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Nat Commun ; 13(1): 1638, 2022 03 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1764180


COVID-19 pathogen SARS-CoV-2 has infected hundreds of millions and caused over 5 million deaths to date. Although multiple vaccines are available, breakthrough infections occur especially by emerging variants. Effective therapeutic options such as monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are still critical. Here, we report the development, cryo-EM structures, and functional analyses of mAbs that potently neutralize SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern. By high-throughput single cell sequencing of B cells from spike receptor binding domain (RBD) immunized animals, we identify two highly potent SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing mAb clones that have single-digit nanomolar affinity and low-picomolar avidity, and generate a bispecific antibody. Lead antibodies show strong inhibitory activity against historical SARS-CoV-2 and several emerging variants of concern. We solve several cryo-EM structures at ~3 Å resolution of these neutralizing antibodies in complex with prefusion spike trimer ectodomain, and reveal distinct epitopes, binding patterns, and conformations. The lead clones also show potent efficacy in vivo against authentic SARS-CoV-2 in both prophylactic and therapeutic settings. We also generate and characterize a humanized antibody to facilitate translation and drug development. The humanized clone also has strong potency against both the original virus and the B.1.617.2 Delta variant. These mAbs expand the repertoire of therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2 and emerging variants.

Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Bispecific/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
PLoS Pathog ; 17(6): e1009683, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1282318


COVID-19 is a global crisis of unimagined dimensions. Currently, Remedesivir is only fully licensed FDA therapeutic. A major target of the vaccine effort is the SARS-CoV-2 spike-hACE2 interaction, and assessment of efficacy relies on time consuming neutralization assay. Here, we developed a cell fusion assay based upon spike-hACE2 interaction. The system was tested by transient co-transfection of 293T cells, which demonstrated good correlation with standard spike pseudotyping for inhibition by sera and biologics. Then established stable cell lines were very well behaved and gave even better correlation with pseudotyping results, after a short, overnight co-incubation. Results with the stable cell fusion assay also correlated well with those of a live virus assay. In summary we have established a rapid, reliable, and reproducible cell fusion assay that will serve to complement the other neutralization assays currently in use, is easy to implement in most laboratories, and may serve as the basis for high throughput screens to identify inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 virus-cell binding and entry.

Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Biological Assay/methods , COVID-19/virology , Receptors, Coronavirus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/blood , Cell Fusion , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Receptors, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Transfection , Virus Attachment
Mol Cell ; 80(6): 1055-1066.e6, 2020 12 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1009762


The causative virus of the COVID-19 pandemic, SARS-CoV-2, uses its nonstructural protein 1 (Nsp1) to suppress cellular, but not viral, protein synthesis through yet unknown mechanisms. We show here that among all viral proteins, Nsp1 has the largest impact on host viability in the cells of human lung origin. Differential expression analysis of mRNA-seq data revealed that Nsp1 broadly alters the cellular transcriptome. Our cryo-EM structure of the Nsp1-40S ribosome complex shows that Nsp1 inhibits translation by plugging the mRNA entry channel of the 40S. We also determined the structure of the 48S preinitiation complex formed by Nsp1, 40S, and the cricket paralysis virus internal ribosome entry site (IRES) RNA, which shows that it is nonfunctional because of the incorrect position of the mRNA 3' region. Our results elucidate the mechanism of host translation inhibition by SARS-CoV-2 and advance understanding of the impacts from a major pathogenicity factor of SARS-CoV-2.

COVID-19/metabolism , Protein Biosynthesis , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/pathology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , Ribosome Subunits, Small, Eukaryotic/genetics , Ribosome Subunits, Small, Eukaryotic/metabolism , Ribosome Subunits, Small, Eukaryotic/ultrastructure , Ribosome Subunits, Small, Eukaryotic/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics