Drug-resistant herpes simplex virus in HIV infected patients

Margarita S. Lolis, Lenis González, Philip J. Cohen, Robert A. Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2) infection is a major source of morbidity in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients, since reactivations - whether symptomatic or asymptomatic - are associated with increased HIV viral load and viral shedding. Acyclovir, valacyclovir and famcyclovir are indicated for the treatment of HSV2 in HIV patients. This class of drugs has been shown to enhance survival in HIV-infected individuals. However, with the emergence of drug-resistant strains of HSV2, the rates of resistance among HIV patients are almost ten-fold those in immunocompetent individuals, comparing 0.6% to 6%. These HSV2 infections tend to be more severe and to recur. More ominously, disease progression of HIV is promoted by concurrent infection with HSV2. Intravenous foscarnet and cidofovir may be used for acyclovir-resistant HSV; however, resistance to these drugs has been documented. Newer therapies such as the toll-like receptor agonist imiquimod and immunomodulating dipeptides offer promise for the treatment of HSV2 in HIV-infected individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204-208
Number of pages5
JournalActa Dermatovenerologica Croatica
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases


  • HIV infection
  • HSV2 drug-resistance
  • HSV2 therapy
  • Herpes simplex virus type 2


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