Lamivudine/zidovudine (INNs, trade name Combivir) is a pharmaceutical treatment for HIV infection. It is a fixed dose combination of two antiretroviral drugs, lamivudine (also called 3TC, with the brand name Epivir) and zidovudine (also called AZT, with the brand name Retrovir). The drug is a part of the class of medicines called Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NRTIs). Combining of the two drugs has a stronger and more sustained effect than using either drug alone, and assists in reducing pill burden and in aiding compliance with the antiretroviral drug therapy.
Both lamivudine and zidovudine are reverse transcriptase inhibitors, which block the action of an enzyme, reverse transcriptase, that the virus requires for reproduction. It reduces the viral load in the body and raises CD4 cell count.
It was approved for use in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration on September 26, 1997, making it the thirteenth approved antiretroviral. It is marketed by ViiV Healthcare.
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