A method for identification of Anti-HIV human miRNA mimics and miRNA inhibitors and anti-HIV pharmaceutical compounds

  • CSIR
  • From South Africa
  • Responsive
  • Innovative Products and Technologies

Summary of the technology

A novel approach for detecting new anti-HIV targets that modulate HIV infection.



Human microRNA mimics and inhibitors that enhance and suppress HIV replication

Technology Field

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

Business Opportunity

Investment for further technology development and conduct relevant trials

Technology Description

The present invention relates to methods for the identification of anti-HIV miRNAs and anti-HIV pharmaceutical compounds using high-throughput screening methods, comprising: transfecting reporter cells with a panel of miRNAs, infecting the reporter cells with HIV, screening the cells to identify miRNAs that modulate HIV infection and identifying the specific pathways, nucleic acids and/or polypeptides that are targeted by the miRNAs. The invention further provides for the identification and screening of anti-HIV pharmaceutical compounds having known activity against the specific pathways, nucleic acids and/or polypeptides that are targeted by the miRNAs for efficacy in the treatment of HIV. The invention also provides for the use of miRNA mimics, miRNA inhibitors and pharmaceutical compounds (including oncology drugs and kinase inhibitors) in the treatment and/or prevention of HIV infection.

Benefits & Advantages

The human protein targets identified in our microRNA-based screen provide a validated set of novel human factors that can inhibit HIV replication. By targeting these same human proteins with pharmaceutical compounds that have already successfully passed toxicity testing, we could identify novel anti-HIV therapeutics while re-purposing pharmaceutical compounds and thus greatly reduce the cost and time involved in such studies.


Jeroleen Naidoo, DR Musa Mhlanga, Rethabile Khutlang, Dr Sam Barichievy, Luis P.Coelho

Related Keywords

  • Cellular and Molecular Biology Technology
  • Protein Engineering
  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • compounds

About CSIR

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, commonly known as the CSIR, is a world-class African research and development organisation established through an Act of Parliament in 1945. The CSIR undertakes directed, multidisciplinary research and technological innovation that contributes to the improved quality of life of South Africans.
The CSIR’s shareholder is the South African Parliament, held in proxy by the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation.

CSIR vision
We are accelerators of socio-economic prosperity in South Africa through leading innovation.

CSIR mission
Collaboratively innovating and localising technologies while providing knowledge solutions for the inclusive and sustainable advancement of industry and society.

CSIR values
CSIR values statement:
Our beliefs, principles and the impact we wish to make to improve the quality of life of South Africans are EPIC. Team CSIR pursues Excellence, celebrates People, personifies Integrity, and welcomes Collaboration.

Our mandate
“The objects of the CSIR are, through directed and particularly multi-disciplinary research and technological innovation, to foster, in the national interest and in fields which in its opinion should receive preference, industrial and scientific development, either by itself or in co-operation with principals from the private or public sectors, and thereby to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of the people of the Republic, and to perform any other functions that may be assigned to the CSIR by or under this Act.”
(Scientific Research Council Act 46 of 1988, amended by Act 71 of 1990)


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