DDX3X inhibitors, an effective way to overcome HIV-1 resistance targeting host proteins

Annalaura Brai, Valentina Riva, Francesco Saladini, Claudio Zamperini, Claudia Immacolata Trivisani, Anna Garbelli, Carla Pennisi, Alessia Giannini, Adele Boccuto, Francesca Bugli, Maurizio Martini, Maurizio Sanguinetti, Maurizio Zazzi, Elena Dreassi, Maurizio Botta, Giovanni Maga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The huge resources that had gone into Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV) research led to the development of potent antivirals able to suppress viral load in the majority of treated patients, thus dramatically increasing the life expectancy of people living with HIV. However, life-long treatments could result in the emergence of drug-resistant viruses that can progressively reduce the number of therapeutic options, facilitating the progression of the disease. In this scenario, we previously demonstrated that inhibitors of the human DDX3X helicase can represent an innovative approach for the simultaneous treatment of HIV and other viral infections such as Hepatitis c virus (HCV). We reported herein 6b, a novel DDX3X inhibitor that thanks to its distinct target of action is effective against HIV-1 strains resistant to currently approved drugs. Its improved in vitro ADME properties allowed us to perform preliminary in vivo studies in mice, which highlighted optimal biocompatibility and an improved bioavailability. These results represent a significant advancement in the development of DDX3X inhibitors as a novel class of broad spectrum and safe anti-HIV-1 drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112319
JournalEuropean Journal of Medicinal Chemistry
Publication statusPublished - Aug 15 2020


  • Antiviral agents
  • Coinfections
  • DDX3X
  • Drug resistance
  • HIV-1
  • Host factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry


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