LEONARD LESSIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LEONARD LESSIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Nevirapine. Computer artwork of the anti-HIV drug nevirapine (viramune, yellow) in the active site of the enzyme reverse transcriptase (RT, green ribbon). HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) causes AIDS (aquired immune deficiency syndrome). It is an RNA (ribonucleic acid) retrovirus, and uses RT to produce DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) in order to reproduce. The drug nevirapine stops RT from working by blocking the active site (as seen here), greatly reducing the reproductive capabilities of HIV. It is used in conjunction with other anti-HIV drugs (such as zidovudine) as the virus becomes resistant to it on its own. Treatment should be stopped if a rash develops.
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