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PLoS Pathog ; 17(5): e1009519, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1232468


SARS-CoV-2 is the novel coronavirus that is the causative agent of COVID-19, a sometimes-lethal respiratory infection responsible for a world-wide pandemic. The envelope (E) protein, one of four structural proteins encoded in the viral genome, is a 75-residue integral membrane protein whose transmembrane domain exhibits ion channel activity and whose cytoplasmic domain participates in protein-protein interactions. These activities contribute to several aspects of the viral replication-cycle, including virion assembly, budding, release, and pathogenesis. Here, we describe the structure and dynamics of full-length SARS-CoV-2 E protein in hexadecylphosphocholine micelles by NMR spectroscopy. We also characterized its interactions with four putative ion channel inhibitors. The chemical shift index and dipolar wave plots establish that E protein consists of a long transmembrane helix (residues 8-43) and a short cytoplasmic helix (residues 53-60) connected by a complex linker that exhibits some internal mobility. The conformations of the N-terminal transmembrane domain and the C-terminal cytoplasmic domain are unaffected by truncation from the intact protein. The chemical shift perturbations of E protein spectra induced by the addition of the inhibitors demonstrate that the N-terminal region (residues 6-18) is the principal binding site. The binding affinity of the inhibitors to E protein in micelles correlates with their antiviral potency in Vero E6 cells: HMA ≈ EIPA > DMA >> Amiloride, suggesting that bulky hydrophobic groups in the 5' position of the amiloride pyrazine ring play essential roles in binding to E protein and in antiviral activity. An N15A mutation increased the production of virus-like particles, induced significant chemical shift changes from residues in the inhibitor binding site, and abolished HMA binding, suggesting that Asn15 plays a key role in maintaining the protein conformation near the binding site. These studies provide the foundation for complete structure determination of E protein and for structure-based drug discovery targeting this protein.

Amiloride/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Amiloride/pharmacokinetics , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Binding Sites/drug effects , COVID-19/virology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Humans , Ion Channels/metabolism , Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Biomolecular , Protein Binding/drug effects , Protein Conformation/drug effects , Protein Domains , Vero Cells , Virus Assembly/drug effects
Mol Cell ; 81(12): 2656-2668.e8, 2021 06 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1179919


A deficient interferon (IFN) response to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection has been implicated as a determinant of severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). To identify the molecular effectors that govern IFN control of SARS-CoV-2 infection, we conducted a large-scale gain-of-function analysis that evaluated the impact of human IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs) on viral replication. A limited subset of ISGs were found to control viral infection, including endosomal factors inhibiting viral entry, RNA binding proteins suppressing viral RNA synthesis, and a highly enriched cluster of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)/Golgi-resident ISGs inhibiting viral assembly/egress. These included broad-acting antiviral ISGs and eight ISGs that specifically inhibited SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-1 replication. Among the broad-acting ISGs was BST2/tetherin, which impeded viral release and is antagonized by SARS-CoV-2 Orf7a protein. Overall, these data illuminate a set of ISGs that underlie innate immune control of SARS-CoV-2/SARS-CoV-1 infection, which will facilitate the understanding of host determinants that impact disease severity and offer potential therapeutic strategies for COVID-19.

Antigens, CD/genetics , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Interferon Regulatory Factors/genetics , Interferon Type I/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Animals , Antigens, CD/chemistry , Antigens, CD/immunology , Binding Sites , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Endoplasmic Reticulum/genetics , Endoplasmic Reticulum/immunology , Endoplasmic Reticulum/virology , GPI-Linked Proteins/chemistry , GPI-Linked Proteins/genetics , GPI-Linked Proteins/immunology , Gene Expression Regulation , Golgi Apparatus/genetics , Golgi Apparatus/immunology , Golgi Apparatus/virology , HEK293 Cells , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Interferon Regulatory Factors/classification , Interferon Regulatory Factors/immunology , Interferon Type I/immunology , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Signal Transduction , Vero Cells , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/immunology , Virus Internalization , Virus Release/genetics , Virus Release/immunology , Virus Replication/genetics , Virus Replication/immunology