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1.
Cell Rep ; 39(5): 110770, 2022 05 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1859379

ABSTRACT

The emergence of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant is dominant in many countries worldwide. The high number of spike mutations is responsible for the broad immune evasion from existing vaccines and antibody drugs. To understand this, we first present the cryo-electron microscopy structure of ACE2-bound SARS-CoV-2 Omicron spike. Comparison to previous spike antibody structures explains how Omicron escapes these therapeutics. Secondly, we report structures of Omicron, Delta, and wild-type spikes bound to a patient-derived Fab antibody fragment (510A5), which provides direct evidence where antibody binding is greatly attenuated by the Omicron mutations, freeing spike to bind ACE2. Together with biochemical binding and 510A5 neutralization assays, our work establishes principles of binding required for neutralization and clearly illustrates how the mutations lead to antibody evasion yet retain strong ACE2 interactions. Structural information on spike with both bound and unbound antibodies collectively elucidates potential strategies for generation of therapeutic antibodies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Immunoglobulin Fab Fragments , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-336803

ABSTRACT

Neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) can prevent and treat infections caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). However, continuously emerging variants, such as Omicron, have significantly reduced the potency of most known NAbs. The selection of NAbs with broad neutralizing activities and the identification of conserved critical epitopes are still urgently needed. Here, we identified an extremely potent antibody (55A8) by single B-cell sorting from convalescent SARS-CoV-2-infected patients that recognized the receptor-binding domain (RBD) in the SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein. 55A8 could bind to wild-type SARS-CoV-2, Omicron BA.1 and Omicron BA.2 simultaneously with 58G6, a NAb previously identified by our group. Importantly, an antibody cocktail containing 55A8 and 58G6 (2-cocktail) showed synergetic neutralizing activity with a half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC 50 ) in the picomolar range in vitro and prophylactic efficacy in hamsters challenged with Omicron (BA.1) through intranasal delivery at an extraordinarily low dosage (25 μg of each antibody daily) at 3 days post-infection. Structural analysis by cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) revealed that 55A8 is a Class III NAb that recognizes a highly conserved epitope. It could block angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) binding to the RBD in the S protein trimer via steric hindrance. The epitopes in the RBD recognized by 55A8 and 58G6 were found to be different and complementary, which could explain the synergetic mechanism of these two NAbs. Our findings not only provide a potential antibody cocktail for clinical use against infection with current SARS-CoV-2 strains and future variants but also identify critical epitope information for the development of better antiviral agents.

3.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-313429

ABSTRACT

Accumulating mutations on SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) protein may increase the possibility of immune escape, challenging the present COVID-19 prophylaxis and clinical interventions. Here, in a panel of receptor binding domain (S-RBD) specific monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) with high neutralizing potency against authentic SARS-CoV-2, at least 6 of them were found to efficiently block the pseudovirus of 501Y.V2, a highly transmissible SARS-CoV-2 variant with escape mutations. The top 3 neutralizing Abs (13G9, 58G6 and 510A5) exhibited comparative ultrapotency as those being actively pursued for clinical development. Interestingly, the antigenic sites for the majority of our neutralizing Abs overlapped with a single epitope (13G9e) on S-RBD. Further, the 3-dimensional structures of 2 ultrapotent neutralizing Abs 13G9 or 58G6 in complex with SARS-CoV-2 S trimer demonstrated that both Abs bound to a steric region within S 472–490 . Moreover, a specific linear region (S 450–457 ) was identified as an additional target for 58G6. Importantly, our cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) analysis revealed a unique phenomenon that the S-RBDs interacting with the fragments of antigen binding (Fabs) of 13G9 or 58G6 encoded by the IGHV1-58 and the IGKV3-20 gene segments were universally in the ‘up’ conformation in all observed particles. The potent neutralizing Abs presented in the current study may be promising candidates to fulfill the urgent needs for the current pandemic of SARS-CoV-2, and may of fundamental value for the next-generation vaccine development.

4.
Front Mol Biosci ; 8: 813248, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662600

ABSTRACT

The accessory protein Orf6 is uniquely expressed in sarbecoviruses including severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) which is an ongoing pandemic. SARS-CoV-2 Orf6 antagonizes host interferon signaling by inhibition of mRNA nuclear export through its interactions with the ribonucleic acid export 1 (Rae1)-nucleoporin 98 (Nup98) complex. Here, we confirmed the direct tight binding of Orf6 to the Rae1-Nup98 complex, which competitively inhibits RNA binding. We determined the crystal structures of both SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-1 Orf6 C-termini in complex with the Rae1-Nup98 heterodimer. In each structure, SARS-CoV Orf6 occupies the same potential mRNA-binding groove of the Rae1-Nup98 complex, comparable to the previously reported structures of other viral proteins complexed with Rae1-Nup98, indicating that the Rae1-Nup98 complex is a common target for different viruses to impair the nuclear export pathway. Structural analysis and biochemical studies highlight the critical role of the highly conserved methionine (M58) of SARS-CoVs Orf6. Altogether our data unravel a mechanistic understanding of SARS-CoVs Orf6 targeting the mRNA-binding site of the Rae1-Nup98 complex to compete with the nuclear export of host mRNA, which further emphasizes that Orf6 is a critical virulence factor of SARS-CoVs.

5.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 6304, 2021 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1500462

ABSTRACT

Accumulating mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) protein can increase the possibility of immune escape, challenging the present COVID-19 prophylaxis and clinical interventions. Here, 3 receptor binding domain (RBD) specific monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), 58G6, 510A5 and 13G9, with high neutralizing potency blocking authentic SARS-CoV-2 virus display remarkable efficacy against authentic B.1.351 virus. Surprisingly, structural analysis has revealed that 58G6 and 13G9 both recognize the steric region S470-495 on the RBD, overlapping the E484K mutation presented in B.1.351. Also, 58G6 directly binds to another region S450-458 in the RBD. Significantly, 58G6 and 510A5 both demonstrate prophylactic efficacy against authentic SARS-CoV-2 and B.1.351 viruses in the transgenic mice expressing human ACE2 (hACE2), protecting weight loss and reducing virus loads. Together, we have evidenced 2 potent neutralizing Abs with unique mechanism targeting authentic SARS-CoV-2 mutants, which can be promising candidates to fulfill the urgent needs for the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Epitopes , Humans , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Load/drug effects , Weight Loss/drug effects
6.
Protein Cell ; 12(11): 877-888, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1188202

ABSTRACT

A new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) has been identified as the etiologic agent for the COVID-19 outbreak. Currently, effective treatment options remain very limited for this disease; therefore, there is an urgent need to identify new anti-COVID-19 agents. In this study, we screened over 6,000 compounds that included approved drugs, drug candidates in clinical trials, and pharmacologically active compounds to identify leads that target the SARS-CoV-2 papain-like protease (PLpro). Together with main protease (Mpro), PLpro is responsible for processing the viral replicase polyprotein into functional units. Therefore, it is an attractive target for antiviral drug development. Here we discovered four compounds, YM155, cryptotanshinone, tanshinone I and GRL0617 that inhibit SARS-CoV-2 PLpro with IC50 values ranging from 1.39 to 5.63 µmol/L. These compounds also exhibit strong antiviral activities in cell-based assays. YM155, an anticancer drug candidate in clinical trials, has the most potent antiviral activity with an EC50 value of 170 nmol/L. In addition, we have determined the crystal structures of this enzyme and its complex with YM155, revealing a unique binding mode. YM155 simultaneously targets three "hot" spots on PLpro, including the substrate-binding pocket, the interferon stimulating gene product 15 (ISG15) binding site and zinc finger motif. Our results demonstrate the efficacy of this screening and repurposing strategy, which has led to the discovery of new drug leads with clinical potential for COVID-19 treatments.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/genetics , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Crystallography, X-Ray , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Imidazoles/chemistry , Imidazoles/metabolism , Imidazoles/therapeutic use , Inhibitory Concentration 50 , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutagenesis, Site-Directed , Naphthoquinones/chemistry , Naphthoquinones/metabolism , Naphthoquinones/therapeutic use , Protease Inhibitors/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Protein Structure, Tertiary , Recombinant Proteins/biosynthesis , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
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