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New HIV drug success

13th April 2007

The results from early clinical trials of a new class of drugs targetting the HIV virus look promising, according to a report in The Lancet.

Integrase-inhibitors block an enzyme which the HIV virus needs to replicate itself. One of this class of drugs, raltegravir, produced marked improvements in 178 patients with advanced HIV.

They showed an average fall of 98% in their HIV RNA count after 24 weeks of treatment with raltegravir, compared with a 45% drop in the placebo group, the study showed.

The participants had been taking existing antiretrovirals for 10 years, but had not responded well to those treatments, suggesting the new drug would be particularly effective in cases of HIV drug resistance, it said.


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