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Advanced Therapeutics ; 4(7):2170016, 2021.
Article in English | Wiley | ID: covidwho-1323847


SARS-CoV-2 infects human cells by binding its spike protein to the human ACE2 receptor. Using a peptide biopanning strategy, the authors have discovered small anti-ACE2 peptides that can effectively block the SARS-CoV-2/ACE2 interaction. The anti-ACE2 peptides can be potentially used as prophylactic or therapeutic agents for SARS-CoV-2 and other ACE2-mediated viruses. This is reported by Kun Cheng and co-workers in article number 2100087.

Adv Ther (Weinh) ; 4(7): 2100087, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1201415


COVID-19 is caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which infects host cells by binding its viral spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) to the angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) on host cells. Blocking the SARS-CoV-2-RBD/ACE2 interaction is, therefore, a potential strategy to inhibit viral infections. Using a novel biopanning strategy, a small anti-ACE2 peptide is discovered, which shows high affinity and specificity to human ACE2. It blocks not only the SARS-CoV-2-RBD/ACE2 interaction but also the SARS-CoV-1-RBD/ACE2 interaction. Moreover, it inhibits SARS-CoV-2 infection in Vero-E6 cells. The peptide shows negligible cytotoxicity in Vero-E6 cells and Huh7 cells. In vivo short-term lung toxicity study also demonstrates a good safety of the peptide after intratracheal administration. The anti-ACE2 peptide can be potentially used as a prophylactic or therapeutic agent for SARS-CoV-2 or other ACE2-mediated viruses. The strategy used in this study also provides a fast-track platform to discover other antiviral peptides, which will prepare the world for future pandemics.