Oligonucleotide-based agents are emerging as potential therapeutic agents that can be attractive alternatives for the small-molecule chemical drugs. Monothiophosphate-backbone-modified DNA aptamers (thioaptamers) that specifically and tightly bind to the RNase H domain of the HIV RT (reverse transcriptase) have been isolated from nucleic acid libraries using combinatorial selection methods. The selected thioaptamer inhibited RNase H activity of the HIV RT in in vitro studies. In cell cultures, the transfected thioaptamer markedly reduced HIV production in a dose-dependent manner. Gel electrophoretic mobility-shift assays and NMR spectroscopy showed that the selected thioaptamer binds to the isolated RNase H domain, but did not bind to a structurally similar RNase H from Escherichia coli. In cell cultures, the transfected thioaptamer showed a dose-dependent inhibition of HIV replication, with a maximal inhibition of 83%. Using various liposome-delivery agents, the DNA thioaptamer was transfected into HIV-infected astrocytoma adherent cells with greater than 70% efficiency.

You do not currently have access to this content.