New drugs targeting HIV

HIV/AIDS is a devastating disease that is estimated to affect 33 million people worldwide. Numerous drugs now target different stages of the viral life-cycle and, in developed countries, anti-retroviral therapy (ARV) has dramatically reduced AIDS-related mortality. However, the success of ARV is compromised by the continual emergence of drug resistant HIV-1 strains which challenge clinical management of the disease. Accordingly, there is a significant need for anti-HIV drugs that have new mechanisms of action and can function against the existing drug-resistant strains of HIV. Using a fragment-based drug design approach, we have identified a number of low-molecular weight compounds which inhibit the HIV enzyme Reverse Transcriptase (RT) [1]. In vitro activity assays show that the inhibitory mechanisms of these compounds are distinct from clinically used HIV drugs. This work aims to elaborate the initial hit compounds to produce new potent anti-HIV compounds with novel mechanisms of action.

New drugs targeting HIV

Enhanced research experiences

This project is a collaboration between researchers within Medicinal Chemistry at Monash Institute Pharmaceutical Science and the Burnet Institute. This project provides the opportunity to gain interdisciplinary experience in Medicinal Chemistry and Virology.