DS003 is a promising new ARV that offers multiple options for single or combination ARV microbicide products.
How does DS003 work?
DS003 is a potent entry inhibitor that binds to a protein on HIV-1’s outer membrane called gp120. When DS003 attaches to the gp120 protein, it prevents HIV-1 from entering uninfected cells.
DS003 is an important microbicide candidate because it:
- acts early in the HIV life cycle, potentially increasing the chances of protection
- targets the virus itself rather than the host cell, reducing the chance that the user will experience unwanted side effects
- uses a mechanism of action that has not yet been employed in HIV treatment or prevention, which may increase the chance that it will be active against drug-resistant HIV
What is DS003’s clinical history?
IPM is developing DS003 as a microbicide through a 2005 royalty-free worldwide license from Bristol-Myers Squibb. DS003 has not been tested in humans but similar compounds with the same mechanism of action are currently in clinical trials for HIV treatment at Bristol-Myers Squibb.
In what stage of development is DS003, and what forms will it take as a microbicide?
Following a number of preclinical studies to establish the safety profile of DS003, IPM initiated the first Phase I trial of DS003 in 2015. The trial, known as IPM 042, is evaluating the safety and tolerability of DS003 in a vaginal tablet formulation. Results from the trial will inform the development future DS003-based products.
IPM is also developing a DS003 vaginal ring that will combine DS003 with ARVs that have different mechanisms of action such as dapivirine. Combination products using multiple ARVs that attack the virus at different stages of the HIV life cycle may offer greater protection than using a single ARV alone.
Where can I get more information?
For a bibliography of scientific papers and articles on IPM-supported research on DS003, visit our Publications & Media page.