A correlation between increase in the integration of Human Immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) cDNA and cell death was previously established. Here we show that combination of peptides that stimulate integration together with the protease inhibitor Ro 31-8959 caused apoptotic cell death of HIV infected cells with total extermination of the virus. This combination did not have any effect on non-infected cells. Thus it appears that cell death is promoted only in the infected cells. It is our view that the results described in this work suggest a novel approach to specifically promote death of HIV-1 infected cells and thus may eventually be developed into a new and general anti-viral therapy.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Israeli Science Foundation (A. Loyter) and by a starting grant from the European Research Council (ERC) (to AF). Cells and WT HIV-1 virus were provided by the NIH Reagent Program, Division of AIDS, NIAID, NIH (Bethesda, MD, USA).