UC781, a thiocarboxanilide nonnucleoside inhibitor of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) reverse transcriptase (RT), inhibited RT DNA polymerase activity in vitro with marked potency. Significant inhibition was noted at a 1:1 molar ratio of UC871 to RT, characteristic of a tight-binding inhibitor. Infectivity of the HIV-1(IIIB) laboratory strain was eliminated in a concentration-dependent manner following short exposure of isolated virion particles to UC781. Neither nevirapine nor certain other carboxanilide nonnucleoside inhibitors were effective in this manner. Endogenous reverse transcription in UC781-treated virus particles was markedly reduced. Treatment of chronically HIV-1-infected H9 cells with UC781 did not alter virus production, but the infectivity of the virus produced by the cells during drug exposure was markedly reduced. Moreover, the infectivity of nascent virus produced by the UC781-treated H9 cells after removal of exogenous drug was dramatically attenuated. Similarly, pretreatment of peripheral blood lymphocytes isolated from HIV-infected patients abolished the infectivity of virus produced by these cells after removal of exogenous drug, as measured by coculture experiments with uninfected cord blood mononuclear cells, indicating the utility of UC781 against a variety of clinical HIV samples. Importantly, preincubation of uninfected MT2 cells with UC781 rendered these cells refractory to subsequent HIV infection in the absence of extracellular drug, an effect that persisted for several days following removal of exogenous drug. These unique properties of UC781 indicate that this nonnucleoside inhibitor may have considerable promise for use in retrovirucidal formulations to minimize the spread of HIV from infected to noninfected individuals.
It was previously found that certain nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) possess virucidal activity against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), and it was suggested that the tight-binding mode of inhibition of reverse transcriptase might be important for this virucidal activity (Borkow et al., J. Virol. 71:3023-3030, 1997). To test this, we compared six different NNRTI, including three tight-binding NNRTI, namely UC781, efavirenz (EFV) (Sustiva), and 5-chloro-3-phenylsulfonylindole-2-carboxamide (CSIC), and three rapid-equilibrium NNRTI, delavirdine (DLV) (Rescriptor), nevirapine (NVP) (Viramune), and UC84, in a variety of virucidal tests. Incubation of isolated HIV-1 virions with UC781, EFV, or CSIC rapidly inactivated the virus, whereas DLV, NVP, and UC84 were ineffective in this respect. Exposure of H9+ cells chronically infected by HIV-1 to the tight-binding NNRTI abolished the infectivity of nascent virus subsequently produced by these cells following removal of extracellular drug, thereby preventing cell-to-cell virus transmission in the absence of exogenous drug. In contrast, cell-to-cell transmission of HIV was blocked by DLV, NVP, and UC84 only when the drug remained in the extracellular medium. Pretreatment of uninfected lymphocytoid cells with UC781, EFV, or CSIC, but not DLV, NVP, or UC84, protected these cells from subsequent HIV-1 infection in the absence of extracellular drug. The protective effect was dependent on both the dose of NNRTI and the viral load. The overall virucidal efficacy of the tight-binding NNRTI tested was CSIC > UC781 ≃ EFV. We conclude that the tight-binding mode of inhibition is an essential characteristic for virucidal NNRTI and that antiviral potency is an insufficient predictor for virucidal utility of NNRTI.
Suboptimal treatment of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection with nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) often results in the rapid selection of drug-resistant virus. Several amino acid substitutions at position 190 of reverse transcriptase (RT) have been associated with reduced susceptibility to the NNRTI, especially nevirapine (NVP) and efavirenz (EFV). In the present study, the effects of various 190 substitutions observed in viruses obtained from NNRTI-experienced patients were characterized with patient-derived HIV isolates and confirmed with a panel of isogenic viruses. Compared to wild-type HIV, which has a glycine at position 190 (G190), viruses with 190 substitutions (A, C, Q, S, V, E, or T, collectively referred to as G190X substitutions) were markedly less susceptible to NVP and EFV. In contrast, delavirdine (DLV) susceptibility of these G190X viruses increased from 3 to 300-fold (hypersusceptible) or was only slightly decreased. The replication capacity of viruses with certain 190 substitutions (C, Q, V, T, and E) was severely impaired and was correlated with reduced virion-associated RT activity and incomplete protease (PR) processing of the viral p55gag polyprotein. These defects were the result of inadequate p160gagpol incorporation into virions. Compensatory mutations within RT and PR improved replication capacity, p55gag processing, and RT activity, presumably through increased incorporation of p160gagpol into virions. We observe an inverse relationship between the degree of NVP and EFV resistance and the impairment of viral replication in viruses with substitutions at 190 in RT. These observations may have important implications for the future design and development of antiretroviral drugs that restrict the outgrowth of resistant variants with high replication capacity.
GW678248, a novel nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor, has been evaluated for anti-human immunodeficiency virus activity in a variety of in vitro assays against laboratory strains and clinical isolates. When GW678248 was tested in combination with approved drugs in the nucleoside and nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor classes or the protease inhibitor class, the antiviral activities were either synergistic or additive. When GW678248 was tested in combination with approved drugs in the nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor class, the antiviral activities were either additive or slightly antagonistic. Clinical isolates from antiretroviral drug-experienced patients were selected for evaluation of sensitivity to GW678248 in a recombinant virus assay. Efavirenz (EFV) and nevirapine (NVP) had ≥10-fold increases in their 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC50s) for 85% and 98% of the 55 selected isolates, respectively, whereas GW678248 had a ≥10-fold increase in the IC50 for only 17% of these isolates. Thus, 81 to 83% of the EFV- and/or NVP-resistant viruses from this data set were susceptible to GW678248. Virus populations resistant to GW678248 were selected by in vitro dose-escalating serial passage. Resistant progeny viruses recovered after eight passages had amino acid substitutions V106I, E138K, and P236L in the reverse transcriptase-coding region in one passage series and amino acid substitutions K102E, V106A, and P236L in a second passage series.
Pediatric patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are now living longer, healthier lives due to the advent of combined antiretroviral (ARV) therapy, including regimens that often contain non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). However, first-generation NNRTIs such as nevirapine (NVP) and efavirenz (EFV) have a low genetic barrier to resistance, and both drugs can become ineffective with a single viral point mutation. New agents with activity against resistant viral strains must be available to salvage children and adolescents with virologic failure after NNRTI use. One such drug, etravirine, an oral second-generation NNRTI approved for use in the US in heavily treatment-experienced HIV-1-infected adults in 2008, is accumulating data in this younger population. Etravirine became approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in early 2012 to be used in combination with other ARV medications in HIV-1-infected children aged 6 years to <18 years who are failing their regimens with HIV-1 strains resistant to NNRTIs and other ARVs. This approval was largely based on data from a prospective, open-label, phase II clinical trial in this age group prescribed etravirine at 5.2 mg/kg twice daily (up to the adult dose of 200 mg twice daily) in combination with an investigator-selected optimized background regimen. Currently available 48-week follow-up data show complete viral suppression (<50 copies/mL) in 56% of the patients, with relatively few serious adverse events attributed to the drug. Additional studies and case reports from the field suggest its utility in clinical practice. This review is designed to increase the background understanding of this drug in pediatric HIV providers, to lay out the current pediatric data to support its use, and to define its practical role in the treatment of HIV-infected children now and in the future.
salvage; resistance; children; adolescents; NNRTI; perinatal
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type-1 non-nucleoside and nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) are key drugs of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in the clinical management of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)/HIV infection.
First-generation NNRTIs, nevirapine (NVP), delavirdine (DLV) and efavirenz (EFV) are drugs with a low genetic barrier and poor resistance profile, which has led to the development of new generations of NNRTIs. Second-generation NNRTIs, etravirine (ETR) and rilpivirine (RPV) have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration and European Union, and the next generation of drugs is currently being clinically developed. This review describes recent clinical data, pharmacokinetics, metabolism, pharmacodynamics, safety and tolerability of commercialized NNRTIs, including the effects of sex, race and age differences on pharmacokinetics and safety. Moreover, it summarizes the characteristics of next-generation NNRTIs: lersivirine, GSK 2248761, RDEA806, BILR 355 BS, calanolide A, MK-4965, MK-1439 and MK-6186.
This review presents a wide description of NNRTIs, providing useful information for researchers interested in this field, both in clinical use and in research.
human immunodeficiency virus; non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors; nevirapine; delavirdine; efavirenz; etravirine; rilpivirine; next-generation non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors
The M230L mutation in HIV-1 reverse transcriptase (RT) is associated with resistance to first-generation nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). The present study was designed to determine the effects of M230L on enzyme function, viral replication capacity (RC), and the extent to which M230L might confer resistance to the second-generation NNRTI etravirine (ETR) as well as to the first-generation NNRTIs efavirenz (EFV) and nevirapine (NVP). Phenotyping assays with TZM-bl cells confirmed that M230L conferred various degrees of resistance to each of the NNRTIs tested. Recombinant viruses containing M230L displayed an 8-fold decrease in RC compared to that of the parental wild-type (WT) virus. Recombinant HIV-1 WT and M230L mutant RT enzymes were purified; and both biochemical and cell-based phenotypic assays confirmed that M230L conferred resistance to each of EFV, NVP, and ETR. RT that contained M230L was also deficient in regard to each of minus-strand DNA synthesis, both DNA- and RNA-dependent polymerase activities, processivity, and RNase H activity, suggesting that this mutation contributes to diminished viral replication kinetics.
The nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) UC781 is under development as a microbicide to prevent sexual transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1). However, NNRTI-resistant HIV-1 is increasingly prevalent in the infected population, and one of the concerns for NNRTI-based microbicides is that they will be ineffective against drug-resistant virus and may in fact selectively transmit NNRTI-resistant virus. We evaluated the microbicidal activity of UC781 against UC781-resistant (UCR), efavirenz-resistant (EFVR), and nevirapine-resistant (NVPR) strains in a variety of microbicide-relevant tests, including inactivation of cell-free virus, inhibition of cell-to-cell HIV-1 transmission, and the ability of UC781 pretreatment to protect cells from subsequent infection in the absence of exogenous drug. UC781 was 10- to 100-fold less effective against NNRTI-resistant HIV-1 compared to wild-type (wt) virus in each of these tests, with UC781 microbicidal activity against the various virus strains being wt ≥ NVPR > UCR ≥ EFVR. Breakthrough experiments using UC781-pretreated cells and mixtures of wt and NNRTI-resistant HIV-1 showed that UC781-pretreatment selected for NNRTI-resistant HIV-1. However, the efficacy of UC781 was dose dependent, and 25 μM UC781 provided essentially equivalent microbicidal activity against NNRTI-resistant and wt virus. The amount of UC781 in topical microbicide formulations under current development is approximately 100-fold greater than this concentration, so transmission of NNRTI-resistant virus may not be an issue at these microbicide formulation levels of UC781. Nonetheless, the reduced microbicidal activity of UC781 against NNRTI-resistant HIV-1 suggests that additional antiviral agents should be included in NNRTI-based microbicide formulations.
In the current study, we extended our previous works on natural endogenous reverse transcription (NERT) and further examined its potential as a virucide molecular target in sexual transmission of primate lentiviruses. HIV-1 and SIV virions were pretreated with select nucleoside (NRTIs) and nonnucleoside RT inhibitors (NNRTIs), either alone or in combination with NERT-stimulating substances. The effects of these antiretrovirals on virion inactivation were analyzed in human T cell lines and primary cell cultures. Pretreatment of HIV-1 virions with physiologic NERT-stimulants and 3′-azido-3′-deoxythymidine 5′-triphosphate (AZT-TP) or nevirapine potently inactivated cell-free HIV-1 virions and resulted in strong inhibition of the viral infectivity. Pretreatment of chimeric SHIV-RT virions with NERT-stimulating cocktail and select antiretrovirals also resulted in virion inactivation and inhibition of viral infectivity in T cell lines. Our findings demonstrate the potential clinical utility of approaches based on inhibiting NERT in sexual transmission of HIV-1, through the development of effective anti-HIV-1 microbicides, such as NRTIs and NNRTIs.
HIV-1; SIV; NERT; NRTI; NNRTI; RT; Virucide
Nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) are potent and commonly prescribed antiviral agents used in combination therapy (CART) of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection. The development of drug resistance is a major limitation of CART. Reverse transcriptase (RT) genotypes with the NNRTI resistance mutations K101E+G190S are highly resistant to efavirenz (EFV) and can develop during failure of EFV-containing regimens in patients. We have previously shown that virus with K101E+G190S mutations can replicate more efficiently in the presence of EFV than in its absence. In this study, we evaluated the underlying mechanism for drug-dependent stimulation, using a single-cycle cell culture assay in which EFV was added either during the infection or the virus production step. We determined that EFV stimulates K101E+G190S virus during early infection and does not affect late steps of virus replication, such as increasing the amount of active RT incorporated into virions. Additionally, we showed that another NNRTI, nevirapine (NVP), stimulated K101E+G190S virus replication during the early steps of infection similar to EFV, but that the newest NNRTI, etravirine (ETR), did not. We also showed that EFV stimulates K101E+Y188L and K101E+V106I virus, but not K101E+L100I, K101E+K103N, K101E+Y181C, or K101E+G190A virus, suggesting that the stimulation is mutation specific. Real-time PCR of reverse transcription intermediates showed that although the drug did not stimulate minus-strand transfer, it did stimulate minus-strand strong-stop DNA synthesis. Our results indicate that stimulation most likely occurs through a mechanism whereby NNRTIs stimulate priming or elongation of the tRNA.
Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) Nef protein exerts several effects, both on infected cells and as a virion protein, which work together to enhance viral replication. One of these activities is the ability to enhance infectivity and the formation of proviral DNA. The mechanism of this enhancement remains incompletely understood. We show that virions with nef deleted can be restored to wild-type infectivity by stimulating intravirion reverse transcription. Particle composition and measures of reverse transcriptase activity remain the same for Nef+ and Nef− virions both before and after natural endogenous reverse transcription (NERT) treatment. The effect of NERT treatment on virions pseudotyped with murine leukemia virus envelope protein was similar to that on particles pseudotyped with HIV-1 envelope protein. However, virions pseudotyped with vesicular stomatitis virus G envelope protein showed no influence of Nef on NERT enhancement of infectivity. These observations suggest that Nef may function at a level prior to reverse transcription. Since NERT treatment results in partial disassembly of the viral core, we speculate that Nef may function at the level of core particle disassembly.
Conventional highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) regimens used to treat human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection typically use nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs) and either a protease inhibitor (PI) or a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI). Because PI-based regimens are associated with significant long-term toxicity and adherence difficulty, there is a need for novel regimens that maximize combination treatment options. This 12-month, observational, cohort study evaluated the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of a novel three-drug HAART regimen. Drug treatment consisted of nevirapine (NVP), efavirenz (EFV), and didanosine (ddl). Twenty-six treatment-naive and -experienced HIV-1+ men and women were included in the study. Assessment consisted of CD4+ cell count, plasma HIV-1 RNA load, and adverse effects of study medications. After one year of therapy, 11/12 treatment-naive subjects (92%) and 8/9 treatment-experienced subjects (89%) had viral loads < 400 copies/mL. Both groups also had an excellent immune response. At one year, there was a mean increase of 438 CD4+ cells/mm3 among treatment-naive subjects and 367 cells/mm3 among treatment-experienced subjects. Treatment-limiting adverse effects occurred in 3/15 treatment-naive (20%) and 2/11 treatment-experienced (18%) subjects. These preliminary data suggest that the combination of NVP, EFV, and ddl is simple, safe, and effective.
Patients infected with HIV-1 initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART) containing a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) show presumably fewer atherogenic lipid changes than those initiating most ARTs containing a protease inhibitor. We analysed whether lipid changes differed between the two most commonly used NNRTIs, nevirapine (NVP) and efavirenz (EFV).
Methods and Findings
Prospective analysis of lipids and lipoproteins was performed in patients enrolled in the NVP and EFV treatment groups of the 2NN study who remained on allocated treatment during 48 wk of follow-up. Patients were allocated to NVP (n = 417), or EFV (n = 289) in combination with stavudine and lamivudine. The primary endpoint was percentage change over 48 wk in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-c), total cholesterol (TC), TC:HDL-c ratio, non-HDL-c, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides. The increase of HDL-c was significantly larger for patients receiving NVP (42.5%) than for patients receiving EFV (33.7%; p = 0.036), while the increase in TC was lower (26.9% and 31.1%, respectively; p = 0.073), resulting in a decrease of the TC:HDL-c ratio for patients receiving NVP (−4.1%) and an increase for patients receiving EFV (+5.9%; p < 0.001). The increase of non-HDL-c was smaller for patients receiving NVP (24.7%) than for patients receiving EFV (33.6%; p = 0.007), as were the increases of triglycerides (20.1% and 49.0%, respectively; p < 0.001) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (35.0% and 40.0%, respectively; p = 0.378). These differences remained, or even increased, after adjusting for changes in HIV-1 RNA and CD4+ cell levels, indicating an effect of the drugs on lipids over and above that which may be explained by suppression of HIV-1 infection. The increases in HDL-c were of the same order of magnitude as those seen with the use of the investigational HDL-c-increasing drugs.
NVP-containing ART shows larger increases in HDL-c and decreases in TC:HDL-c ratio than an EFV-containing regimen. Based on these findings, protease-inhibitor-sparing regimens based on non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor, particularly those containing NVP, may be expected to result in a reduced risk of coronary heart disease.
Comparison of two commonly prescribed non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors shows that patients on nevirapine have better blood lipid profiles
We assessed the relationship between atazanavir (ATV)-based antiretroviral treatment (ART) and plasma hepatitis C virus (HCV) viral load in a population of HIV/HCV-coinfected patients. HIV/HCV-coinfected patients who received ART based on a protease inhibitor (PI) or nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) were included. Patients were stratified by ART drug [ATV/rtv, lopinavir (LPV/rtv), efavirenz (EFV), nevirapine (NVP), and other PIs], HCV genotype (1/4 and 2/3), and IL28B genotype (CC and non-CC). The Kruskal–Wallis test and chi-squared test were used to compare continuous and categorical variables, respectively. Multivariate analysis consisted of a stepwise linear regression analysis. Six hundred and forty-nine HIV/HCV-coinfected patients were included. HCV genotype 1/4 patients who received ATV had higher HCV RNA levels [6.57 (5.9–6.8) log IU/ml] than those who received LPV [6.1 (5.5–6.5) log IU/ml], EFV [6.1 (5.6–6.4) log IU/ml], NVP [5.8 (5.5–5.9) log IU/ml], or other PIs [6.1 (5.7–6.4) log IU/ml] (p=0.014). This association held for the IL28B genotype (CC versus non-CC). The association was not found in patients carrying HCV genotypes 2/3. The linear regression model identified the IL28B genotype and ATV use as independent factors associated with HCV RNA levels. ATV-based therapy may be associated with a higher HCV RNA viral load in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients.
Early HIV-1 reverse transcription can be separated into initiation and elongation phases. Here we show, using PCR analysis of negative-strand strong-stop DNA [(−)ssDNA] synthesis in intact virus, that different reverse transcriptase (RT) inhibitors affect distinct phases of early natural endogenous reverse transcription (NERT). The effects of nevirapine on NERT were consistent with a mechanism of action including both specific and nonspecific binding events. The nonspecific component of this inhibition targeted the elongation reaction, whereas the specific effect seemed principally to be directed at very early events (initiation or the initiation-elongation switch). In contrast, foscarnet and the nucleoside analog ddATP inhibited both early and late (−)ssDNA synthesis in a similar manner. We also examined compounds that targeted other viral proteins and found that Ro24-7429 (a Tat antagonist) and rosmarinic acid (an integrase inhibitor) also directly inhibited RT. Our results indicate that NERT can be used to identify and evaluate compounds that directly target the reverse transcription complex.
There is conflicting evidence and practice regarding the use of the non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) efavirenz (EFV) and nevirapine (NVP) in first-line antiretroviral therapy (ART).
We systematically reviewed virological outcomes in HIV-1 infected, treatment-naive patients on regimens containing EFV versus NVP from randomised trials and observational cohort studies. Data sources include PubMed, Embase, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials and conference proceedings of the International AIDS Society, Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections, between 1996 to May 2013. Relative risks (RR) and 95% confidence intervals were synthesized using random-effects meta-analysis. Heterogeneity was assessed using the I2 statistic, and subgroup analyses performed to assess the potential influence of study design, duration of follow up, location, and tuberculosis treatment. Sensitivity analyses explored the potential influence of different dosages of NVP and different viral load thresholds.
Of 5011 citations retrieved, 38 reports of studies comprising 114 391 patients were included for review. EFV was significantly less likely than NVP to lead to virologic failure in both trials (RR 0.85 [0.73–0.99] I2 = 0%) and observational studies (RR 0.65 [0.59–0.71] I2 = 54%). EFV was more likely to achieve virologic success than NVP, though marginally significant, in both randomised controlled trials (RR 1.04 [1.00–1.08] I2 = 0%) and observational studies (RR 1.06 [1.00–1.12] I2 = 68%).
EFV-based first line ART is significantly less likely to lead to virologic failure compared to NVP-based ART. This finding supports the use of EFV as the preferred NNRTI in first-line treatment regimen for HIV treatment, particularly in resource limited settings.
Analysis of the virologic and immunomodulatory effects of an association of efavirenz (EFV), nelfinavir (NFV), and stavudine (d4T) was performed in 18 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected and highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-experienced patients who failed multiple therapeutic protocols. Patients (<500 CD4+ cells/μl; >10,000 HIV copies/ml) were nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI)-naive and were treated for 10 months with EFV (600 mg/day) in association with NFV (750 mg three times daily) and d4T (30 or 40 mg twice daily). Measurement of HIV peptide- and mitogen-stimulated production of interleukin-2 (IL-2), gamma interferon (IFN-γ), IL-4, and IL-10 as well as quantitation of mRNA for the same cytokines in unstimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells were performed at baseline and 2 weeks (t1), 2 months (t2), and 10 months (t3) into therapy. The results showed that HIV-specific (but not mitogen-stimulated) IL-2 and IFN-γ production was augmented and IL-10 production was reduced in patients who received EFV, NFV, and d4T. Therapy was also associated with a reduction in HIV RNA in plasma and an increase in CD4+ cell count. These changes occurred in the first year of therapy (t2 and t3) and were confirmed by quantitation of cytokine-specific mRNA. Therapy with EFV, NFV, and d4T increases HIV-specific type 1 cytokine production as well as CD4 counts and reduces plasma viremia. This therapeutic regimen may be considered for use in cases of advanced HIV infection.
The M184V substitution in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) reverse transcriptase (RT), encoding high-level resistance to lamivudine (3TC), results in decreased HIV-1 replicative capacity, diminished RT processivity, and increased RT fidelity in biochemical assays. We assessed the effect of M184V on the development of resistance to the nonnucleoside RT inhibitors efavirenz (EFV) and nevirapine, and to the protease inhibitor amprenavir (APV) in tissue culture. Genotypic analysis revealed differences in EFV resistance-conferring mutations in subtype B (K103N) versus subtype C (V106 M), and the appearance of both was significantly delayed in the M184V-containing variants compared with the wild type (WT). Similarly, there was a marked delay in the emergence of mutations associated with APV resistance (I54 M/L/V) in subtype B viruses harboring M184V compared with paired WT viral isolates.
TMC125 is a potent new investigational nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) that is active against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) with resistance to currently licensed NNRTIs. Sequential passage experiments with both wild-type virus and NNRTI-resistant virus were performed to identify mutations selected by TMC125 in vitro. In addition to “classic” selection experiments at a low multiplicity of infection (MOI) with increasing concentrations of inhibitors, experiments at a high MOI with fixed concentrations of inhibitors were performed to ensure a standardized comparison between TMC125 and current NNRTIs. Both low- and high-MOI experiments demonstrated that the development of resistance to TMC125 required multiple mutations which frequently conferred cross-resistance to efavirenz and nevirapine. In high-MOI experiments, 1 μM TMC125 completely inhibited the breakthrough of resistant virus from wild-type and NNRTI-resistant HIV-1, in contrast to efavirenz and nevirapine. Furthermore, breakthrough of virus from site-directed mutant (SDM) SDM-K103N/Y181C occurred at the same time or later with TMC125 as breakthrough from wild-type HIV-1 with efavirenz or nevirapine. The selection experiments identified mutations selected by TMC125 that included known NNRTI-associated mutations L100I, Y181C, G190E, M230L, and Y318F and the novel mutations V179I and V179F. Testing the antiviral activity of TMC125 against a panel of SDMs indicated that the impact of these individual mutations on resistance was highly dependent upon the presence and identity of coexisting mutations. These results demonstrate that TMC125 has a unique profile of activity against NNRTI-resistant virus and possesses a high genetic barrier to the development of resistance in vitro.
We investigated the relationship between the level of reverse transcriptase (RT) in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) particles and susceptibility to nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs). HIV-1 virions containing different active levels of RT were generated. Susceptibility to the NNRTIs efavirenz and nevirapine was inversely proportional to the level of enzymatically active RT. However, the sensitivity of HIV-1 to the nucleoside analog 3TC was not affected by the level of RT per particle. These data indicate that the susceptibility of HIV-1 to NNRTIs is influenced by RT activity.
Single-dose nevirapine (NVP) is quite effective in preventing transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) from mother to child; however, many women develop resistance to NVP in this setting. Comparing outcomes of clinical studies reveals an increased amount of resistance in subtype C relative to that in other subtypes. This study investigates how nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) drug resistance mutations of subtype C affect replication capacity. The 103N, 106A, 106M, 181C, 188C, 188L, and 190A drug resistance mutations were placed in a reverse transcriptase (RT) that matches the consensus subtype C sequence as well as the HXB2 RT, as a subtype B reference. The replicative fitness of each mutant was compared with that of the wild type in a head-to-head competition assay. The 106A mutant of subtype C would not grow in the competition assay, making it the weakest virus tested. The effect of the 106M mutation was weaker than those of the 181C and 188C mutations in the consensus C RT, but in subtype B, this difference was not seen. To see if the 106A mutation in a different subtype C background would have a different replicative profile, the same NNRTI resistance mutations were added to the MJ4 RT, a reference subtype C molecular clone. In the context of MJ4 RT, the 106A mutant was not the only mutant that showed poor replicative fitness; the 106M, 188C, and 190A mutants also failed to replicate. These results suggest that NNRTIs may be a cost-effective alternative for salvage therapy if deleterious mutations are present in a subtype C setting.
Heterosexual transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) remains the major route of infection worldwide; thus, there is an urgent need for additional prevention strategies, particularly strategies that could be controlled by women, such as topical microbicides. Potential microbicide candidates must be both safe and effective. Using cellular and tissue explant models, we have evaluated the activity of the nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) dapivirine as a vaginal microbicide. In tissue compatibility studies, dapivirine was well tolerated by epithelial cells, T cells, macrophages, and cervical tissue explants. Dapivirine demonstrated potent dose-dependent inhibitory effects against a broad panel of HIV type 1 isolates from different clades. Furthermore, dapivirine demonstrated potent activity against a wide range of NNRTI-resistant isolates. In human cervical explant cultures, dapivirine was able not only to inhibit direct infection of mucosal tissue but also to prevent the dissemination of the virus by migratory cells. Activity was retained in the presence of semen or a cervical mucus simulant. Furthermore, dapivirine demonstrated prolonged inhibitory effects: it was able to prevent both localized and disseminated infection for as long as 6 days posttreatment. The prolonged protection observed following pretreatment of genital tissue and the lack of observable toxicity suggest that dapivirine has considerable promise as a potential microbicide candidate.
We identified clinical isolates with phenotypic resistance to nevirapine (NVP) in the absence of known nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) mutations. This resistance is caused by N348I, a mutation at the connection subdomain of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) reverse transcriptase (RT). Virologic analysis showed that N348I conferred multiclass resistance to NNRTIs (NVP and delavirdine) and to nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (zidovudine [AZT] and didanosine [ddI]). N348I impaired HIV-1 replication in a cell-type-dependent manner. Acquisition of N348I was frequently observed in AZT- and/or ddI-containing therapy (12.5%; n = 48; P < 0.0001) and was accompanied with thymidine analogue-associated mutations, e.g., T215Y (n = 5/6) and the lamivudine resistance mutation M184V (n = 1/6) in a Japanese cohort. Molecular modeling analysis shows that residue 348 is proximal to the NNRTI-binding pocket and to a flexible hinge region at the base of the p66 thumb that may be affected by the N348I mutation. Our results further highlight the role of connection subdomain residues in drug resistance.
Etravirine (ETR) is a second-generation nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase (RT) inhibitor (NNRTI) active against common human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) drug-resistant strains. This study was designed to determine the extent to which each of the Y181C or G190A mutations in RT might confer resistance to ETR and other members of the NNRTI family of drugs. Recombinant HIV-1 RT enzymes containing either the Y181C or the G190A mutation, or both mutations in tandem, were purified. Both RNA- and DNA-dependent DNA polymerase assays were performed in order to determine the extent to which each of these mutations might confer resistance in cell-free biochemical assays against each of ETR, efavirenz, and nevirapine. Both the biochemical and the cell-based phenotypic assays confirmed the susceptibility of G190A-containing enzymes and viruses to ETR. The results of this study indicate that the G190A mutation is not associated with resistance to ETR.
Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) strains resistant to nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) may easily be selected for in vitro and in vivo under a suboptimal therapy regimen. Although cross-resistance is extensive within this class of compounds, newer NNRTIs were reported to retain activity against laboratory strains containing defined resistance-associated mutations. We have characterized HIV-1 resistance to loviride and the extent of cross-resistance to nevirapine, delavirdine, efavirenz, HBY-097, and tivirapine in a set of 24 clinical samples from patients treated with long-term loviride monotherapy by using a recombinant virus assay. Genotypic changes associated with resistance were analyzed by population sequencing. Overall, phenotypic resistance to loviride ranged from 0.04 to 3.47 log10-fold. Resistance was observed in samples from patients who had discontinued loviride for up to 27 months. Cross-resistance to the other compounds was extensive; however, fold resistance to efavirenz was significantly lower than fold resistance to nevirapine. No genotypic changes were detected in three samples; these were sensitive to all of the NNRTIs tested. The most common genotypic change was the K103N substitution. The range of phenotypic resistance in samples containing the K103N substitution could not be predicted from a genotypic analysis of known NNRTI resistance-associated mutations. The Y181C substitution was detected in one isolate which was resistant to loviride and delavirdine but sensitive to efavirenz, HBY-097, and tivirapine. Our data indicate that the available newer NNRTIs which retain activity against some HIV-1 strains selected by other compounds of this class in vitro may have compromised clinical efficacy in some patients pretreated with NNRTI.