Antiviral hyperactivation-limiting therapeutics as a novel class for the treatment of HIV/AIDS: Focus on VS411

Alessia Uglietti, Renato Maserati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Immune activation plays a central pathogenetic role in both HIV-1 replication and depletion of CD4 + T cells leading to disease progression and the onset of the AIDS. While current antiretroviral therapies suppress viral replication to undetectable levels, they do not normalize the excessive level of T-cell activation and proliferation. A new class of anti-HIV-1 drugs known as antiviral hyperactivation-limiting therapeutics (AV-HALTs) combines direct antiviral activity with an antiproliferative action to limit the hyperactivation of the immune system now recognized as the key driver of the progressive loss of CD4 + T cells that occurs over the natural course of the HIV-1 infection. Areas covered: Areas covered include preclinical, Phase I and Phase IIa studies of VS411, the first drug product in a novel class of anti-HIV drugs, AV-HALT agents. Expert opinion: The two drug combination VS411 safely achieved the goals established for the AV-HALT class based on the results of a Phase IIA proof-of-concept study. Additional work is underway to identify and develop new agents that combine the dual attributes of AV-HALTs, direct reduction of both HIV-1 viral load and markers of excessive immune activation, in a single molecule.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-565
Number of pages7
JournalExpert Opinion on Investigational Drugs
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2011


  • antiretroviral therapy
  • AV-HALTs
  • HIV-1
  • immunomodulating drug
  • VS411

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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