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1.
PLoS Biol ; 19(12): e3001490, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1595018

ABSTRACT

Over the past 20 years, 3 highly pathogenic human coronaviruses (HCoVs) have emerged-Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), and, most recently, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-demonstrating that coronaviruses (CoVs) pose a serious threat to human health and highlighting the importance of developing effective therapies against them. Similar to other viruses, CoVs are dependent on host factors for their survival and replication. We hypothesized that evolutionarily distinct CoVs may exploit similar host factors and pathways to support their replication cycles. Herein, we conducted 2 independent genome-wide CRISPR/Cas-9 knockout (KO) screens to identify MERS-CoV and HCoV-229E host dependency factors (HDFs) required for HCoV replication in the human Huh7 cell line. Top scoring genes were further validated and assessed in the context of MERS-CoV and HCoV-229E infection as well as SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 infection. Strikingly, we found that several autophagy-related genes, including TMEM41B, MINAR1, and the immunophilin FKBP8, were common host factors required for pan-CoV replication. Importantly, inhibition of the immunophilin protein family with the compounds cyclosporine A, and the nonimmunosuppressive derivative alisporivir, resulted in dose-dependent inhibition of CoV replication in primary human nasal epithelial cell cultures, which recapitulate the natural site of virus replication. Overall, we identified host factors that are crucial for CoV replication and demonstrated that these factors constitute potential targets for therapeutic intervention by clinically approved drugs.


Subject(s)
Autophagy/genetics , CRISPR-Cas Systems , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Gene Knockdown Techniques , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/drug effects , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Virus Replication
2.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 8: 749588, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1556183

ABSTRACT

Background: Testing of possibly infected individuals remains cornerstone of containing the spread of SARS-CoV-2. Detection dogs could contribute to mass screening. Previous research demonstrated canines' ability to detect SARS-CoV-2-infections but has not investigated if dogs can differentiate between COVID-19 and other virus infections. Methods: Twelve dogs were trained to detect SARS-CoV-2 positive samples. Three test scenarios were performed to evaluate their ability to discriminate SARS-CoV-2-infections from viral infections of a different aetiology. Naso- and oropharyngeal swab samples from individuals and samples from cell culture both infected with one of 15 viruses that may cause COVID-19-like symptoms were presented as distractors in a randomised, double-blind study. Dogs were either trained with SARS-CoV-2 positive saliva samples (test scenario I and II) or with supernatant from cell cultures (test scenario III). Results: When using swab samples from individuals infected with viruses other than SARS-CoV-2 as distractors (test scenario I), dogs detected swab samples from SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals with a mean diagnostic sensitivity of 73.8% (95% CI: 66.0-81.7%) and a specificity of 95.1% (95% CI: 92.6-97.7%). In test scenario II and III cell culture supernatant from cells infected with SARS-CoV-2, cells infected with other coronaviruses and non-infected cells were presented. Dogs achieved mean diagnostic sensitivities of 61.2% (95% CI: 50.7-71.6%, test scenario II) and 75.8% (95% CI: 53.0-98.5%, test scenario III), respectively. The diagnostic specificities were 90.9% (95% CI: 87.3-94.6%, test scenario II) and 90.2% (95% CI: 81.1-99.4%, test scenario III), respectively. Conclusion: In all three test scenarios the mean specificities were above 90% which indicates that dogs can distinguish SARS-CoV-2-infections from other viral infections. However, compared to earlier studies our scent dogs achieved lower diagnostic sensitivities. To deploy COVID-19 detection dogs as a reliable screening method it is therefore mandatory to include a variety of samples from different viral respiratory tract infections in dog training to ensure a successful discrimination process.

3.
EMBO J ; 40(11): e102277, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1194823

ABSTRACT

The ongoing outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) demonstrates the continuous threat of emerging coronaviruses (CoVs) to public health. SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV share an otherwise non-conserved part of non-structural protein 3 (Nsp3), therefore named as "SARS-unique domain" (SUD). We previously found a yeast-2-hybrid screen interaction of the SARS-CoV SUD with human poly(A)-binding protein (PABP)-interacting protein 1 (Paip1), a stimulator of protein translation. Here, we validate SARS-CoV SUD:Paip1 interaction by size-exclusion chromatography, split-yellow fluorescent protein, and co-immunoprecipitation assays, and confirm such interaction also between the corresponding domain of SARS-CoV-2 and Paip1. The three-dimensional structure of the N-terminal domain of SARS-CoV SUD ("macrodomain II", Mac2) in complex with the middle domain of Paip1, determined by X-ray crystallography and small-angle X-ray scattering, provides insights into the structural determinants of the complex formation. In cellulo, SUD enhances synthesis of viral but not host proteins via binding to Paip1 in pBAC-SARS-CoV replicon-transfected cells. We propose a possible mechanism for stimulation of viral translation by the SUD of SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation, Viral , Peptide Initiation Factors/metabolism , RNA-Binding Proteins/metabolism , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , SARS Virus/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Bacterial Proteins , Chromatography, Gel , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , Crystallography, X-Ray , Genes, Reporter , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunoprecipitation , Luminescent Proteins , Models, Molecular , Peptide Initiation Factors/chemistry , Protein Binding , Protein Biosynthesis , Protein Conformation , Protein Domains , Protein Interaction Mapping , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA-Binding Proteins/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/metabolism , Ribosome Subunits/metabolism , SARS Virus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Scattering, Small Angle , Sequence Alignment , Sequence Homology, Amino Acid , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , X-Ray Diffraction
4.
Mol Biomed ; 1(1): 2, 2020 Aug 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-717580

ABSTRACT

The newly emerging severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has resulted in a global human health crisis. The CoV nucleocapsid (N) protein plays essential roles both in the viral genomic RNA packaging and the regulation of host cellular machinery. Here, to contribute to the structural information of the N protein, we describe the 2.0 Å crystal structure of the SARS-CoV-2 N protein C-terminal domain (N-CTD). The structure indicates an extensive interaction dimer in a domain-swapped manner. The interface of this dimer was first thoroughly illustrated. Also, the SARS-CoV-2 N-CTD dimerization form was verified in solution using size-exclusion chromatography. Based on the structural comparison of the N-CTDs from alpha-, beta-, and gamma-CoVs, we demonstrate the common and specific characteristics of the SARS-CoV-2 N-CTD. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the SARS-CoV-2 N-CTD possesses the binding ability to single-stranded RNA, single-stranded DNA as well as double-stranded DNA in vitro. In conclusion, this study could potentially accelerate research to understand the complete biological functions of the new CoV N protein.

5.
Am J Transplant ; 20(11): 2975-2982, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-703596

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is declared a global health emergency. COVID-19 is triggered by a novel coronavirus: severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Baseline characteristics of admitted patients with COVID-19 show that adiposity, diabetes, and hypertension are risk factors for developing severe disease, but so far immunosuppressed patients who are listed as high-risk patients have not been more susceptible to severe COVID-19 than the rest of the population. Multiple clinical trials are currently being conducted, which may identify more drugs that can lower mortality, morbidity, and burden on the society. Several independent studies have convincingly shown that cyclosporine inhibit replication of several different coronaviruses in vitro. The cyclosporine-analog alisporivir has recently been shown to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 in vitro. These findings are intriguing, although there is no clinical evidence for a protective effect to reduce the likelihood of severe COVID-19 or to treat the immune storm or acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) that often causes severe morbidity. Here, we review the putative link between COVID-19 and cyclosporine, while we await more robust clinical data.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Cyclosporine/therapeutic use , Immunocompromised Host , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , Humans , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use
6.
Med Drug Discov ; 7: 100056, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-651663

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of pneumonia caused by a new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) occurred in December 2019, and spread rapidly throughout the world. There have been other severe coronavirus outbreaks worldwide, namely, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS-CoV). Because the genetic diversity of coronaviruses renders the design of vaccines complicated, broad spectrum-anti-coronavirus drugs have become a critical approach to control the coronavirus epidemic. Cyclophilin A is an important protein needed for coronavirus replication, and its inhibitor cyclosporine A has the ability to suppress coronavirus on a broad spectrum. CD147-S protein was found to be one route by which SARS-CoV-2 invades host cells, while CD147 was found to play a functional role in facilitating the infection of host cells by SARS-CoV. The CyPA/CD147 interaction may play a critical role in the ability of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to enter the host cells. However, cyclosporine A has immunosuppressive effects, so the conditions for its use as an antiviral drug are limited. As a result, cyclosporine A analogues without immunosuppressive side effects have attracted lots of interest. This review primarily discusses the drug development prospects of cyclophilin A as a therapeutic target for the treatment of coronavirus infection, especially coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and non-immunosuppressive cyclosporine analogues.

7.
J Med Chem ; 63(9): 4562-4578, 2020 05 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-613484

ABSTRACT

The main protease of coronaviruses and the 3C protease of enteroviruses share a similar active-site architecture and a unique requirement for glutamine in the P1 position of the substrate. Because of their unique specificity and essential role in viral polyprotein processing, these proteases are suitable targets for the development of antiviral drugs. In order to obtain near-equipotent, broad-spectrum antivirals against alphacoronaviruses, betacoronaviruses, and enteroviruses, we pursued a structure-based design of peptidomimetic α-ketoamides as inhibitors of main and 3C proteases. Six crystal structures of protease-inhibitor complexes were determined as part of this study. Compounds synthesized were tested against the recombinant proteases as well as in viral replicons and virus-infected cell cultures; most of them were not cell-toxic. Optimization of the P2 substituent of the α-ketoamides proved crucial for achieving near-equipotency against the three virus genera. The best near-equipotent inhibitors, 11u (P2 = cyclopentylmethyl) and 11r (P2 = cyclohexylmethyl), display low-micromolar EC50 values against enteroviruses, alphacoronaviruses, and betacoronaviruses in cell cultures. In Huh7 cells, 11r exhibits three-digit picomolar activity against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus/drug effects , Enterovirus/drug effects , Lactams/pharmacology , Peptidomimetics/pharmacology , Virus Replication/drug effects , 3C Viral Proteases , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemical synthesis , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Binding Sites , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus/enzymology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Crystallography, X-Ray , Cysteine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Cysteine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Drug Design , Enterovirus/enzymology , Humans , Lactams/chemical synthesis , Lactams/metabolism , Peptidomimetics/chemical synthesis , Peptidomimetics/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/chemical synthesis , Protease Inhibitors/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , Protein Binding , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/metabolism
8.
Infection ; 48(3): 483-486, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-46941
9.
Antiviral Research January ; 173:104620, 2020.
Article | WHO COVID | ID: covidwho-42307

ABSTRACT

The well-known immunosuppressive drug cyclosporin A inhibits replication of various viruses including coronaviruses by binding to cellular cyclophilins thus inactivating their cis-trans peptidyl-prolyl isomerase function. Viral nucleocapsid proteins are inevitable for genome encapsidation and replication. Here we demonstrate the interaction between the N protein of HCoV-229E and cyclophilin A, not cyclophilin B. Cyclophilin inhibitors abolish this interaction. Upon infection, cyclophilin A stays evenly distributed throughout the cell, whereas cyclophilin B concentrates at ER-bleb-like structures. We further show the inhibitory potential of non-immunosuppressive CsA derivatives Alisporivir, NIM811, compound 3 on HCoV-229E-GFP and -Luciferase replication in human Huh-7.5 hepatoma cells at 18 and 48 h time points post infection with EC50 s at low micromolar ranges. Thus, non-immunosuppressive CsA derivatives effectively inhibit HCoV-229E replication suggesting them as possible candidates for the treatment of HCoV infection. The interruption of interaction between CypA and N protein by CsA and its derivatives suggest a mechanism how CypA inhibitors suppress viral replication., Highlights:, * HCoV-229E replication is inhibited by Alisporivir, NIM811 and other non-immunosuppressive Cyclosporin A derivatives., * HCoV-229E N protein interacts with cyclophilin A., * Cyclophilin A is required for coronavirus replication., * Cyclophilin B concentrates in bleb-like structures of the ER in HCoV-infected Huh7 cells., (C) 2020Elsevier, Inc.

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