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biorxiv; 2021.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppzbmed-10.1101.2021.12.28.474380


The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant of concern evades antibody mediated immunity with an unprecedented magnitude due to accumulation of numerous spike mutations. To understand the Omicron antigenic shift, we determined cryo-electron microscopy and X-ray crystal structures of the spike and RBD bound to the broadly neutralizing sarbecovirus monoclonal antibody (mAb) S309 (the parent mAb of sotrovimab) and to the human ACE2 receptor. We provide a structural framework for understanding the marked reduction of binding of all other therapeutic mAbs leading to dampened neutralizing activity. We reveal electrostatic remodeling of the interactions within the spike and those formed between the Omicron RBD and human ACE2, likely explaining enhanced affinity for the host receptor relative to the prototypic virus.

biorxiv; 2020.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppzbmed-10.1101.2020.10.07.307546


During the COVID-19 pandemic, structural biologists rushed to solve the structures of the 28 proteins encoded by the SARS-CoV-2 genome in order to understand the viral life cycle and enable structure-based drug design. In addition to the 204 previously solved structures from SARS-CoV-1, 548 structures covering 16 of the SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins have been released in a span of only 6 months. These structural models serve as the basis for research to understand how the virus hijacks human cells, for structure-based drug design, and to aid in the development of vaccines. However, errors often occur in even the most careful structure determination - and may be even more common among these structures, which were solved quickly and under immense pressure. The Coronavirus Structural Task Force has responded to this challenge by rapidly categorizing, evaluating and reviewing all of these experimental protein structures in order to help downstream users and original authors. In addition, the Task Force provided improved models for key structures online, which have been used by Folding@Home, OpenPandemics, the EU JEDI COVID-19 challenge and others.