Integrase is a protein produced by a virus that enables genetic material that is helpful to the virus, proviral DNA, to be integrated into the DNA of the infected cell.
HIV integrase is a 32 kDa protein produced from the C-terminal portion of the Pol gene product. The integrase protein contains three domains: an N-terminal HH-CC zinc finger domain believed to be partially responsible for multimerization, a central catalytic domain and an C-terminal DNA binding domain. Integrase is responsible for the integration of proviral DNA into the host genome, which is essential for HIV replication. Integrase, therefore, remains a promising potential target for new anti-HIV therapeutics.
See also: retrovirus