Affiliation: Professor of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicina Pubblica e Sicurezza Sociale, Section of Infectious Diseases, University of Naples - Federico II, Naples, Italy.
Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (tenofovir DF) is the generic name of the chemical compound 9- [R- (2[[bis]]isopropoxycarbonyl) oxy]methoxy]phosphonyl]methoxy]propyl] adenine fumarate (1:1), the prodrug of tenofovir, the first nucleotide analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitor approved in October 2001 by the Food and Drugs Administration in USA and then, in February 2002, by the European Medicines Evaluation Agency in Europe for the treatment of HIV infection. In a short time it has become one of the most widely prescribed agents in HAART regimens both in naive and experienced patients, and is one of the most frequently used antiretroviral drug in ongoing clinical trials for the treatment but also for the prevention of HIV infection. Why has it gained a so important role in the management of HIV infection? This brief report emphasizes the key aspects of tenofovir, concerning its pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties, and its therapeutic efficacy and safety.