Saquinavir (Invirase)

Published January 25, 2001; Updated March 19, 2011
Susa Coffey, MD
http://hivinsite.ucsf.edu/InSite?page=ar-03-01
Selected Reference
9. Zolopa  AR, Shafer  RW, Warford  A, Montoya  JG, Hsu  P, Katzenstein  D, Merigan  TC, Efron  B.
HIV-1 genotypic resistance patterns predict response to saquinavir-ritonavir therapy in patients in whom previous protease inhibitor therapy had failed. Ann Intern Med. 1999 Dec;131(11):813-21
[PubMed ID: 10610625]
Abstract:
BACKGROUND: Tests for resistance to HIV drugs are available for clinical use; however, their predictive value has not been fully assessed. OBJECTIVES: To determine HIV-1 genotypic predictors of a virologic response to saquinavir-ritonavir therapy in patients in whom at least one previous protease inhibitor-containing regimen had failed and to compare the predictive value of baseline genotype with that of standard clinical evaluation. DESIGN: Retrospective clinical cohort study. SETTING: University-based HIV clinic. PATIENTS: 54 HIV-1-infected adults treated with saquinavir-ritonavir who had experienced virologic failure while receiving a protease inhibitor-containing regimen for at least 3 months. MEASUREMENTS: HIV-1 reverse transcriptase and protease gene sequences, CD4 cell counts, clinical characteristics, detailed antiretroviral treatment history, and plasma HIV-1 RNA levels at baseline and at three follow-up time points (median, 4, 12, and 26 weeks). Virologic failure was defined as a plasma HIV RNA level greater than 1000 copies/mL. RESULTS: In 22 patients (41%), a plasma HIV-1 RNA level less than 500 copies/mL was achieved by week 12; in 15 patients (28%), this response was maintained through week 26. Clinical characteristics predicting a poorer response included a diagnosis of AIDS, lower CD4 cell count, and higher plasma HIV RNA level (P<0.03). Number of previous nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, previous protease inhibitor therapy, and duration of previous protease inhibitor therapy were predictors of poorer response (P<0.01). Multivariate regression models revealed that protease mutations present at the initiation of saquinavir-ritonavir therapy were the strongest predictors of virologic response. A model of clinical features explained up to 45% of the variation in virologic outcomes by week 12, whereas the explained variance was 71% when genotypic predictors were included. CONCLUSIONS: In patients in whom protease inhibitor-containing antiretroviral therapy fails, HIV-1 genotype is predictive of virologic response to subsequent therapy. This predictive capacity adds to that of standard clinical evaluation.