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Antiretroviral drug

AIDS patients are often prescribed a combination of drugs that attack HIV at differing stages in its life cycle. These are known as antiretroviral drugs. They are given in various combinations to prevent the development of viral resistance. They include:

  • Reverse transcriptase inhibitors (RTIs) inhibit activity of reverse transcriptase, an enzyme HIV needs to reproduce. Lack of this enzyme prevents HIV from building RNA and DNA. They come in three forms:
    • Nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs)
    • Nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NARTIs) or (NRTIs)
    • Nucleotide analog reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NtARTIs) or (NtRTIs)
      • tenofovir[?]: also called Viread, Tenofovir DF, tenofovir disoproxil fumarate
  • Protease inhibitors (PIs), which inhibit activity of protease, an enzyme used directly by HIV, and so prevent virus replication.
  • Fusion inhibitors inhibit fusion of HIV with the cell membrane, preventing infection of uninfected cells
      • enfuvirtide: also called Fuzeon, T-20. available only in injectable form.
  • Fixed Combinations:
      • Trizizir = ABC + AZT + 3TC
      • Combivir = AZT + 3TC

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