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Newsletter

RNAi and HIV

A review of scientific research into RNAi and HIV.

Applied RNAi
Edited by: Patrick Arbuthnot and Marc S. Weinberg
RNAi experts critically review the most interesting advances in basic applied RNAi research, highlight the applications in RNAi-based therapies and discuss the technical hurdles that remain.
read more ...
RNA Interference and Viruses
Edited by: Miguel Angel Martínez
Expert RNAi specialists from around the world have teamed up to produce a timely and thought-provoking review of the area.
"a comprehensive review" (Microbiology Today) "a timely and well-compiled book" (Expert Review of Vaccines); "a timely and useful review" (Quart. Rev. Biol.) read more ...

RNAi and HIV

Adapted from Premlata Shankar and Judy Lieberman in HIV Chemotherapy
RNAi and HIV: The introduction of Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART) has ameliorated the course of HIV disease considerably in the developed world. However, the prospect of life-long HAART therapy poses significant practical problems, including toxicity, difficulties with adherence, high cost and drug resistance . These limitations suggest a clear need for innovative therapies that are less expensive, less toxic and/or require less frequent dosing. Using nucleic acids as "anti-HIV genes" to make cells resistant to the virus is an alternative antiviral approach. The recent discovery of RNA interference (RNAi), a powerful mechanism of homology-dependent gene silencing, has opened up a new possible type of therapy. RNAi is an ancient endogenous antiviral defense mechanism that exists in organisms as diverse as algae, fungi, plants and animals including mammals. Although the molecular processes underlying the phenomenon are just beginning to be unraveled, the prospect of harnessing RNAi technology as a therapeutic tool against HIV-1 has become an active area of research.

RNAi and Viruses

Adapted from Miguel Angel Martínez in RNA Interference and Viruses: Current Innovations and Future Trends
RNAi and viruses: Since its discovery in 1998, RNA interference (RNAi) has heralded the advent of novel tools for biological research and drug discovery. This exciting new technology is emerging as a powerful modality for battling some of the most notoriously challenging viral clinical targets such as hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). However, several critical issues associated with this novel technology must be resolved before it can progress to testing in human clinical trials, and these have been the target of intensive research in recent years.

Retroviruses

Adapted from Reinhard Kurth and Norbert Bannert in Retroviruses: Molecular Biology, Genomics and Pathogenesis
Retroviruses: Since its discovery in 1998, RNA interference (RNAi) has heralded the advent of novel tools for biological research and drug discovery. This exciting new technology is emerging as a powerful modality for battling some of the most notoriously challenging viral clinical targets such as hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). However, several critical issues associated with this novel technology must be resolved before it can progress to testing in human clinical trials, and these have been the target of intensive research in recent years.

Lentiviruses

Adapted from Moira Desport in Lentiviruses and Macrophages: Molecular and Cellular Interactions
Lentiviruses: Lentiviruses comprise a genus of diverse viruses in the Retroviridae family which are united in their ability to infect and persist in macrophages. Infections are characterized by immune system dysfunctions following sometimes lengthy incubation periods. The viruses in this genus include primate lentiviruses such as HIV as well as animal lentiviruses including equine infectious anemia virus (EIAV). An intriguing feature of lentiviruses is their ability to hijack macrophages so that they are simultaneously involved in the dissemination and control of virus spread throughout the host, leading to disease induction and/or transmission to a new host. Macrophage biology is at an exciting stage with a wealth of new information being generated as their role in parasitic, viral and bacterial infections as well as in chronic inflammatory and autoimmune disease is dissected. Despite the devastating infections that lentiviruses cause, they also have enormous potential as research tools due to their ability to integrate into the host genome and are being exploited for use as delivery vehicles in gene therapy. Understanding the lentiviral-macrophage interaction is vital for developing novel antiviral strategies and will permit their use as research tools to be fully realised


RNAi and HIV Resources

Anti-HIV Chemotherapy
RNAi
RNAi and HIV
Molecular Biology Gateway