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Tenofovir (Molecule of the Month for May 2007)

Viread, Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, TDF

Tenofovir is a class of antiretroviral drugs known as nucleotide analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NtRTIs), which block reverse transcriptase, an enzyme crucial to viral production in HIV-infected people.

When HIV infects a cell, reverse transcriptase copies the viral single stranded RNA genome into a double-stranded viral DNA. The viral DNA is then integrated into the host chromosomal DNA which then allows host cellular processes, such as transcription and translation to reproduce the virus. RTIs block reverse transcriptase's enzymatic function and prevent completion of synthesis of the double-stranded viral DNA thus preventing HIV from multiplying.

Tenofovir was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on October 26, 2001. It is currently in late-stage clinical trials for the treatment of hepatitis B.

Formal Chemical Name (IUPAC)
(R)-(1-(6-amino-9H-purin-9-yl)propan-2-yloxy)methylphosphonic acid



Picture of Tenofovir

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Tenofovir structure
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Picture of Tenofovir

C9 H14 N5 O4 P

Update by Karl Harrison
(Molecule of the Month for May 2007 )