This technology includes an oral treatment for HIV infection. Nipamovir is a low molecular weight mercaptobenzamide derivative that is simple to produce on kilogram scale and which can be used to lower or eliminate the infectivity of HIV. Extended treatment of Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV)-infected macaques with Nipamovir lowers the viral load by 1 log unit, and eliminates the ability of remaining virus to infect other cells. Nipamovir shows similar antiviral activity in HIV-infected human cells. There are no toxic side-effects observed in animal studies with Nipamovir. Nipamovir is a simple small molecule that is not expensive or difficult to synthesize. It inactivates HIV by a complicated mechanism of action that involves interference with final maturation steps of the virus, which provides a very high barrier for HIV to develop resistance. Laboratory experiments designed to encourage HIV to develop resistance to Nipamovir have all failed.
Nipamovir has a low toxicity profile, a high barrier to viral resistance, and is inexpensive to produce.