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Int J Pept Res Ther ; 28(1): 28, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1568383


Several mutations in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) have increased the transmission and mortality rate of coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) across the globe. Although many vaccines have been developed, a large proportion of the global population remains at high risk of infection. The current study aims to develop an antiviral peptide capable of inhibiting the interaction of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and its six major variants with the host cell angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. An in-silico approach was employed to design a therapeutic peptide inhibitor against the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the spike (S) protein of SARS-CoV-2 and its variants (B.1.1.7, B.1.351, P.1, B.1.617.1, B.1.617.2 and B.1.617.3). The binding specificity and affinity of our designed peptide inhibitor Mod13AApi (YADKYQKQYKDAY) with wild-type S-RBD and its six variants was confirmed by molecular docking using the HPEPDOCK tool, whereas complex stability was determined by the MD simulation study. The physicochemical and ADMET (absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity) properties of inhibitory peptides were determined using the ExPASy tool and pkCSM server. The docking results and its properties from our in-silico analysis present the Mod13AApi, a promising peptide for the rapid development of anti-coronavirus peptide-based antiviral therapy. Blockage of the binding of the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 variants with ACE2 in the presence of the therapeutic peptide may prevent deadly SARS-CoV-2 variants entry into host cells. Therefore, the designed inhibitory peptide can be utilized as a promising therapeutic strategy to combat COVID-19, as evident from this in-silico study.

Virology ; 564: 33-38, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1447220


Endemic seasonal coronaviruses cause morbidity and mortality in a subset of patients, but no specific treatment is available. Molnupiravir is a promising pipeline antiviral drug for treating SARS-CoV-2 infection potentially by targeting RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). This study aims to evaluate the potential of repurposing molnupiravir for treating seasonal human coronavirus (HCoV) infections. Molecular docking revealed that the active form of molnupiravir, ß-D-N4-hydroxycytidine (NHC), has similar binding affinity to RdRp of SARS-CoV-2 and seasonal HCoV-NL63, HCoV-OC43 and HCoV-229E. In cell culture models, treatment of molnupiravir effectively inhibited viral replication and production of infectious viruses of the three seasonal coronaviruses. A time-of-drug-addition experiment indicates the specificity of molnupiravir in inhibiting viral components. Furthermore, combining molnupiravir with the protease inhibitor GC376 resulted in enhanced antiviral activity. Our findings highlight that the great potential of repurposing molnupiravir for treating seasonal coronavirus infected patients.

Coronavirus 229E, Human/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus NL63, Human/genetics , Coronavirus OC43, Human/genetics , Cytidine/analogs & derivatives , Hydroxylamines/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Common Cold/drug therapy , Coronavirus 229E, Human/drug effects , Coronavirus 229E, Human/physiology , Coronavirus NL63, Human/drug effects , Coronavirus NL63, Human/physiology , Coronavirus OC43, Human/drug effects , Coronavirus OC43, Human/physiology , Cytidine/pharmacology , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protein Binding/drug effects , Pyrrolidines/pharmacology , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Seasons , Sulfonic Acids/pharmacology , Virus Replication/drug effects , Virus Replication/genetics