FDA Approval for Tivicay
The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Tivicay (dolutegravir) for the treatment of HIV-1 infection.
The drug is an integrase strand transfer inhibitor that works by interfering with one of the enzymes necessary for HIV to multiply. This has a double-effect on the HIV:
- It reduces the amount of HIV-1 in the bloodstream (known as the viral load)
- It increases the amount of white blood cells, known as CD4+ cells, so that the individual’s immunity is increased
These effects combined mean that a patient’s condition can be held at the HIV stage for as long as possible, thus delaying the onset of AIDS.
Tivicay is not, however, a one-stop shop for sufferers; individuals will still need to take antiretroviral drugs to manage their HIV as well as any other medication that they may need to manage the symptoms of their condition. It’s main benefit is that it works in a novel way to current medications so is vitally important in the fight against this viral disease.
According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, 50’000 new cases of HIV are diagnosed each year so finding new drugs to halt viral progression is a hot topic in the pharmaceutical world.
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The above image shows a HIV-1 molecule and is supplied courtesy of Design Culture Lab http://www.designculturelab.org/2009/09/16/visualisation-materialisation-and-affect/hiv1-784396/