Structures Revealed

Webinar: Using cryo-EM for designing next-gen therapeutics against HIV

Today, HIV infects nearly 40 million people worldwide. The virus is responsible for ~2 million new infections per year and ~1 million deaths.

Like all retroviruses, HIV integrates a viral DNA copy of its RNA genome into host chromatin, thereby establishing a permanent and irreversible infection in the target cell. Integration depends on the obligate formation of a large oligomeric nucleoprotein complex containing the viral integrase enzyme assembled on viral DNA ends, commonly referred to as an intasome. Intasomes are also targeted by the latest generation of antiretrovirals, integrase strand transfer inhibitors (INSTIs).


Cryo-EM methods are beginning to shed light on the structures of HIV intasomes and how INSTIs bind, revealing how small changes in the integrase active site can have significant implications for drug binding. This work has implications for expanding effective treatments available for HIV-infected individuals.

In a recent webinar, Dr. Dmitry Lyumkis from the Salk Institute discussed how the virus’s ability to integrate its genome into host DNA is vulnerable to inhibition and how new technology is advancing high-resolution structural studies. He also discussed how cryo-EM structure-based drug design can help combat the global HIV epidemic.

If you missed the webinar, watch it on-demand now.

Learn more about Thermo Fisher Scientific's cryo-EM workflow solutions.

About your presenter

Dr. Dmitry Lyumkis
Assistant Professor Laboratory of Genetics
The Salk Institute for Biological Studies

After obtaining his undegraduate degree in Chemistry / Biochemistry from UCSD, Dmitry Lyumkis obtained his PhD in Biophysics from the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA, working under the supervision of Bridget Carragher and Clinton S. Potter. His interests lie in utilizing electron microscopy to gain insight into macromolecular assemblies, their structure, function, and dynamics, while at the same time pushing the technological limits of cryo-EM methodologies. He is currently assistant professor in the Laboratory of Genetics at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. Outside the lab, he is an avid outdoor enthusiast and is always looking for new places to explore.

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