Aciclovir, also known as acyclovir and acycloguanosine, is an antiviral medication. It is primarily used for the treatment of herpes simplex virus infections, chickenpox, and shingles. Other uses include prevention of cytomegalovirus infections following transplant and infections due to Epstein-Barr virus. It is available by mouth and intravenously. Aciclovir is converted by viral thymidine kinase to aciclovir monophosphate, which is then converted by host cell kinases to aciclovir triphosphate (ACV-TP). ACV-TP, in turn, competitively inhibits and inactivates HSV-specified DNA polymerases preventing further viral DNA synthesis without affecting the normal cellular processes.
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