Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 13 de 13
Filter
1.
mBio ; : e0370521, 2022 Mar 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1714363

ABSTRACT

Combinations of direct-acting antivirals are needed to minimize drug resistance mutations and stably suppress replication of RNA viruses. Currently, there are limited therapeutic options against the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), and testing of a number of drug regimens has led to conflicting results. Here, we show that cobicistat, which is an FDA-approved drug booster that blocks the activity of the drug-metabolizing proteins cytochrome P450-3As (CYP3As) and P-glycoprotein (P-gp), inhibits SARS-CoV-2 replication. Two independent cell-to-cell membrane fusion assays showed that the antiviral effect of cobicistat is exerted through inhibition of spike protein-mediated membrane fusion. In line with this, incubation with low-micromolar concentrations of cobicistat decreased viral replication in three different cell lines including cells of lung and gut origin. When cobicistat was used in combination with remdesivir, a synergistic effect on the inhibition of viral replication was observed in cell lines and in a primary human colon organoid. This was consistent with the effects of cobicistat on two of its known targets, CYP3A4 and P-gp, the silencing of which boosted the in vitro antiviral activity of remdesivir in a cobicistat-like manner. When administered in vivo to Syrian hamsters at a high dose, cobicistat decreased viral load and mitigated clinical progression. These data highlight cobicistat as a therapeutic candidate for treating SARS-CoV-2 infection and as a potential building block of combination therapies for COVID-19. IMPORTANCE The lack of effective antiviral treatments against SARS-CoV-2 is a significant limitation in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Single-drug regimens have so far yielded limited results, indicating that combinations of antivirals might be required, as previously seen for other RNA viruses. Our work introduces the drug booster cobicistat, which is approved by the FDA and typically used to potentiate the effect of anti-HIV protease inhibitors, as a candidate inhibitor of SARS-CoV-2 replication. Beyond its direct activity as an antiviral, we show that cobicistat can enhance the effect of remdesivir, which was one of the first drugs proposed for treatment of SARS-CoV-2. Overall, the dual action of cobicistat as a direct antiviral and a drug booster can provide a new approach to design combination therapies and rescue the activity of compounds that are only partially effective in monotherapy.

2.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 45, 2022 01 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625575

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is a novel virus that has rapidly spread, causing a global pandemic. In the majority of infected patients, SARS-CoV-2 leads to mild disease; however, in a significant proportion of infections, individuals develop severe symptoms that can lead to long-lasting lung damage or death. These severe cases are often associated with high levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and low antiviral responses, which can cause systemic complications. Here, we have evaluated transcriptional and cytokine secretion profiles and detected a distinct upregulation of inflammatory cytokines in infected cell cultures and samples taken from infected patients. Building on these observations, we found a specific activation of NF-κB and a block of IRF3 nuclear translocation in SARS-CoV-2 infected cells. This NF-κB response was mediated by cGAS-STING activation and could be attenuated through several STING-targeting drugs. Our results show that SARS-CoV-2 directs a cGAS-STING mediated, NF-κB-driven inflammatory immune response in human epithelial cells that likely contributes to inflammatory responses seen in patients and could be therapeutically targeted to suppress severe disease symptoms.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Cytokine Release Syndrome , Inflammation Mediators/metabolism , Membrane Proteins/metabolism , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Nucleotidyltransferases/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Signal Transduction
3.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 7276, 2021 12 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1575708

ABSTRACT

Double membrane vesicles (DMVs) serve as replication organelles of plus-strand RNA viruses such as hepatitis C virus (HCV) and SARS-CoV-2. Viral DMVs are morphologically analogous to DMVs formed during autophagy, but lipids driving their biogenesis are largely unknown. Here we show that production of the lipid phosphatidic acid (PA) by acylglycerolphosphate acyltransferase (AGPAT) 1 and 2 in the ER is important for DMV biogenesis in viral replication and autophagy. Using DMVs in HCV-replicating cells as model, we found that AGPATs are recruited to and critically contribute to HCV and SARS-CoV-2 replication and proper DMV formation. An intracellular PA sensor accumulated at viral DMV formation sites, consistent with elevated levels of PA in fractions of purified DMVs analyzed by lipidomics. Apart from AGPATs, PA is generated by alternative pathways and their pharmacological inhibition also impaired HCV and SARS-CoV-2 replication as well as formation of autophagosome-like DMVs. These data identify PA as host cell lipid involved in proper replication organelle formation by HCV and SARS-CoV-2, two phylogenetically disparate viruses causing very different diseases, i.e. chronic liver disease and COVID-19, respectively. Host-targeting therapy aiming at PA synthesis pathways might be suitable to attenuate replication of these viruses.


Subject(s)
Hepacivirus/genetics , Phosphatidic Acids/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Virus Replication/physiology , 1-Acylglycerol-3-Phosphate O-Acyltransferase , Acyltransferases , Autophagosomes/metabolism , Autophagy , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Cell Survival , Dengue Virus , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Membrane Proteins , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Nonstructural Proteins , Viral Proteins , Zika Virus
4.
ACS Infect Dis ; 7(6): 1457-1468, 2021 06 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493012

ABSTRACT

Two proteases produced by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the main protease and papain-like protease, are essential for viral replication and have become the focus of drug development programs for treatment of COVID-19. We screened a highly focused library of compounds containing covalent warheads designed to target cysteine proteases to identify new lead scaffolds for both Mpro and PLpro proteases. These efforts identified a small number of hits for the Mpro protease and no viable hits for the PLpro protease. Of the Mpro hits identified as inhibitors of the purified recombinant protease, only two compounds inhibited viral infectivity in cellular infection assays. However, we observed a substantial drop in antiviral potency upon expression of TMPRSS2, a transmembrane serine protease that acts in an alternative viral entry pathway to the lysosomal cathepsins. This loss of potency is explained by the fact that our lead Mpro inhibitors are also potent inhibitors of host cell cysteine cathepsins. To determine if this is a general property of Mpro inhibitors, we evaluated several recently reported compounds and found that they are also effective inhibitors of purified human cathepsins L and B and showed similar loss in activity in cells expressing TMPRSS2. Our results highlight the challenges of targeting Mpro and PLpro proteases and demonstrate the need to carefully assess selectivity of SARS-CoV-2 protease inhibitors to prevent clinical advancement of compounds that function through inhibition of a redundant viral entry pathway.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Humans , Peptide Hydrolases , Protease Inhibitors
5.
Cell Host Microbe ; 28(6): 853-866.e5, 2020 12 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385263

ABSTRACT

Pathogenesis induced by SARS-CoV-2 is thought to result from both an inflammation-dominated cytokine response and virus-induced cell perturbation causing cell death. Here, we employ an integrative imaging analysis to determine morphological organelle alterations induced in SARS-CoV-2-infected human lung epithelial cells. We report 3D electron microscopy reconstructions of whole cells and subcellular compartments, revealing extensive fragmentation of the Golgi apparatus, alteration of the mitochondrial network and recruitment of peroxisomes to viral replication organelles formed by clusters of double-membrane vesicles (DMVs). These are tethered to the endoplasmic reticulum, providing insights into DMV biogenesis and spatial coordination of SARS-CoV-2 replication. Live cell imaging combined with an infection sensor reveals profound remodeling of cytoskeleton elements. Pharmacological inhibition of their dynamics suppresses SARS-CoV-2 replication. We thus report insights into virus-induced cytopathic effects and provide alongside a comprehensive publicly available repository of 3D datasets of SARS-CoV-2-infected cells for download and smooth online visualization.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Endoplasmic Reticulum/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Viral Replication Compartments/ultrastructure , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Death/genetics , Endoplasmic Reticulum/genetics , Endoplasmic Reticulum/virology , Humans , Microscopy, Electron , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Viral Replication Compartments/metabolism , Virus Replication/genetics
6.
Infection ; 50(2): 395-406, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1353740

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Rapid antigen-detecting tests (Ag-RDTs) for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can transform pandemic control. Thus far, sensitivity (≤ 85%) of lateral-flow assays has limited scale-up. Conceivably, microfluidic immunofluorescence Ag-RDTs could increase sensitivity for SARS-CoV-2 detection. METHODS: This multi-centre diagnostic accuracy study investigated performance of the microfluidic immunofluorescence LumiraDx™ assay, enrolling symptomatic and asymptomatic participants with suspected SARS-CoV-2 infection. Participants collected a supervised nasal mid-turbinate (NMT) self-swab for Ag-RDT testing, in addition to a professionally collected nasopharyngeal (NP) swab for routine testing with reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Results were compared to calculate sensitivity and specificity. Sub-analyses investigated the results by viral load, symptom presence and duration. An analytical study assessed exclusivity and limit-of-detection (LOD). In addition, we evaluated ease-of-use. RESULTS: The study was conducted between November 2nd 2020 and 4th of December 2020. 761 participants were enrolled, with 486 participants reporting symptoms on testing day. 120 out of 146 RT-PCR positive cases were detected positive by LumiraDx™, resulting in a sensitivity of 82.2% (95% CI 75.2-87.5%). Specificity was 99.3% (CI 98.3-99.7%). Sensitivity was increased in individuals with viral load ≥ 7 log10 SARS-CoV2 RNA copies/ml (93.8%; CI 86.2-97.3%). Testing against common respiratory commensals and pathogens showed no cross-reactivity and LOD was estimated to be 2-56 PFU/mL. The ease-of-use-assessment was favourable for lower throughput settings. CONCLUSION: The LumiraDx™ assay showed excellent analytical sensitivity, exclusivity and clinical specificity with good clinical sensitivity using supervised NMT self-sampling. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER AND REGISTRATION DATE: DRKS00021220 and 01.04.2020.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Pandemics , Point-of-Care Systems , RNA, Viral , Sensitivity and Specificity
7.
Nature ; 588(7838): 498-502, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1343462

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virions are surrounded by a lipid bilayer from which spike (S) protein trimers protrude1. Heavily glycosylated S trimers bind to the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 receptor and mediate entry of virions into target cells2-6. S exhibits extensive conformational flexibility: it modulates exposure of its receptor-binding site and subsequently undergoes complete structural rearrangement to drive fusion of viral and cellular membranes2,7,8. The structures and conformations of soluble, overexpressed, purified S proteins have been studied in detail using cryo-electron microscopy2,7,9-12, but the structure and distribution of S on the virion surface remain unknown. Here we applied cryo-electron microscopy and tomography to image intact SARS-CoV-2 virions and determine the high-resolution structure, conformational flexibility and distribution of S trimers in situ on the virion surface. These results reveal the conformations of S on the virion, and provide a basis from which to understand interactions between S and neutralizing antibodies during infection or vaccination.


Subject(s)
Cryoelectron Microscopy , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Virion/chemistry , Virion/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Cell Line, Tumor , Humans , Models, Molecular , Pliability , Protein Conformation , Protein Multimerization , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Virion/isolation & purification , Virion/metabolism
9.
Mol Cell ; 81(13): 2851-2867.e7, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1240514

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). SARS-CoV-2 relies on cellular RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) to replicate and spread, although which RBPs control its life cycle remains largely unknown. Here, we employ a multi-omic approach to identify systematically and comprehensively the cellular and viral RBPs that are involved in SARS-CoV-2 infection. We reveal that SARS-CoV-2 infection profoundly remodels the cellular RNA-bound proteome, which includes wide-ranging effects on RNA metabolic pathways, non-canonical RBPs, and antiviral factors. Moreover, we apply a new method to identify the proteins that directly interact with viral RNA, uncovering dozens of cellular RBPs and six viral proteins. Among them are several components of the tRNA ligase complex, which we show regulate SARS-CoV-2 infection. Furthermore, we discover that available drugs targeting host RBPs that interact with SARS-CoV-2 RNA inhibit infection. Collectively, our results uncover a new universe of host-virus interactions with potential for new antiviral therapies against COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Proteome/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , RNA-Binding Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication/physiology , A549 Cells , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Proteome/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA-Binding Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics
10.
J Virol ; 95(4)2021 01 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1117221

ABSTRACT

Positive-strand RNA viruses have been the etiological agents in several major disease outbreaks over the last few decades. Examples of this include flaviviruses, such as dengue virus and Zika virus, which cause millions of yearly infections around the globe, and coronaviruses, such as SARS-CoV-2, the source of the current pandemic. The severity of outbreaks caused by these viruses stresses the importance of research aimed at determining methods to limit virus spread and to curb disease severity. Such studies require molecular tools to decipher virus-host interactions and to develop effective treatments. Here, we describe the generation and characterization of a reporter system that can be used to visualize and identify cells infected with dengue virus or SARS-CoV-2. This system is based on viral protease activity that mediates cleavage and nuclear translocation of an engineered fluorescent protein stably expressed in cells. We show the suitability of this system for live cell imaging, for visualization of single infected cells, and for screening and testing of antiviral compounds. With the integrated modular building blocks, this system is easy to manipulate and can be adapted to any virus encoding a protease, thus offering a high degree of flexibility.IMPORTANCE Reporter systems are useful tools for fast and quantitative visualization of virus-infected cells within a host cell population. Here, we describe a reporter system that takes advantage of virus-encoded proteases expressed in infected cells to cleave an ER-anchored fluorescent protein fused to a nuclear localization sequence. Upon cleavage, the GFP moiety translocates to the nucleus, allowing for rapid detection of the infected cells. Using this system, we demonstrate reliable reporting activity for two major human pathogens from the Flaviviridae and the Coronaviridae families: dengue virus and SARS-CoV-2. We apply this reporter system to live cell imaging and use it for proof-of-concept to validate antiviral activity of a nucleoside analogue. This reporter system is not only an invaluable tool for the characterization of viral replication, but also for the discovery and development of antivirals that are urgently needed to halt the spread of these viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Dengue Virus/isolation & purification , Dengue/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , A549 Cells , Animals , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dengue/diagnosis , Dengue/metabolism , Dengue/pathology , Dengue Virus/genetics , Dengue Virus/metabolism , Genes, Reporter , Green Fluorescent Proteins/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Nuclear Localization Signals/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication
11.
Bioessays ; 43(3): e2000257, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-995863

ABSTRACT

Emergence of the novel pathogenic coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and its rapid pandemic spread presents challenges that demand immediate attention. Here, we describe the development of a semi-quantitative high-content microscopy-based assay for detection of three major classes (IgG, IgA, and IgM) of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies in human samples. The possibility to detect antibodies against the entire viral proteome together with a robust semi-automated image analysis workflow resulted in specific, sensitive and unbiased assay that complements the portfolio of SARS-CoV-2 serological assays. Sensitive, specific and quantitative serological assays are urgently needed for a better understanding of humoral immune response against the virus as a basis for developing public health strategies to control viral spread. The procedure described here has been used for clinical studies and provides a general framework for the application of quantitative high-throughput microscopy to rapidly develop serological assays for emerging virus infections.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , Immunoassay , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin M/blood , Microscopy/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Testing/methods , Fluorescent Antibody Technique , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Humans , Image Processing, Computer-Assisted/statistics & numerical data , Immune Sera/chemistry , Machine Learning , Sensitivity and Specificity
12.
J Virol ; 95(4)2021 01 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-952556

ABSTRACT

Positive-strand RNA viruses have been the etiological agents in several major disease outbreaks over the last few decades. Examples of this include flaviviruses, such as dengue virus and Zika virus, which cause millions of yearly infections around the globe, and coronaviruses, such as SARS-CoV-2, the source of the current pandemic. The severity of outbreaks caused by these viruses stresses the importance of research aimed at determining methods to limit virus spread and to curb disease severity. Such studies require molecular tools to decipher virus-host interactions and to develop effective treatments. Here, we describe the generation and characterization of a reporter system that can be used to visualize and identify cells infected with dengue virus or SARS-CoV-2. This system is based on viral protease activity that mediates cleavage and nuclear translocation of an engineered fluorescent protein stably expressed in cells. We show the suitability of this system for live cell imaging, for visualization of single infected cells, and for screening and testing of antiviral compounds. With the integrated modular building blocks, this system is easy to manipulate and can be adapted to any virus encoding a protease, thus offering a high degree of flexibility.IMPORTANCE Reporter systems are useful tools for fast and quantitative visualization of virus-infected cells within a host cell population. Here, we describe a reporter system that takes advantage of virus-encoded proteases expressed in infected cells to cleave an ER-anchored fluorescent protein fused to a nuclear localization sequence. Upon cleavage, the GFP moiety translocates to the nucleus, allowing for rapid detection of the infected cells. Using this system, we demonstrate reliable reporting activity for two major human pathogens from the Flaviviridae and the Coronaviridae families: dengue virus and SARS-CoV-2. We apply this reporter system to live cell imaging and use it for proof-of-concept to validate antiviral activity of a nucleoside analogue. This reporter system is not only an invaluable tool for the characterization of viral replication, but also for the discovery and development of antivirals that are urgently needed to halt the spread of these viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Dengue Virus/isolation & purification , Dengue/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , A549 Cells , Animals , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dengue/diagnosis , Dengue/metabolism , Dengue/pathology , Dengue Virus/genetics , Dengue Virus/metabolism , Genes, Reporter , Green Fluorescent Proteins/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Nuclear Localization Signals/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication
13.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 5885, 2020 11 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-933684

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of the COVID19 pandemic, is a highly pathogenic ß-coronavirus. As other coronaviruses, SARS-CoV-2 is enveloped, replicates in the cytoplasm and assembles at intracellular membranes. Here, we structurally characterize the viral replication compartment and report critical insights into the budding mechanism of the virus, and the structure of extracellular virions close to their native state by in situ cryo-electron tomography and subtomogram averaging. We directly visualize RNA filaments inside the double membrane vesicles, compartments associated with viral replication. The RNA filaments show a diameter consistent with double-stranded RNA and frequent branching likely representing RNA secondary structures. We report that assembled S trimers in lumenal cisternae do not alone induce membrane bending but laterally reorganize on the envelope during virion assembly. The viral ribonucleoprotein complexes (vRNPs) are accumulated at the curved membrane characteristic for budding sites suggesting that vRNP recruitment is enhanced by membrane curvature. Subtomogram averaging shows that vRNPs are distinct cylindrical assemblies. We propose that the genome is packaged around multiple separate vRNP complexes, thereby allowing incorporation of the unusually large coronavirus genome into the virion while maintaining high steric flexibility between the vRNPs.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/chemistry , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Virus Replication , A549 Cells , Animals , COVID-19 , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Cytoplasmic Vesicles/virology , Electron Microscope Tomography , Endoplasmic Reticulum/virology , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Vero Cells , Virion/chemistry , Virion/metabolism , Virus Assembly
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL