Discovery (Lead Identification)
The subject invention describes a new class of compounds (such as peptides or mimetics) that target viral RNAs and inhibit the viral life cycle by blocking the viral recognition process. More specifically, these compounds are the first against an RNA Target - currently there are no clinical drugs against RNA targets in the treatment of any type of human disease. Anti-HIV drugs currently on the market are complicated by the development of resistance and substantial side-effects; however, these compounds would unlikely develop any side effects because of their very high specificity against only viral RNA. In addition, these compounds may be further linked to a detectable label. Thus, these compounds have the potential to be used as a new class of systemic drugs for the treatment of HIV infection and to be developed into diagnostic kits or devices.