Links To And Excerpts From “A review: Mechanism of action of antiviral drugs”

Today, I review, link to and excerpt from A review: Mechanism of action of antiviral drugs. [PubMed Abstract] [Full-Text HTML] [Full-Text PDF]. Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol. 2021 Jan-Dec:35:20587384211002621. doi: 10.1177/20587384211002621.

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Antiviral drugs are a class of medicines particularly used for the treatment of viral infections. Drugs that combat viral infections are called antiviral drugs. Viruses are among the major pathogenic agents that cause number of serious diseases in humans, animals and plants. Viruses cause many diseases in humans, from self resolving diseases to acute fatal diseases. Developing strategies for the antiviral drugs are focused on two different approaches: Targeting the viruses themselves or the host cell factors. Antiviral drugs that directly target the viruses include the inhibitors of virus attachment, inhibitors of virus entry, uncoating inhibitors, polymerase inhibitors, protease inhibitors, inhibitors of nucleoside and nucleotide reverse transcriptase and the inhibitors of integrase. The inhibitors of protease (ritonavir, atazanavir and darunavir), viral DNA polymerase (acyclovir, tenofovir, valganciclovir and valacyclovir) and of integrase (raltegravir) are listed among the Top 200 Drugs by sales during 2010s. Still no effective antiviral drugs are available for many viral infections. Though, there are a couple of drugs for herpesviruses, many for influenza and some new antiviral drugs for treating hepatitis C infection and HIV. Action mechanism of antiviral drugs consists of its transformation to triphosphate following the viral DNA synthesis inhibition. An analysis of the action mechanism of known antiviral drugs concluded that they can increase the cell’s resistance to a virus (interferons), suppress the virus adsorption in the cell or its diffusion into the cell and its deproteinisation process in the cell (amantadine) along with antimetabolites that causes the inhibition of nucleic acids synthesis. This review will address currently used antiviral drugs, mechanism of action and antiviral agents reported against COVID-19.

Keywords: antiviral drugs; integrase inhibitors; mechanism of action; nucleoside and nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors; protease inhibitors; viral infections.


The fight between human and viruses in on and both are rapidly improving the strategies of attacking and defence. In recent years, there has been tremendous progress in understanding the genetic basis and molecular mechanism of diseases. Various new drugs have been formulated and the development of a lot more is in underway. Though, the new infectious diseases caused by viruses such as COVID-19 remain a challenge. Furthermore, the drugs failure in human trials is a general process that requires to be worked out and addressed. The promising results are expected through the emergence of many new technologies. A greater help in the development of new drugs with antiviral activities is provided by the growing knowledge about viruses and the rapidly developing techniques and tools. The better understanding about viruses will make it possible to establish useful measures for fighting against the viral diseases and the researchers around the globe are putting their possible efforts to control the spread of viral diseases and we hope that we live in the world free from viral diseases.

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