by Valérie Vivet-Boudou, Catherine Isel, Marwan Sleiman, Redmond Smyth, Nouha Ben Gaied, Patrick Barhoum, Géraldine Laumond, Guillaume Bec, Matthias Götte, Johnson Mak, Anne-Marie Aubertin, Alain Burger, Roland Marquet
The occurrence of resistant viruses to any of the anti-HIV-1 compounds used in the current therapies against AIDS underlies the urge for the development of new drug targets and/or new drugs acting through novel mechanisms. While all anti-HIV-1 nucleoside analogues in clinical use and in clinical trials rely on ribose modifications for activity, we designed nucleosides with a natural deoxyribose moiety and modifications of position 8 of the adenine base. Such modifications might induce a steric clash with helix aH in the thumb domain of the p66 subunit of HIV-1 RT at a distance from the catalytic site, causing delayed chain termination. Eleven new 2'-deoxyadenosine analogues modified on position 8 of the purine base were synthesized and tested in vitro and in cell-based assays. In this paper we demonstrate for the first time that chemical modifications on position 8 of 2'-deoxyadenosine induce delayed chain termination in vitro, and also inhibit DNA synthesis when incorporated in a DNA template strand. Furthermore, one of them had moderate anti-HIV-1 activity in cell-culture. Our results constitute a proof of concept indicating that modification on the base moiety of nucleosides can induce delayed polymerization arrest and inhibit HIV-1 replication.