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1.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 50(2): 635-650, 2022 01 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621653

ABSTRACT

Coronaviral methyltransferases (MTases), nsp10/16 and nsp14, catalyze the last two steps of viral RNA-cap creation that takes place in cytoplasm. This cap is essential for the stability of viral RNA and, most importantly, for the evasion of innate immune system. Non-capped RNA is recognized by innate immunity which leads to its degradation and the activation of antiviral immunity. As a result, both coronaviral MTases are in the center of scientific scrutiny. Recently, X-ray and cryo-EM structures of both enzymes were solved even in complex with other parts of the viral replication complex. High-throughput screening as well as structure-guided inhibitor design have led to the discovery of their potent inhibitors. Here, we critically summarize the tremendous advancement of the coronaviral MTase field since the beginning of COVID pandemic.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus/drug effects , Coronavirus/enzymology , Methyltransferases/antagonists & inhibitors , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Amino Acids/chemistry , Binding Sites , Coronavirus/genetics , Drug Discovery , Humans , Methylation , Models, Molecular , Molecular Conformation , Molecular Structure , Protein Binding , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , Structure-Activity Relationship
2.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(23)2021 Nov 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1559503

ABSTRACT

Cancer is one of the most important health problems of our population, and one of the common anticancer treatments is chemotherapy. The disadvantages of chemotherapy are related to the drug's toxic effects, which act on cancer cells and the healthy part of the body. The solution of the problem is drug encapsulation and drug targeting. The present study aimed to develop a novel method of preparing multifunctional 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) nanocarriers and their in vitro characterization. 5-FU polyaminoacid-based core@shell nanocarriers were formed by encapsulation drug-loaded nanocores with polyaminoacids multilayer shell via layer-by-layer method. The size of prepared nanocarriers ranged between 80-200 nm. Biocompatibility of our nanocarriers as well as activity of the encapsulated drug were confirmed by MTT tests. Moreover, the ability to the real-time observation of developed nanocarriers and drug accumulation inside the target was confirmed by fluorine magnetic resonance imaging (19F-MRI).


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/chemistry , Drug Carriers/administration & dosage , Drug Carriers/chemical synthesis , Fluorouracil/pharmacology , Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental/drug therapy , Nanoparticles/administration & dosage , Animals , Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic/chemistry , Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic/pharmacology , Female , Fluorouracil/chemistry , Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental/pathology , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Tumor Cells, Cultured
3.
J Mol Model ; 27(11): 323, 2021 Oct 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1525539

ABSTRACT

The world has face the COVID-19 pandemic which has already caused millions of death. Due to the urgency in fighting the virus, we study five residues of free amino acids present in the structure of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S). We investigated the spontaneous interaction between amino acids and silver ions (Ag+), considering these ions as a virucide chemical agent for SARS-CoV-2. The amino acid-Ag+ systems were investigated in a gaseous medium and a simulated water environment was described with a continuum model (PCM) the calculations were performed within the framework of density functional theory (DFT). Calculations related to the occupied orbitals of higher energy showed that Ag+ has a tendency to interact with the nitrile groups (-NH). The negative values of the Gibbs free energies show that the interaction process between amino acids-Ag+ in both media occurs spontaneously. There is a decrease in Gibbs free energy from the amino acid-Ag+ interactions immersed in a water solvation simulator.


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Density Functional Theory , Silver/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Amino Acids/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Binding Sites , Cations, Monovalent , Gene Expression , Humans , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Silver/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/antagonists & inhibitors , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Static Electricity , Thermodynamics
4.
Chirality ; 34(1): 86-103, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1490729

ABSTRACT

Amino acids (AAs) play an important role in the modern health industry as key synthetic precursors for pharmaceuticals, biomaterials, biosensors, and drug delivery systems. Currently, over 30% of small-molecule drugs contain residues of tailor-made AAs or derived from them amino-alcohols and di-amines. In this review article, we profile 12 AA-derived new pharmaceuticals approved by the FDA in 2020. These newly introduced drugs include Tazverik (epithelioid sarcoma), Gemtesa (overactive bladder), Zeposia (multiple sclerosis), Byfavo (induction and maintenance of procedural sedation), Cu 64 dotatate, and Gallium 68 PSMA-11 (both PET imaging), Rimegepant (acute migraine), Zepzelca (lung cancer), Remdesivir (COVID-19), Amisulpride (nausea and vomiting), Setmelanotide (obesity), and Lonafarnib (progeria syndrome). For each compound, we describe the spectrum of biological activity, medicinal chemistry discovery, and synthetic preparation.


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/pharmacology , Drug Approval , Pharmaceutical Preparations/chemistry , Amino Acids/chemistry , Molecular Structure , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
5.
J Mol Model ; 27(11): 323, 2021 Oct 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1465873

ABSTRACT

The world has face the COVID-19 pandemic which has already caused millions of death. Due to the urgency in fighting the virus, we study five residues of free amino acids present in the structure of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S). We investigated the spontaneous interaction between amino acids and silver ions (Ag+), considering these ions as a virucide chemical agent for SARS-CoV-2. The amino acid-Ag+ systems were investigated in a gaseous medium and a simulated water environment was described with a continuum model (PCM) the calculations were performed within the framework of density functional theory (DFT). Calculations related to the occupied orbitals of higher energy showed that Ag+ has a tendency to interact with the nitrile groups (-NH). The negative values of the Gibbs free energies show that the interaction process between amino acids-Ag+ in both media occurs spontaneously. There is a decrease in Gibbs free energy from the amino acid-Ag+ interactions immersed in a water solvation simulator.


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Density Functional Theory , Silver/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Amino Acids/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Binding Sites , Cations, Monovalent , Gene Expression , Humans , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Silver/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/antagonists & inhibitors , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Static Electricity , Thermodynamics
6.
Database (Oxford) ; 20212021 09 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1443040

ABSTRACT

EpiSurf is a Web application for selecting viral populations of interest and then analyzing how their amino acid changes are distributed along epitopes. Viral sequences are searched within ViruSurf, which stores curated metadata and amino acid changes imported from the most widely used deposition sources for viral databases (GenBank, COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) and Global initiative on sharing all influenza data (GISAID)). Epitopes are searched within the open source Immune Epitope Database or directly proposed by users by indicating their start and stop positions in the context of a given viral protein. Amino acid changes of selected populations are joined with epitopes of interest; a result table summarizes, for each epitope, statistics about the overlapping amino acid changes and about the sequences carrying such alterations. The results may also be inspected by the VirusViz Web application; epitope regions are highlighted within the given viral protein, and changes can be comparatively inspected. For sequences mutated within the epitope, we also offer a complete view of the distribution of amino acid changes, optionally grouped by the location, collection date or lineage. Thanks to these functionalities, EpiSurf supports the user-friendly testing of epitope conservancy within selected populations of interest, which can be of utmost relevance for designing vaccines, drugs or serological assays. EpiSurf is available at two endpoints. Database URL: http://gmql.eu/episurf/ (for searching GenBank and COG-UK sequences) and http://gmql.eu/episurf_gisaid/ (for GISAID sequences).


Subject(s)
Amino Acid Substitution , Antigens, Viral/chemistry , Epitopes/chemistry , Internet , Metadata , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Search Engine , Software , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/immunology , Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Epitopes/immunology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
7.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 18847, 2021 09 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1434148

ABSTRACT

As the SARS-CoV-2 has spread and the pandemic has dragged on, the virus continued to evolve rapidly resulting in the emergence of new highly transmissible variants that can be of public health concern. The evolutionary mechanisms that drove this rapid diversity are not well understood but neutral evolution should open the first insight. The neutral theory of evolution states that most mutations in the nucleic acid sequences are random and they can be fixed or disappear by purifying selection. Herein, we performed a neutrality test to better understand the selective pressures exerted over SARS-CoV-2 spike protein from homologue proteins of Betacoronavirus, as well as to the spikes from human clinical isolates of the virus. Specifically, Tyr and Asn have higher occurrence rates on the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) and in the overall sequence of spike proteins of Betacoronavirus, whereas His and Arg have lower occurrence rates. The in vivo evolutionary phenomenon of SARS-CoV-2 shows that Glu, Lys, Phe, and Val have the highest probability of occurrence in the emergent viral particles. Amino acids that have higher occurrence than the expected by the neutral control, are favorable and are fixed in the sequence while the ones that have lower occurrence than expected, influence the stability and/or functionality of the protein. Our results show that most unique mutations either for SARS-CoV-2 or its variants of health concern are under selective pressures, which could be related either to the evasion of the immune system, increasing the virus' fitness or altering protein - protein interactions with host proteins. We explored the consequences of those selected mutations in the structure and protein - protein interaction with the receptor. Altogether all these forces have shaped the spike protein and the continually evolving variants.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Genetic Drift , Glycosylation , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Mutation , Protein Binding/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry
8.
Arch Toxicol ; 95(4): 1179-1226, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1384375

ABSTRACT

Here, we addressed the pharmacology and toxicology of synthetic organoselenium compounds and some naturally occurring organoselenium amino acids. The use of selenium as a tool in organic synthesis and as a pharmacological agent goes back to the middle of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries. The rediscovery of ebselen and its investigation in clinical trials have motivated the search for new organoselenium molecules with pharmacological properties. Although ebselen and diselenides have some overlapping pharmacological properties, their molecular targets are not identical. However, they have similar anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities, possibly, via activation of transcription factors, regulating the expression of antioxidant genes. In short, our knowledge about the pharmacological properties of simple organoselenium compounds is still elusive. However, contrary to our early expectations that they could imitate selenoproteins, organoselenium compounds seem to have non-specific modulatory activation of antioxidant pathways and specific inhibitory effects in some thiol-containing proteins. The thiol-oxidizing properties of organoselenium compounds are considered the molecular basis of their chronic toxicity; however, the acute use of organoselenium compounds as inhibitors of specific thiol-containing enzymes can be of therapeutic significance. In summary, the outcomes of the clinical trials of ebselen as a mimetic of lithium or as an inhibitor of SARS-CoV-2 proteases will be important to the field of organoselenium synthesis. The development of computational techniques that could predict rational modifications in the structure of organoselenium compounds to increase their specificity is required to construct a library of thiol-modifying agents with selectivity toward specific target proteins.


Subject(s)
Organoselenium Compounds/pharmacology , Organoselenium Compounds/toxicity , Amino Acids/chemistry , Animals , Azoles , Humans , Isoindoles , Molecular Structure , Selenium/chemistry , Selenium/physiology , Selenoproteins/chemistry , Sulfhydryl Compounds/chemistry
9.
Molecules ; 26(2)2021 Jan 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389464

ABSTRACT

Peptides are fragments of proteins that carry out biological functions. They act as signaling entities via all domains of life and interfere with protein-protein interactions, which are indispensable in bio-processes. Short peptides include fundamental molecular information for a prelude to the symphony of life. They have aroused considerable interest due to their unique features and great promise in innovative bio-therapies. This work focusing on the current state-of-the-art short peptide-based therapeutical developments is the first global review written by researchers from all continents, as a celebration of 100 years of peptide therapeutics since the commencement of insulin therapy in the 1920s. Peptide "drugs" initially played only the role of hormone analogs to balance disorders. Nowadays, they achieve numerous biomedical tasks, can cross membranes, or reach intracellular targets. The role of peptides in bio-processes can hardly be mimicked by other chemical substances. The article is divided into independent sections, which are related to either the progress in short peptide-based theranostics or the problems posing challenge to bio-medicine. In particular, the SWOT analysis of short peptides, their relevance in therapies of diverse diseases, improvements in (bio)synthesis platforms, advanced nano-supramolecular technologies, aptamers, altered peptide ligands and in silico methodologies to overcome peptide limitations, modern smart bio-functional materials, vaccines, and drug/gene-targeted delivery systems are discussed.


Subject(s)
Anti-Infective Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Peptides/chemistry , Peptides/pharmacology , Peptides/therapeutic use , Amino Acids/chemistry , Anti-Infective Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , Computer Simulation , Cosmeceuticals/chemistry , Cosmeceuticals/therapeutic use , Dietary Supplements , Gene Transfer Techniques , Humans , Lactoferrin/chemistry , Lipid Bilayers , Nanostructures/administration & dosage , Nanostructures/chemistry , Peptides/administration & dosage , Stem Cells , Vaccines, Subunit/chemistry , Vaccines, Subunit/pharmacology
11.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 59(45): 20154-20160, 2020 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1384106

ABSTRACT

Phosphoramidates composed of an amino acid and a nucleotide analogue are critical metabolites of prodrugs, such as remdesivir. Hydrolysis of the phosphoramidate liberates the nucleotide, which can then be phosphorylated to become the pharmacologically active triphosphate. Enzymatic hydrolysis has been demonstrated, but a spontaneous chemical process may also occur. We measured the rate of enzyme-free hydrolysis for 17 phosphoramidates of ribonucleotides with amino acids or related compounds at pH 7.5. Phosphoramidates of proline hydrolyzed fast, with a half-life time as short as 2.4 h for Pro-AMP in ethylimidazole-containing buffer at 37 °C; 45-fold faster than Ala-AMP and 120-fold faster than Phe-AMP. Crystal structures of Gly-AMP, Pro-AMP, ßPro-AMP and Phe-AMP bound to RNase A as crystallization chaperone showed how well the carboxylate is poised to attack the phosphoramidate, helping to explain this reactivity. Our results are significant for the design of new antiviral prodrugs.


Subject(s)
Amides/metabolism , Amino Acids/chemistry , Nucleotides/metabolism , Phosphoric Acids/metabolism , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/chemistry , Adenosine Monophosphate/metabolism , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/chemistry , Alanine/metabolism , Amides/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Crystallography, X-Ray , Half-Life , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Hydrolysis , Kinetics , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Nucleotides/chemistry , Phosphoric Acids/chemistry , Ribonuclease, Pancreatic/chemistry , Ribonuclease, Pancreatic/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
12.
Life Sci ; 281: 119774, 2021 Sep 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1284329

ABSTRACT

AIM: The present study attempts to decipher the site-specific amino acid alterations at certain positions experiencing preferential selectivity and their effect on proteins' stability and flexibility. The study examines the selection preferences by considering pair-wise non-bonded interaction energies of adjacent and interacting amino acids present at the interacting site, along with their evolutionary history. MATERIALS AND METHODS: For the study, variations in the interacting residues of spike protein (S-Protein) receptor-binding domain (RBD) of different coronaviruses were examined. The MD simulation trajectory analysis revealed that, though all the variants studied were structurally stable at their native and bound confirmations, the RBD of 2019-nCoV/SARS-CoV-2 was found to be more flexible and more dynamic. Furthermore, a noticeable change observed in the non-bonded interaction energies of the amino acids interacting with the receptor corroborated their selection at respective positions. KEY FINDINGS: The conformational changes exerted by the altered amino acids could be the reason for a broader range of interacting receptors among the selected proteins. SIGNIFICANCE: The results envisage a strong indication that the residue selection at certain positions is governed by a well-orchestrated feedback mechanism, which follows increased stability and flexibility in the folded structure compared to its evolutionary predecessor.


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/chemistry , Biological Evolution , Proteins/chemistry , Crystallography, X-Ray , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Phylogeny , Protein Conformation , Protein Folding
13.
Bioorg Med Chem Lett ; 47: 128202, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1272320

ABSTRACT

Cathepsin C plays a key role in the activation of several degradative enzymes linked to tissue destruction in chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Therefore, Cathepsin C inhibitors could potentially be effective therapeutics for the treatment of diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). In our efforts towards the development of a novel series of Cathepsin C inhibitors, we started working around AZD5248 (1), an α-amino acid based scaffold having potential liability of aortic binding. A novel series of amidoacetonitrile based Cathepsin C inhibitors were developed by the application of a conformational restriction strategy on 1. In particular, this work led to the development of a potent and selective Cathepsin C inhibitor 3p, free of aortic binding liability.


Subject(s)
Aorta/metabolism , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cathepsin C/antagonists & inhibitors , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemical synthesis , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/drug therapy , Acetonitriles/chemistry , Acetonitriles/pharmacology , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/pharmacology , Biphenyl Compounds/pharmacology , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Models, Molecular , Molecular Structure , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/etiology , Structure-Activity Relationship
14.
Genes (Basel) ; 12(6)2021 05 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1256475

ABSTRACT

The genomic diversity of SARS-CoV-2 has been a focus during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we analyzed the distribution and character of emerging mutations in a data set comprising more than 95,000 virus genomes covering eight major SARS-CoV-2 lineages in the GISAID database, including genotypes arising during COVID-19 therapy. Globally, the C>U transitions and G>U transversions were the most represented mutations, accounting for the majority of single-nucleotide variations. Mutational spectra were not influenced by the time the virus had been circulating in its host or medical treatment. At the amino acid level, we observed about a 2-fold excess of substitutions in favor of hydrophobic amino acids over the reverse. However, most mutations constituting variants of interests of the S-protein (spike) lead to hydrophilic amino acids, counteracting the global trend. The C>U and G>U substitutions altered codons towards increased amino acid hydrophobicity values in more than 80% of cases. The bias is explained by the existing differences in the codon composition for amino acids bearing contrasting biochemical properties. Mutation asymmetries apparently influence the biochemical features of SARS CoV-2 proteins, which may impact protein-protein interactions, fusion of viral and cellular membranes, and virion assembly.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics , APOBEC Deaminases , Alleles , Amino Acid Substitution , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Genetic Variation , Genotype , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Phylogeny , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Protein Binding , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
15.
Nat Rev Microbiol ; 19(7): 409-424, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253944

ABSTRACT

Although most mutations in the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) genome are expected to be either deleterious and swiftly purged or relatively neutral, a small proportion will affect functional properties and may alter infectivity, disease severity or interactions with host immunity. The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 in late 2019 was followed by a period of relative evolutionary stasis lasting about 11 months. Since late 2020, however, SARS-CoV-2 evolution has been characterized by the emergence of sets of mutations, in the context of 'variants of concern', that impact virus characteristics, including transmissibility and antigenicity, probably in response to the changing immune profile of the human population. There is emerging evidence of reduced neutralization of some SARS-CoV-2 variants by postvaccination serum; however, a greater understanding of correlates of protection is required to evaluate how this may impact vaccine effectiveness. Nonetheless, manufacturers are preparing platforms for a possible update of vaccine sequences, and it is crucial that surveillance of genetic and antigenic changes in the global virus population is done alongside experiments to elucidate the phenotypic impacts of mutations. In this Review, we summarize the literature on mutations of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, the primary antigen, focusing on their impacts on antigenicity and contextualizing them in the protein structure, and discuss them in the context of observed mutation frequencies in global sequence datasets.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Immune Evasion , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/classification , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/genetics , Antigenic Variation/genetics , Antigenic Variation/physiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/standards , Epitopes/chemistry , Epitopes/genetics , Epitopes/immunology , Humans , Immune Evasion/genetics , Mutation , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/classification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
16.
Toxicology ; 458: 152822, 2021 06 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1246198

ABSTRACT

Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) was noted to produce severe cardiac arrhythmia, an adverse effect as its use against severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by coronavirus 2 (SAES-CoV-2). HCQ is an antimalarial drug with quinoline structure. Some other quinoline compounds, such as fluoroquinolone antibiotics (FQs), also lead to arrhythmias characterized by QT prolongation. QT prolongation is usually related to the human ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG) potassium channel inhibitory activity of most drugs. In this research, molecular docking was used to study the potential inhibitory activities of HCQ as well as other quinolines derivatives and hERG potassium channel protein. The possible causes of these QT prolongation effects were revealed. Molecular docking and patch clamp experiments showed that HCQ could bind to hERG and inhibit the efflux of potassium ion preferentially in the repolarization stage. The IC50 of HCQ was 8.6 µM ± 0.8 µM. FQs, which are quinoline derivatives, could also bind to hERG molecules. The binding energies of FQs varied according to their molecular polarity. It was found that drugs with a quinoline structure, particularly with high molecular polarity, can exert a significant potential hERG inhibitory activity. The potential side effects of QT prolongation during the development and use of quinolines should be carefully considered.


Subject(s)
Ether-A-Go-Go Potassium Channels/antagonists & inhibitors , Hydroxychloroquine/pharmacology , Amino Acids/chemistry , Computational Biology , Ether-A-Go-Go Potassium Channels/chemistry , Ether-A-Go-Go Potassium Channels/drug effects , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/chemistry , Inhibitory Concentration 50 , Molecular Docking Simulation , Patch-Clamp Techniques
17.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(19)2021 05 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1214021

ABSTRACT

To realize RNA interference (RNAi) therapeutics, it is necessary to deliver therapeutic RNAs (such as small interfering RNA or siRNA) into cell cytoplasm. A major challenge of RNAi therapeutics is the endosomal entrapment of the delivered siRNA. In this study, we developed a family of delivery vehicles called Janus base nanopieces (NPs). They are rod-shaped nanoparticles formed by bundles of Janus base nanotubes (JBNTs) with RNA cargoes incorporated inside via charge interactions. JBNTs are formed by noncovalent interactions of small molecules consisting of a base component mimicking DNA bases and an amino acid side chain. NPs presented many advantages over conventional delivery materials. NPs efficiently entered cells via macropinocytosis similar to lipid nanoparticles while presenting much better endosomal escape ability than lipid nanoparticles; NPs escaped from endosomes via a "proton sponge" effect similar to cationic polymers while presenting significant lower cytotoxicity compared to polymers and lipids due to their noncovalent structures and DNA-mimicking chemistry. In a proof-of-concept experiment, we have shown that NPs are promising candidates for antiviral delivery applications, which may be used for conditions such as COVID-19 in the future.


Subject(s)
DNA/chemistry , Drug Delivery Systems , Endosomes/metabolism , Nanostructures/administration & dosage , Amino Acids/chemistry , Cell Survival , Endocytosis , Humans , Nanostructures/chemistry , Nanotubes, Peptide/chemistry , RNA, Small Interfering/administration & dosage , RNA, Small Interfering/chemistry , RNA, Small Interfering/metabolism , RNAi Therapeutics
18.
J Bioinform Comput Biol ; 19(4): 2150011, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1208936

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 pandemic has caused a global health crisis. Developing vaccines would need a good knowledge of genetic properties of SARS-CoV-2. The most fundamental approach is to look into the structures of its RNA, in particular, the nucleotides and amino acids. This motivates our research on this topic. We study the occurrence structures of nitrogenous bases and amino acids. To this aim, we devise a structural metric which could measure the structure differences for bases or amino acids. By analyzing various SARS-CoV-2 samples, we calculate the distance matrices for nitrogenous bases and amino acids. Based on the distance matrices, we find the average distance matrices for them, respectively. Then we identify the relations of all the minimal distances between bases and amino acids. The results also show that different substructures would yield much more diversified distances between amino acids. In the end, we also conduct the comparison of our structural metric with other frequently used metrics, in particular, Hausdorff metrics.


Subject(s)
Amino Acids/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Amino Acids/genetics , Computational Biology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/chemistry , Phosphoproteins/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/chemistry
19.
Phys Chem Chem Phys ; 23(12): 7261-7270, 2021 Mar 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1180284

ABSTRACT

Interactions between proteins and small molecules play important roles in the inhibition of protein function. However, a lack of proper knowledge about non-covalent interactions can act as a barrier towards gaining a complete understanding of the factors that control these associations. To find effective molecules for COVID-19 inhibition, we have quantitatively investigated 143 X-ray crystal structures of the SARS-CoV-2 Mpro protein of coronavirus with covalently or non-covalently bound small molecules (SMs). Our present study is able to explain ordinary and perceptive aspects relating to protein inhibition. The active site of the protein consists of 21 amino acid residues, but only nine are actively involved in the ligand binding process. The H41, M49, and C145 residues have highest priority with respect to interactions with small molecules through hydrogen bond, CH-π, and van der Waals interactions. At the active site, this ranking of amino acids is clear, based on different spatial orientations of ligands, and consistent with the electronic properties. SMs with aromatic moieties that bind to the active site of the protein play a distinct role in the determination of the following order of interaction frequency with the amino acids: CH-π > H-bonding > polar interactions. This present study revealed that the G143 and C145 residues play crucial roles in the recognition of the carbonyl functionality of SMs through hydrogen bonding. With this knowledge in mind, an effective inhibitor small-molecule for SARS-CoV-2 Mpro was designed: docking studies showed that the designed molecule has strong binding affinity towards the protein. The non-covalent interactions in the protein-ligand complex are in good agreement with the results obtained from X-ray crystallography. Moreover, the present study focused on weak forces and their influence on protein inhibition, henceforth shedding much light on the essential requirements for moieties that should be present in a good inhibitor and their orientations at the ligand binding site.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Crystallography, X-Ray/methods , Drug Design , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Amino Acids/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , Drug Interactions , Ligands , Molecular Structure
20.
Genome ; 64(7): 665-678, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1166573

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is mutating and creating divergent variants across the world. An in-depth investigation of the amino acid substitutions in the genomic signature of SARS-CoV-2 proteins is highly essential for understanding its host adaptation and infection biology. A total of 9587 SARS-CoV-2 structural protein sequences collected from 49 different countries are used to characterize protein-wise variants, substitution patterns (type and location), and major substitution changes. The majority of the substitutions are distinct, mostly in a particular location, and lead to a change in an amino acid's biochemical properties. In terms of mutational changes, envelope (E) and membrane (M) proteins are relatively more stable than nucleocapsid (N) and spike (S) proteins. Several co-occurrence substitutions are observed, particularly in S and N proteins. Substitution specific to active sub-domains reveals that heptapeptide repeat, fusion peptides, transmembrane in S protein, and N-terminal and C-terminal domains in the N protein are remarkably mutated. We also observe a few deleterious mutations in the above domains. The overall study on non-synonymous mutation in structural proteins of SARS-CoV-2 at the start of the pandemic indicates a diversity amongst virus sequences.


Subject(s)
SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Viral Structural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Structural Proteins/genetics , Amino Acid Substitution , Amino Acids/chemistry , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/genetics , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/chemistry , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Humans , Mutation , Mutation Rate , Phosphoproteins/chemistry , Phosphoproteins/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/genetics
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