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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Virus chemotherapy: antiviral drugs and interferon.

Early antiviral drugs, such as idoxuridine and vidarabine, are less effective than newer drugs, such as trifluorothymidine and acyclovir. However, trifluorothymidine is less subject to the development of drug-resistant strains and can be administered topically as a clear drop, which increases patient compliance. Acyclovir has low toxicity and is selective for virus-infected cells because it must be phosphorylated by the viral thymidine kinase to become active. However, drug-resistant strains are produced relatively easily in vitro and may also develop in man with long-term use. To date, no antiviral drug alone has been shown to be effective in the treatment of stromal disease, and no antiviral drug is able to eradicate virus latent in the ganglia and thereby prevent recurrent herpetic infections. Combinations of antiviral drugs and antiviral drugs and interferon are being tested for enhanced efficacy in the treatment of ocular herpetic disease, and for prophylactic effects. The development of recombinant interferons has reduced cost and increased availability, but the effects of the 'manufactured' interferon are not identical to those of natural human leukocyte interferon in all experimental situations.[1]


  1. Virus chemotherapy: antiviral drugs and interferon. Kaufman, H.E., Varnell, E.D., Centifanto-Fitzgerald, Y.M., Sanitato, J.G. Antiviral Res. (1984) [Pubmed]
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