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Comput Biol Med ; 158: 106797, 2023 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2297728


Monkeypox (MPXV) is a globally growing public health concern with 80,328 active cases and 53 deaths have been reported. No specific vaccine or drug is available for the treatment of MPXV. Hence, the current study also employed structure-based drug designing, molecular simulation, and free energy calculation methods to identify potential hit molecules against the TMPK of MPXV, which is a replicatory protein that helps the virus to replicate its DNA and increase the number of DNAs in the host cell. The 3D structure of TMPK was modeled with AlphaFold and screening of multiple natural products libraries (4,71,470 compounds) identified TCM26463, TCM2079, and TCM29893 from traditional Chinese medicines database (TCM), SANC00240, SANC00984, and SANC00986 South African natural compounds database (SANCDB), NPC474409, NPC278434 and NPC158847 from NPASS (natural product activity and species source database) while CNP0404204, CNP0262936, and CNP0289137 were shortlisted from coconut database (collection of open natural products) as the best hits. These compounds interact with the key active site residues through hydrogen bonds, salt bridges, and pie-pie interactions. The structural dynamics and binding free energy results further revealed that these compounds possess stable dynamics with excellent binding free energy scores. Moreover, the dissociation constant (KD) and bioactivity analysis revealed stronger activity of these compounds exhibit stronger biological activity against MPXV and may inhibit it in in vitro conditions. All the results demonstrated that the designed novel compounds possess stronger inhibitory activity than the control complex (TPD-TMPK) from the vaccinia virus. The current study is the first to design small molecule inhibitors for the replication protein of MPXV which may help in controlling the current epidemic and also overcome the challenge of vaccine evasion.

Biological Products , Monkeypox , Humans , Monkeypox virus/genetics , Biological Products/pharmacology
Molecules ; 27(22)2022 Nov 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2110189


The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, also known as SARS-CoV-2, is the causative agent of the COVID-19 global pandemic. SARS-CoV-2 has a highly conserved non-structural protein 12 (NSP-12) involved in RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) activity. For the identification of potential inhibitors for NSP-12, computational approaches such as the identification of homologous proteins that have been previously targeted by FDA-approved antivirals can be employed. Herein, homologous proteins of NSP-12 were retrieved from Protein DataBank (PDB) and the evolutionary conserved sequence and structure similarity of the active site of the RdRp domain of NSP-12 was characterized. The identified homologous structures of NSP-12 belonged to four viral families: Coronaviridae, Flaviviridae, Picornaviridae, and Caliciviridae, and shared evolutionary conserved relationships. The multiple sequences and structural alignment of homologous structures showed highly conserved amino acid residues that were located at the active site of the RdRp domain of NSP-12. The conserved active site of the RdRp domain of NSP-12 was evaluated for binding affinity with the FDA-approved antivirals, i.e., Sofosbuvir and Dasabuvir in a molecular docking study. The molecular docking of Sofosbuvir and Dasabuvir with the active site that contains conserved motifs (motif A-G) of the RdRp domain of NSP-12 revealed significant binding affinity. Furthermore, MD simulation also inferred the potency of Sofosbuvir and Dasabuvir. In conclusion, targeting the active site of the RdRp domain of NSP-12 with Dasabuvir and Sofosbuvir might reduce viral replication and pathogenicity and could be further studied for the treatment of SARS-CoV-2.

COVID-19 Drug Treatment , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Drug Repositioning , Sofosbuvir , Molecular Docking Simulation , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use
Molecules ; 27(21)2022 Oct 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2090285


The emergence of immune-evading variants of SARS-CoV-2 further aggravated the ongoing pandemic. Despite the deployments of various vaccines, the acquired mutations are capable of escaping both natural and vaccine-induced immune responses. Therefore, further investigation is needed to design a decisive pharmacological treatment that could efficiently block the entry of this virus into cells. Hence, the current study used structure-based methods to target the RBD of the recombinant variant (Deltacron) of SARS-CoV-2, which was used as a model variant. From the virtual drug screenings of various databases, a total of four hits were identified as potential lead molecules. Key residues were blocked by these molecules with favorable structural dynamic features. The binding free energies further validated the potentials of these molecules. The TBE for MNP was calculated to be -32.86 ± 0.10 kcal/mol, for SANC00222 the TBE was -23.41 ± 0.15 kcal/mol, for Liriodenine the TBE was -34.29 ± 0.07 kcal/mol, while for Carviolin the TBE was calculated to be -27.67 ± 0.12 kcal/mol. Moreover, each complex demonstrated distinct internal motion and a free energy profile, indicating a different strategy for the interaction with and inhibition of the RBD. In conclusion, the current study demands further in vivo and in vitro validation for the possible usage of these compounds as potential drugs against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants.

COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Viral Vaccines , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Pandemics , Protein Binding , Molecular Docking Simulation