Development of anti-retroviral resistance of HIV-1 infected individuals on therapy: Is it inevitable?

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Highly active antiretroviral therapy directed against HIV-1 has dramatically modified morbidity and mortality in infected individuals. Enthusiasm for the success of these medications have been tempered by an inability to clear virus from the infected host leaving a virus poised to leverage any advantage into one of productive survival. One mechanism used to accomplish escape from suppression secondary to antiretroviral therapy is by developing mutations. The goal of therapy has been to diminish viral replication, thereby effectively abrogating the development of these resistance-bearing mutations. This strategy has met with significant success but numerous host-viral factors impact on the ability of the clinician to persistently suppress viral load, thereby providing a window of opportunity for the virus to mutate. In particular we review evidence for ongoing viral replication in the face of suppressive antiretroviral therapy and viral replication in tissue compartments. We discuss whether viral resistance can develop during transient elevations in viral load (viral blips) or as a function of the rate of viral load decay while on therapy. Finally, we touch on the therapeutic strategy that diminished viral replication capacity of mutational species can maintain host immunity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-307
Number of pages7
JournalIUBMB life
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2004


  • Antiretroviral resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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