Entry Inhibitors: Hope On The Horizon?
Entry. It's what must happen for HIV to infect cells. Blocking HIV entry means the virus does not get inside the T cell. The only approved medication that does this is Fuzeon, which must be injected into the skin twice daily. Even so, other HIV medications must be taken at the same time or else HIV becomes resistant to Fuzeon very quickly. So, what if there were other entry inhibitors? What if they could be combined together to block HIV entry and not allow resistance to develop as quickly? This may be possible in a few years if several new drugs now being studied turn out to be safe and effective. The entry inhibitor "pipeline" for treating HIV has just become more promising.
Although the drug candidates listed still have at least 3 to 5 years of more study ahead, some may eventually become new options for people with HIV/AIDS. These agents work in different ways: some bind to parts of HIV, while others bind to parts of the T cell that HIV needs for entering the cell. Plus, some people think these drugs may have fewer overall side effects because they work outside of the T cells, unlike current medications that work inside of the cells. But, it's way too early to say that for sure. Keep your fingers crossed and read upcoming issues of HIV Treatment ALERTS! for further updates!
This article was provided by The Center for AIDS Information & Advocacy. It is a part of the publication HIV Treatment ALERTS!. Visit CFA's website to find out more about their activities and publications.