Pharmacy World and Science

, Volume 26, Issue 3, pp 133–136 | Cite as

Increasing number of anti-HIV drugs but no definite cure Review of anti-HIV drugs

  • Leo M.L. Stolk
  • Jos F.J. Lüers


Aim: This review surveys the different classes of drugs.

Method: We searched electronic databases and selected articles about pharmacotherapy with anti-retroviral drugs.

Results: We discuss anti-retroviral drugs: the nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs), the non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs), and the protease inhibitors (PIs). The combination of a PI and two NRTIs is very effective and lowers the viral load to below the limit of detection. However, it is not yet possible to eliminate the virus completely. Recently, the first member of a brand new class of drugs has become available, the fusion inhibitor enfuvirtide. We also discuss the problems associated with combining anti-retroviral drugs, such as compliance, resistance and serious side effects.

Discussion. It is important to investigate new combinations with new classes of drugs, like the fusion inhibitors, for better effectiveness and fewer side effects.

AIDS Anti-HIV drugs Anti-retroviral HIV Nucleoside reverse trancriptase inhibitors Protease inhibitors Fusion inhibitors 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Borleff JCC, Danner SA, Lange JMA, van Everdingen JJE. CBO richtlijn antiretrovirale behandeling in Nederland. [CBO guidelines: anti-retroviral treatment in the Netherlands.] Ned Tijdschr Geneesk 2001; 136: 1585–9.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Gallant JE. Initial therapy of HIV infections. J Clin Virol 2002; 25: 317–33.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Chapman T, McGavin J, Noble S. Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. Drugs 2003; 63: 1597–608.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Moyle G. Stopping HIV fusion with enfuvirtide: the first step to extracellular HAART. J Antimicrob Chem 2003; 51: 213–17.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    de Maat MM, Ekhart GC, Huitema AD, Koks CH, Mulder JW, Beynen JH. Drug interactions between antiretroviral drugs and comedicated agents. Clin Pharmacokinet 2003; 42: 223–83Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hansten PD, Horn JR. Hansten and Horn's interactions analysis and management. Edmonds, Washington: H&H Publications, 1999.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Drechsler H, Powderly WG. Switching effective antiretroviral therapy: a review. Clin Infect Dis 2002; 35: 1219–30.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Deeks SG, Wrin T, Lieger T, Hoh R, Hayden M, Helmm NS et al. Virological and immunological consequences of discontinuing combination antiretroviral-drug therapy in HIV-infected patients with detectable viremia. N Engl J Med 2001; 344: 472–80.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Aarnoutse RE, Schapiro JM, Boucher CAB, Hekster YA, Burger DM. Therapeutic drug monitoring an aid to optimizing response to antiretroviral drugs? Drugs 2003; 63: 741–53.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leo M.L. Stolk
    • 1
  • Jos F.J. Lüers
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Pharmacy and ToxicologyUniversity Hospital of MaastrichtMaastrichtThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Pharmacy HanzepleinGroningenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations