AZIDOTHYMIDINE (AZT) 2110/11 AZT is a drug for treating patients with AIDS. It works by targeting the reverse transcriptase of HIV, and thereby, the DNA synthesis phase ofret rovira I replication. Specifically, AZT functions as a chain terminator in the DNA synthesis ofretroviral replication. ( , ( , ( -r o o-r ~. D 0 -,. (J --I " ~. (J 11 .~ I I T ~ f - r o -O-CrQ-' r C 6-f 6 -r -0 1/ (i () Drl 11 o o o N 1-1 11 Normal thymidine triphosphate AZT N+ (actually, deoxythymidine 5'-triphophate) 1\ N-The 3' OH ofthe normal thymidine triphosphate is critical to DNA synthesis, because this hydroxyl group is where new nucleotides will be added to a growing DNA chain. In contrast, AZT lacks this 3' OH group, which instead has been replaced by a nitrogenous group. Thus, once AZT is incorporated into a growing DNA chain, then further extension ofthis chain will be impossible, thereby blocking the successful replication ofret rovira I DNA and thereby disrupting its life cycle. .
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