This summary provides an overview of investigational antiviral agents for influenza and of future directions for development of influenza therapeutics. While progress in developing clinically useful antiviral agents for influenza has been generally slow, especially with respect to seriously ill and high-risk patients, important clinical studies of intravenous neuraminidase inhibitors, antibodies and drug combinations are currently in progress. The current decade offers the promise of developing small molecular weight inhibitors with novel mechanisms of action, including host-directed therapies, new biotherapeutics and drug combinations, that should provide more effective antiviral therapies and help mitigate the problem of antiviral resistance. Immunomodulatory interventions also offer promise but need to be based on better understanding of influenza pathogenesis, particularly in seriously ill patients. The development of combination interventions, immunomodulators and host-directed therapies presents unique clinical trial design and regulatory hurdles that remain to be addressed.
© 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.