Navigation Links
HIV researchers solve key puzzle after 20 years of trying
Date:1/31/2010

Researchers have made a breakthrough in HIV research that had eluded scientists for over 20 years, potentially leading to better treatments for HIV, in a study published today in the journal Nature.

The researchers, from Imperial College London and Harvard University, have grown a crystal that reveals the structure of an enzyme called integrase, which is found in retroviruses like HIV. When HIV infects someone, it uses integrase to paste a copy of its genetic information into their DNA.

Prior to the new study, which was funded by the Medical Research Council and the US National Institutes of Health, many researchers had tried and failed to work out the three-dimensional structure of integrase bound to viral DNA. New antiretroviral drugs for HIV work by blocking integrase, but scientists did not understand exactly how these drugs were working or how to improve them.

Researchers can only determine the structure of this kind of molecular machinery by obtaining high quality crystals. For the new study, researchers grew a crystal using a version of integrase borrowed from a little-known retrovirus called Prototype Foamy Virus (PFV). Based on their knowledge of PFV integrase and its function, they were confident that it was very similar to its HIV counterpart.

Over the course of four years, the researchers carried out over 40,000 trials, out of which they were able to grow just seven kinds of crystals. Only one of these was of sufficient quality to allow determination of the three-dimensional structure.

Dr Peter Cherepanov, the lead author of the study from the Department of Medicine at Imperial College London, said: "It is a truly amazing story. When we started out, we knew that the project was very difficult, and that many tricks had already been tried and given up by others long ago. Therefore, we went back to square one and started by looking for a better model of HIV integrase, which could be more amenable for crystallization. Despite initially painstakingly slow progress and very many failed attempts, we did not give up and our effort was finally rewarded."

After growing the crystals in the lab, the researchers used the giant synchrotron machine at the Diamond Light Source in South Oxfordshire to collect X-ray diffraction data from these crystals, which enabled them to determine the long-sought structure. The researchers then soaked the crystals in solutions of the integrase inhibiting drugs Raltegravir (also known as Isentress) and Elvitegravir and observed for the first time how these antiretroviral drugs bind to and inactivate integrase.

The new study shows that retroviral integrase has quite a different structure to that which had been predicted based on earlier research. Availability of the integrase structure means that researchers can begin to fully understand how existing drugs that inhibit integrase are working, how they might be improved, and how to stop HIV developing resistance to them.


'/>"/>

Contact: Laura Gallagher
l.gallagher@imperial.ac.uk
44-020-759-48432
Imperial College London
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Stanford researchers find culprit in aging muscles that heal poorly
2. UCLA researchers identify markers that may predict diabetes in still-healthy people
3. Mayo Clinic researchers discover new diagnostic test for detecting infection in prosthetic joints
4. Bipolar disorder relapses halved by Melbourne researchers
5. Cell that triggers symptoms in allergy attacks can also limit damage, Stanford researchers find
6. High and mighty: first common height gene identified by researchers behind obesity gene finding
7. Researchers estimate about 9 percent of US children age 8 to 15 meet criteria for having ADHD
8. Majority of 2.4 Million U.S. Children With ADHD Not Diagnosed or Consistently Treated, According to New Gold Standard Study by Cincinnati Childrens Researchers
9. Researchers develop long-lasting growth hormone
10. Jefferson immunology researchers halt lethal rabies infection in brain
11. Purdue researchers develop technology to detect cancer by scanning surface veins
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/17/2017)... Los Gatos, CA (PRWEB) , ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... today announced the results of a double blind clinical study for its dental gel ... to a leading national brand of toothpaste containing triclosan. The study was conducted at ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Many people make New Year’s resolutions or renew their commitment to better health ... easier for people who want to kick off 2017 with better smiles. Dr. Mondavi is ... These special offers include: , , A new patient package for ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... Mesa, California (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... ... 2014, Dr. Beazley has served on CalSouthern’s Board of Trustees and as a core ... In addition, he has been a professor of psychology at Pepperdine University, where he ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... Houston dentist, Dr. Behzad Nazari, ... complimentary consultations and financing for orthodontics for a limited time. Complimentary for a ... about their orthodontic options. Walk-in, late-evening, Saturday, and same-day appointments are available. Antoine ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... St. Louisans are well-aware of the following ... This year’s influenza shot seems to be having no effect on keeping this ... least half of the people around are coughing, sneezing, or sniffling , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/17/2017)... Ind. , Jan. 17, 2017  Zimmer Biomet ... in musculoskeletal healthcare , today announced that ... on the strength of the Zimmer Biomet management ... Delp will assume the position of President, ... the Company. Mr. Delp previously served as Zimmer Biomet,s ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... their offering. ... The global laparotomy sponges market to grow at a CAGR of ... Sponges Market 2016-2020, has been prepared based on an in-depth market ... landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... 17, 2017  Maureen L. Mulvihill, President and ... of 6 senior sales leaders to support the ... sales leaders were formerly part of the top ... Repeatedly recognized for their performance, they have a ... establishing relationships with key customer constituencies. "I ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: