Sebla B. Kutluay, PhD
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Washington University in St. Louis (WU)
We have recently discovered that HIV-1 Integrase protein regulates particle maturation, a role completely independent of its catalytic activity. This involves the binding of integrase to viral RNA molecules, which ensures the encapsidation of viral RNA and IN in the viral core. Remarkably, integrase-RNA interactions can be targeted by a novel class of compounds that are currently in clinical trials. Our goal is to discover novel compounds that directly target integrase-RNA interactions and determine their mechanism of action, which will be of great value in the clinical setting.