Raltegravir, the only integrase (IN) inhibitor approved for use in HIV therapy, has recently been licensed. Raltegravir inhibits HIV-1 replication by blocking the IN strand transfer reaction. More than 30 mutations have been associated with resistance to raltegravir and other IN strand transfer inhibitors (INSTIs). The majority of the mutations are located in the vicinity of the IN active site within the catalytic core domain which is also the binding pocket for INSTIs. High-level resistance to INSTIs primarily involves three independent mutations at residues Q148, N155, and Y143. The mutations significantly affect replication capacity of the virus and are often accompanied by other mutations that either improve replication fitness and/or increase resistance to the inhibitors. The pattern of development of INSTI resistance mutations has been extensively studied in vitro and in vivo. This has been augmented by cell-based phenotypic studies and investigation of the mechanisms of resistance using biochemical assays. The recent elucidation of the structure of the prototype foamy virus IN, which is closely related to HIV-1, in complex with INSTIs has greatly enhanced our understanding of the evolution and mechanisms of IN drug resistance.
- Drug resistance
- Integrase inhibitors