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1.
Front Immunol ; 13: 820336, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1933641

ABSTRACT

The continuous spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) around the world has raised unprecedented challenges to the human society. Antibodies and nanobodies possessing neutralization activity represent promising drug candidates. In this study, we report the identification and characterization of a potent SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing nanobody that targets the viral spike receptor-binding domain (S-RBD). The nanobody, termed as Nb-007, engages SARS-CoV-2 S-RBD with the two-digit picomolar binding affinity and shows outstanding virus entry-inhibition activity. The complex structure of Nb-007 bound to SARS-CoV-2 S-RBD reveals an epitope that is partially overlapping with the binding site for the human receptor of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). The nanobody therefore exerts neutralization by competing with ACE2 for S-RBD binding, which is further ascertained by our in-vitro biochemical analyses. Finally, we also show that Nb-007 reserves promising, though compromised, neutralization activity against the currently-circulating Delta variant and that fusion of the nanobody with Fc dramatically increases its entry-inhibition capacity. Taken together, these data have paved the way of developing Nb-007 as a drug-reserve for potential treatment of SARS-CoV-2 related diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
2.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 11(1): 1920-1935, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1908682

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and related sarbecoviruses enter host cells by receptor-recognition and membrane-fusion. An indispensable step in fusion is the formation of 6-helix bundle by viral spike heptad repeats 1 and 2 (HR1 and HR2). Here, we report the construction of 5-helix bundle (5HB) proteins for virus infection inhibition. The optimal construct inhibits SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus entry with sub-micromolar IC50. Unlike HR2-based peptides that cannot bind spike in the pre-fusion conformation, 5HB features with the capability of binding to pre-fusion spike. Furthermore, 5HB binds viral HR2 at both serological- and endosomal-pH, highlighting its entry-inhibition capacity when SARS-CoV-2 enters via either cell membrane fusion or endosomal route. Finally, we show that 5HB could neutralize S-mediated entry of the predominant SARS-CoV-2 variants and a wide spectrum of sarbecoviruses. These data provide proof-of-concept evidence that 5HB might be developed for the prevention and treatment of SARS-CoV-2 and other emerging sarbecovirus infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Virus Internalization
3.
Cell Mol Immunol ; 19(5): 577-587, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1830043

ABSTRACT

Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) can capture and kill viruses, such as influenza viruses, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), thus contributing to host defense. Contrary to our expectation, we show here that the histones released by NETosis enhance the infectivity of SARS-CoV-2, as found by using live SARS-CoV-2 and two pseudovirus systems as well as a mouse model. The histone H3 or H4 selectively binds to subunit 2 of the spike (S) protein, as shown by a biochemical binding assay, surface plasmon resonance and binding energy calculation as well as the construction of a mutant S protein by replacing four acidic amino acids. Sialic acid on the host cell surface is the key molecule to which histones bridge subunit 2 of the S protein. Moreover, histones enhance cell-cell fusion. Finally, treatment with an inhibitor of NETosis, histone H3 or H4, or sialic acid notably affected the levels of sgRNA copies and the number of apoptotic cells in a mouse model. These findings suggest that SARS-CoV-2 could hijack histones from neutrophil NETosis to promote its host cell attachment and entry process and may be important in exploring pathogenesis and possible strategies to develop new effective therapies for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Histones , Mice , N-Acetylneuraminic Acid , Protein Subunits/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Virus Internalization
4.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 49(9): 5382-5392, 2021 05 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387965

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 infection has posed unprecedented threat to global public health. The virus-encoded non-structural protein 14 (nsp14) is a bi-functional enzyme consisting of an exoribonuclease (ExoN) domain and a methyltransferase (MTase) domain and plays a pivotal role in viral replication. Here, we report the structure of SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN domain bound to its co-factor nsp10 and show that, compared to the SARS-CoV nsp10/nsp14-full-length complex, SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN retains an integral exoribonuclease fold and preserves an active configuration in the catalytic center. Analysis of the nsp10/nsp14-ExoN interface reveals a footprint in nsp10 extensively overlapping with that observed in the nsp10/nsp16 structure. A marked difference in the co-factor when engaging nsp14 and nsp16 lies in helix-α1', which is further experimentally ascertained to be involved in nsp14-binding but not in nsp16-engagement. Finally, we also show that nsp10/nsp14-ExoN is enzymatically active despite the absence of nsp14-MTase domain. These data demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 nsp10/nsp14-ExoN functions as an exoribonuclease with both structural and functional integrity.


Subject(s)
Biocatalysis , Exoribonucleases/chemistry , Exoribonucleases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Binding Sites , Crystallography, X-Ray , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Guanine , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/deficiency , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Protein Domains/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
5.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 49(9): 5382-5392, 2021 05 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217861

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 infection has posed unprecedented threat to global public health. The virus-encoded non-structural protein 14 (nsp14) is a bi-functional enzyme consisting of an exoribonuclease (ExoN) domain and a methyltransferase (MTase) domain and plays a pivotal role in viral replication. Here, we report the structure of SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN domain bound to its co-factor nsp10 and show that, compared to the SARS-CoV nsp10/nsp14-full-length complex, SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN retains an integral exoribonuclease fold and preserves an active configuration in the catalytic center. Analysis of the nsp10/nsp14-ExoN interface reveals a footprint in nsp10 extensively overlapping with that observed in the nsp10/nsp16 structure. A marked difference in the co-factor when engaging nsp14 and nsp16 lies in helix-α1', which is further experimentally ascertained to be involved in nsp14-binding but not in nsp16-engagement. Finally, we also show that nsp10/nsp14-ExoN is enzymatically active despite the absence of nsp14-MTase domain. These data demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 nsp10/nsp14-ExoN functions as an exoribonuclease with both structural and functional integrity.


Subject(s)
Biocatalysis , Exoribonucleases/chemistry , Exoribonucleases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Binding Sites , Crystallography, X-Ray , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Guanine , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/deficiency , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Protein Domains/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
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