Objectives: Current antiretroviral therapy can suppress HIV replication, increase CD4 count and result in increased lifespan. However, it cannot eradicate the virus due to the presence of latent provirus in cellular reservoirs, such as resting CD4+ T cells. Using combination latency-reversing agents to shock the virus out of latency for elimination through immune clearance or viral cytopathic effect is one of the most promising strategies for HIV eradication. Specifically, recent evidence shows that isoform-selective histone deacetylase inhibitors may be more effective than their non-selective counterparts. Therefore, identification and characterisation of new isoform-selective compounds are of prime importance. Here, we sought to determine the ability of two new isoform-targeted hydroxamic acid derivatives to reactivate HIV from latency. Methods: We used cell lines and infected primary resting CD4+ T cells. These were treated with these compounds with HIV reactivation measured using fluorescence-activated cell sorting, Western blots and luciferase luminescence. Isoform selectivity and acetylation of the HIV promoter were measured by Western blotting and chromatic immunoprecipitation. Results and conclusions: The two new hydroxamic acid derivatives, MC2625 and MC1742, potently reactivate HIV from latency. These compounds are isoform-selective histone deacetylate inhibitors that increase the levels of histone acetylation at the HIV promoter. In addition, they synergise effectively with the protein kinase Cmodulators bryostatin-1 and INDY, an inhibitor of the dual-specificity tyrosine phosphorylation regulated kinase 1A. We conclude that the combinations of new hydroxamic acid derivatives and bryostatin-1 or INDY could be a new tool for HIV reactivation in the cure efforts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-91
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Virus Eradication
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2019


  • HIV
  • Histone deacetylase inhibitors
  • Isoform-targeted
  • Latency


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