Genetic barriers to resistance and impact on clinical response

MedGenMed. 2005 Jul 7;7(3):69.


The development of drug resistance and cross-resistance continues to pose a challenge to successful long-term antiretroviral therapy despite the availability of new antiretroviral agents. The genetic barrier to resistance of a regimen does not directly correlate with its effectiveness. For some regimens with a low genetic barrier to resistance, however, the emergence of only 1 or 2 key resistance mutations may confer drug resistance not only to that regimen but also to other agents, thereby limiting subsequent treatment options. In addition to the genetic barrier to resistance, factors such as efficacy, safety, tolerability, convenience, and adherence must be considered when choosing a regimen.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active*
  • Drug Resistance, Viral*
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Infections / virology*
  • Humans
  • Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Treatment Failure


  • Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors