The management of Human Immunodeficiency Virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection requires life-long treatment that is associated with chronic toxicity and possible selection of drug-resistant strains. A new opportunity for drug intervention is offered by antivirals that act as allosteric inhibitors targeting two viral functions (dual inhibitors). In this work, we investigated the effects of 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid (DHICA) derivatives on both HIV-1 Integrase (IN) and Reverse Transcriptase associated Ribonuclease H (RNase H) activities. Among the tested compounds, the dihydroxyindole-carboxamide 5 was able to inhibit in the low micromolar range (1-18 μM) multiple functions of IN, including functional IN-IN interactions, IN-LEDGF/p75 binding and IN catalytic activity. Docking and site-directed mutagenesis studies have suggested that compound 5 binds to a previously described HIV-1 IN allosteric pocket. These observations indicate that 5 is structurally and mechanistically distinct from the published allosteric HIV-1 IN inhibitors. Moreover, compound 5 also inhibited HIV-1 RNase H function, classifying this molecule as a dual HIV-1 IN and RNase H inhibitor able to impair the HIV-1 virus replication in cell culture. Overall, we identified a new scaffold as a suitable platform for the development of novel dual HIV-1 inhibitors.
Keywords: Dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acids; HIV dual inhibitors; IN; IN-LEDGF binding inhibitors; RNase H; Sucrose binding site.
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