Our activities

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FP7
HIVINNOV (Grant n°305137) is a collaborative research project supported by the European Union


Expected outcomes

HIVinnov is developing innovative antiretrovirals from new classes of HIV drugs. Our activities will impact the treatment options and advance the scientific knowledge of the HIV virology.

 

Impact on antiviral treatments

 

With the introduction of HAART, HIV infection has become a chronic disease and HIV treatment has to be taken life-long. However due to the growing concern of drug resistance new drugs are needed.

 

The development of new classes of drugs with novel mechanism of action targeting host-virus interactions is a very valuable option to overcome virus resistance. The outcomes of HIVINNOV, with the discovery and development of two new classes of drugs, will complement the range of therapeutic options to confront the growing incidence of drug resistance and will provide novel targets for longer-term development of new therapies.

 

The development of new drugs, by improving current treatments, may also contribute to prevention of HIV transmission. Emerging evidence supports the concept of "treatment as prevention" of sexual transmission of HIV. Lower plasma HIV RNA levels are associated with decreases in the concentration of the virus in genital secretions.

 

Scientific impact of HIVinnov

 

Protein- Protein interactions as druggable targets

 

To our knowledge no drugs derived from protein-protein interaction (PPI) inhibitors are presently in clinical use. Understanding the druggability of protein-protein interaction interfaces has become today a major goal in chemical biology, with substantial practical implications for the discovery of new drugs. PPIs are involved at multiple points in virtually all biological pathways, including disease pathways with several steps of putative therapeutic intervention. Identifying druggable sites at PPIs remains largely an unsolved problem.

 

Targeting the interfaces between proteins has a huge therapeutic potential, but discovering small-molecule drugs that disrupt PPIs is a great challenge. The IN-LEDGF target and the strategy we propose are highly innovative, and are expected to have a strong impact on drug discovery in the future.

 

Advance knowledge in HIV molecular virology

 

With the exception of reverse transcription, the steps of the HIV-1 life cycle from uncoating to the events just prior to integration are still poorly understood, yet they may provide important new targets for therapeutic intervention.