Atazanavir (Reyataz)

Atazanavir (Reyataz, Zrivada) is an antiretroviral drug from the class known as protease inhibitors. Protease inhibitors block the activity of the HIV protease (or proteinase) enzyme that HIV uses to break up large viral proteins so that new HIV particles can be formed. Inhibiting this action slows HIV replication and delays damage to the immune system. For more information on how protease inhibitors work, see Protease inhibitors in the section Ways of attacking HIV.

Atazanavir was developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb, the makers of d4T (stavudine, Zerit) and ddI (didanosine, Videx / VidexEC). It was formerly identified as BM-232632.

In the European Union, atazanavir was approved for use in treatment-experienced patients in 2004, at a dose of 300mg, boosted with 100mg ritonavir (Norvir) once a day. It was approved for use in treatment-naive patients at the same dose in 2008.

In the United States, atazanavir was approved as an HIV treatment in 2003 without restrictions on its use. The licensed dosing is 400mg once daily for treatment-naive patients and 300mg plus 100 mg ritonavir once daily for treatment-experienced patients. It is recommended that this drug be taken with food. It has also been approved for use in children six years of age and older.