Does Your Treatment Fit? : Almost 20 Years of HIV Meds-and Look at Us Now - by Liz Highleyman

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Back to home » HIV 101 » POZ Focus » Does Your Treatment Fit?

Table of Contents

Does Your Treatment Fit?

Customizing Your Combo

Almost 20 Years of HIV Meds-and Look at Us Now

Two Treatment Tales


What You're Talking About
Let's Kick ASS - AIDS Survivor Syndrome (36 comments)

Why I Still (Kinda, Sorta) Go to the Gym (blog) (16 comments)

FDA Approves Gilead’s Hep C Drug Harvoni (via Hep) (9 comments)

Ebola vs. AIDS, Obama vs. Reagan (blog) (8 comments)

Health Care is a Human Right (8 comments)

90 Years Old and HIV Positive (7 comments)
Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle

Shingles

Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV


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Almost 20 Years of HIV Meds-and Look at Us Now

by Liz Highleyman

1987
Retrovir (AZT), the first drug to fight HIV, is approved. It’s a nuke (short for nucleoside analog). But pretty soon it’s clear that by itself, AZT can’t prevent HIV from mutating to get around it.

1994-95
Studies show that the handful of nukes on the market work better when used together. Combination therapy—the idea of getting more action against HIV by teaming meds up—is born.

1995-96
Approval of the first protease inhibitors (PIs): Invirase (saquinavir), Crixivan (indinavir)  and Norvir (ritonavir).‑Combin-ing PIs and nukes improves their punch, ushering in triple-drug therapy.

1996-98
More weapons against the virus: The --non-nukes (NNRTIs) debut, hitting HIV in a slightly different way than nukes.

1997
Drug makers put two nukes into a single pill (Combivir), creating the first ever fixed-dose combination.

1998-99
Oops. We notice bizarre side effects like body-fat accumulation and loss, and spiking levels of blood fats. These come to be known as lipodystrophy.

1999
It turns out PIs sometimes increase the levels of other meds. Small amounts of Norvir (ritonavir) can be used to “boost” other PIs so they work better and can be taken less often and in lower doses.

2000
Some non-nukes and Norvir-boosted PIs combine nicely with selected nukes into once-daily regimens.

2002
A new nuke named Viread (tenofovir) comes on the scene. It’s chemically different from other nukes but acts against HIV in the same way.

2003
The entry inhibitor Fuzeon (T-20) is approved—the first in a new class of HIV meds. Twice-daily injections are a drawback, so pharma gets to work developing a pill.

2003
Some newer PIs such as Reyataz (atazanavir) are less linked to lipo.

2004
Fixed-dose, once-daily combo pills (Epzicom and Truvada) become available.

2004-05
New classes of HIV meds—including CCR5 antagonists, HIV integrase inhibitors and maturation inhibitors—are in development.

2006
Drug makers announce that they’ve successfully combined two nukes (Emtriva and Viread) with the non-nuke Sustiva (efavirenz) in a single pill. If approved, it will be the first one-pill, once-a-day HIV regimen.



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