this is good overview of some of the good emerging options??

I see two exciting classes of drugs. By this I mean they seem to show good efficacy in diminishing the viral load and they have limited side effects. The problem with defeating HIV over the years, has been its ability to mutate very quickly. Thus a med that is effective at one stage, loses effectiveness later. However that are essential elements of the HIV lifecycle that aren't able to mutate. So if you block those essential elements, you block the virus. One is the way that if gets into CD4. This is the CCR5 door-way. If you block the door, the dog doesn't get into the house to destroy the furniture.

Class 1. Theurapeutic Vaccines.

These are the theraupeutic vaccines. The exciting ones seem to be targeting the TAT protein that works in association with the virus itself. I think of the TAT protein as the "Artillery Prep" (to use a military analogy) that goes into CD4 initially to weaken it, in preparation for virus entry. It also has a secondary coordination role outside of the CD4 cell. Thus, by blocking TAT, you block the ability of the virus to function in two different ways.

Some of the best work is coming from Sweden with the BI-201 from BioInvent, Sweden. After initial encouraging results, clinical trials are kicking off in London.

Another good team is working under Dr. Barbara Ensoli at Intituto Superiore di Sanita, Italy. This is also an Anti-TAT Antibody approach. You block TAT and you block the ability to HIV to function.

Class 2. CCR5 Inbibitors.

These drugs go after the location on CCR5 where the virus enters the CD4. Think of this as blocking the doggie door, so the dog doesn't get in to destroy the furniture. Historically, we have allowed the virus to get in to CD4 and then tried to keep it from being effective inside the cell. I think of this as putting dog repellent on the couch. Eventually he learns to ignore the dog repellent and tear up the couch.

Here I like AK602, from a Japanese University, recently reporting excellent results on 40 patients, with minimal side effects.

I also like SCH-D from Schering-Plough. Same principle of operation.

Summary. Historically, we have been crude in trying to defeat the virus. This is equivalent to dropping a 500 pound bomb on your neighborhood to catch a car thief in front of one house. This couses collateral damage (side effects). As we get better knowledge about the virus and how it operates, we can use a sniper to pick it out or better yet, just tie his shoe laces and let him trip harmlessly to the ground. Thus the surrounding houses aren't destroyed (no side effects).

I'm not an expert by any means. Please correct any errors you see in the words above. Comments welcome.

In the military / aerospace industry, we find the congressmen and senators that control funding for key agencies and programs. We need to do the same here. Which committees control FDA, CDC and NIH funding?? Which congressmen and senators run these committees?? Don't get mad and blame the "system". Use the system and make it dance to your tune.

Lets get the promising drugs listed above into large scale, voluntary trials in an Ultra Fast Track way. After initial promising results in laborary, animals and limited human trials, I sure there will be lots of human volunteers available. Also, consider finding volunteers in prison populations (highly controlled, chance to serve society, chance for better health). Also, consider setting up a volunteer pool in Africa (Nigeria?) or Asia (Thailand?) to support large scale rapid testing of new drugs.

I want to say something very blunt also. Please don't be offended. Many people in power have been reluctant to support HIV funding because they see it as the Gay disease. Het men to not want to be seen as desperate to help gay men, because their friends and buddies may start to think of them as gay or "lovers of gays". Thus, it is critical, critical to market HIV infection as a disease of women (fastest growning group) and children. We need to emphasize that this is the disease of beautiful, young American ladies, the same ladies that many of these powerful het men would love to spend the night with. HIV infection in American has to have the face of a beautiful woman.

Jeff the Science_Dude

BS, MS Physics, ex-military


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