Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a globally prevalent viral infection with limited
treatment options which hospitalizes millions each year. Treatment options have been
limited to palivizumab, a monoclonal antibody, approved for prophylaxis in high-risk
infants and ribavirin with very limited efficacy and significant safety concerns.
This Perspective surveys the range of direct acting antiviral agents (DAAs) that target
key steps in the viral life cycle. A number of approaches to DAAs have produced landmark
clinical studies over the past few years, notably in fusion and nucleoside inhibitors,
and an update of the clinical status of these compounds is provided. Non-nucleoside
inhibitors of replication are reviewed in addition to inhibitors of other mechanisms,
notably the RSV N and G proteins. This article will provide an informative perspective
of the current status of drug discovery targeted at providing an effective therapy
for RSV infection.