University of Missouri School of Medicine MU Health School of Medicine
News Divider
            


Stefan Sarafianos, PhD
Stefan Sarafianos, PhD, assistant professor of microbiology and immunology at the MU School of Medicine, has identified a new mutation that allows HIV to elude treatment. His research recently appeared in the Journal of Biological Chemistry and Nature Structural & Molecular Biology.


New Discoveries Make it Harder for HIV to Hide from Drugs


How the virus can escape even the best cocktail of treatments described in Nature journal

The virus that causes AIDS is chameleon-like in its replication. As HIV copies itself in humans, it constantly mutates into forms that can evade even the best cocktail of current therapies. Understanding exactly how HIV cells change as they reproduce is key to developing better tests and treatments for patients.

In the Journal of Biological Chemistry and Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, MU microbiologist and biochemist Stefan Sarafianos, PhD, reveals new findings that shed light on how HIV eludes treatment by mutating. His discoveries provide clues into HIV's mechanisms for resisting two main families of drugs.

"These findings are important because identifying a new mutation that affects HIV drug resistance allows physicians to make better decisions and prescribe the proper drugs," Sarafianos said. "Without that knowledge, therapy can be suboptimal and lead to early failure."

Patients with HIV are routinely tested to track the levels of the virus and immune cells in their body. Results of the tests help physicians gauge the health of their patients and prescribe the right mix of antiviral drugs. The drugs help prevent the spread of HIV in patients by inhibiting the virus' ability to replicate.

Sarafianos' lab determined the biochemical properties that allow strains of HIV with a specific mutation — the N348I mutation — to escape inhibition despite treatment with Nevirapine. The drug is commonly used in combination with other antiviral medications to decrease the amount of HIV in the blood. As a result of Sarafianos' discovery, at least one major company that manufactures HIV mutation-testing kits has modified its test to detect the N348I mutation.

Sarafianos' recent findings resulted from research supported by five National Institutes of Health grants. He recently received another $417,000 award from the NIH to assist him in developing modified antibodies for HIV therapy.

"Our latest efforts to design broadly neutralizing antibodies against HIV will hopefully expand our toolbox against the virus, which remains a constantly moving target," Sarafianos said.



MU Health Magazine

Divider

News and Events

Patrice Delafontaine MU School of Medicine Dean Inducted into Prestigious Medical Society
Delafontaine joins elite group of physicians in American Clinical and Climatological Association
Steven Zweig MU Family Medicine Ranked Among Nation’s Best by U.S. News & World Report
Department has been in top 10 for 23 consecutive years
Uzma Khan MU Initiative Helps Rural Doctors Treat Chronic Pain
Show-Me ECHO to offer special training session April 28
Legacy Teachers MU School of Medicine Program Expands to Other Medical Schools
MU’s Legacy Teachers program lets students recognize patients as educators
Susan Nagel Oil and Gas Wastewater Disposal May Increase Endocrine Disrupting Activity
Scientists draw conclusions after study at natural gas and oil extraction wastewater disposal facility
St. Baldricks 2016 Participants Go Bald for Childhood Cancer Research
Community donates more than $40,000 to the cause
Casey Holliday Holliday Recognized for Evolutionary Research
Anatomy researcher receives Young Investigator Award
Diversity and Inclusion Medical Students, Faculty Discuss Diversity, Inclusion
MU School of Medicine hosts gathering at Student National Medical Association annual meeting
Stevermer A Better Fix for Torn ACLs
Study validates newer surgical method for stronger, more natural ligament repair
Stevermer MU School of Medicine Professor to Serve on Elite Medical Society
James Stevermer, MD, to join the Health of the Public and Science Commissions
Khatri Improved Patient Outcomes Linked to Specific Health IT Resources in Hospitals
MU researcher says on-site health IT experts boost employee productivity in hospitals
William Durante Enzyme May Reduce Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Caused by HIV Medications
Study identifies enzyme that may counteract heart problems associated with antivirals
William Durante Enzyme May Reduce Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Caused by HIV Medications
Study identifies enzyme that may counteract heart problems associated with antivirals
Laura Morris Juggling Parenting Roles During Residency Training
Residency programs should include flexible scheduling, daycare, peer-to-peer support, MU researcher says
Match Day 2016 Match Day Brings New Beginnings for Medical Students
One hundred percent of the 2016 class received a residency program match
Fraser Nine Graduates and Supporters of MU School of Medicine to Receive Alumni Awards
Medical School Alumna Victoria Fraser to receive top honor
Sandeep Gautam Improved Imaging Takes X-ray Risks Out of the Picture
Study builds on previous research to show that fluoroless procedures are safer, just as effective
Karla Washington Women Report More Challenges Than Men When Caring for Terminally Ill Loved Ones
MU researcher finds female caretakers experience lower self-esteem, more negative effects



Media Relations
University of Missouri Health System
One Hospital Drive, DC028.00
Columbia, MO 65212
24/7 on-call pager: (573) 876-0708

Mary Jenkins
jenkinsmg@health.missouri.edu
(573) 882-7299

Jeff Hoelscher
hoelscherj@health.missouri.edu
(573) 884-1608

Derek Thompson
thompsonder@health.missouri.edu
(573) 882-3323

Diamond Dixon
DixonDi@health.missouri.edu
(573) 884-7541

Justin Kelley (Photographer)
kelleyju@health.missouri.edu
(573) 882-5786
Pager (573) 397-9289


Web Communications
University of Missouri Health System
One Hospital Drive, MA204G, DC018.00
Columbia, MO 65212
(573) 884-0298

Jennifer Orford
orfordj@health.missouri.edu
(573) 882-0298

Jesslyn Chew
chewj@missouri.edu
(573) 884-2891

Velvet Hasner
hasnerv@health.missouri.edu
(573) 884-1115

Justin Willett
willettj@health.missouri.edu
(573) 884-7740



Printer Friendly
Follow us on Twitter!   Facebook   YouTube Videos   Instagram   Pinterest  
Website created and maintained by the Office of Communications. Contact the MU School of Medicine.
Revised: April 27, 2013 - Copyright © 2014 - Curators of the University of Missouri. All rights reserved. DMCA and other copyright information. An equal opportunity/access/affirmative action/pro-disabled and veteran employer.