A hepatitis C virus (HCV) epidemic affecting HIV-infected men who have sex with men (MSM) is expanding worldwide. In spite of the improved cure rates obtained with the new direct-acting antiviral drug (DAA) combinations, the high rate of reinfection within this population calls urgently for novel preventive interventions. In this study, we determined in cell culture and ex vivo experiments with human colorectal tissue that lipoquads, G-quadruplex DNA structures fused to cholesterol, are efficient HCV pangenotypic entry and cell-to-cell transmission inhibitors. Thus, lipoquads may be promising candidates for the development of rectally applied gels to prevent HCV transmission.
Keywords: DNA G-quadruplex structures; HCV cell-to-cell inhibitor; HCV entry inhibitor; HCV pangenotypic inhibitor; antiviral treatment; oligonucleotide-cholesterol conjugates.
Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.