Azidothymidine See AZT

AZT (azidothymidine) A synthetic pyrimi-dine dideoxynucleoside analog that inhibits replication of retroviruses, including HIV by interfering with DNA synthesis mediated by the viral reverse transcriptase. AZT-5'-triphosphate interacts preferentially with reverse transcriptase rather than cell DNA poly-merase. The use of this drug by oral administration in vivo is recommended for reducing viral load, restoring T cell function, and prolonging life in persons with clinical AIDS. It is also recommended for use in HIV-infected pregnant women in order to reduce the risk of transmission of HIV to the baby. The drug is toxic to dividing cells such as bone marrow cells, and drug-resistant HIV mutants arise readily; the benefits of AZT therapy need to be balanced against these opposing factors. Synonyms: 3'-azido-2',3'-dideoxythymi-dine; AZT; azidothymidine; retrovir; zidovudine.

de Clercq E (1993) Adv Virus Res 42,1 de Clercq E (1995) Rev Med Virol 5, 149

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