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1.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 1178, 2022 03 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1730285

ABSTRACT

Recently emerged variants of SARS-CoV-2 contain in their surface spike glycoproteins multiple substitutions associated with increased transmission and resistance to neutralising antibodies. We have examined the structure and receptor binding properties of spike proteins from the B.1.1.7 (Alpha) and B.1.351 (Beta) variants to better understand the evolution of the virus in humans. Spikes of both variants have the same mutation, N501Y, in the receptor-binding domains. This substitution confers tighter ACE2 binding, dependent on the common earlier substitution, D614G. Each variant spike has acquired other key changes in structure that likely impact virus pathogenesis. The spike from the Alpha variant is more stable against disruption upon binding ACE2 receptor than all other spikes studied. This feature is linked to the acquisition of a more basic substitution at the S1-S2 furin site (also observed for the variants of concern Delta, Kappa, and Omicron) which allows for near-complete cleavage. In the Beta variant spike, the presence of a new substitution, K417N (also observed in the Omicron variant), in combination with the D614G, stabilises a more open spike trimer, a conformation required for receptor binding. Our observations suggest ways these viruses have evolved to achieve greater transmissibility in humans.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , Mutation, Missense , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Binding Sites/genetics , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Cytopathogenic Effect, Viral/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Kinetics , Models, Molecular , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
2.
Molecules ; 27(3)2022 Jan 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650788

ABSTRACT

The entry of the SARS-CoV-2, a causative agent of COVID-19, into human host cells is mediated by the SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) glycoprotein, which critically depends on the formation of complexes involving the spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) and the human cellular membrane receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2). Using classical site density functional theory (SDFT) and structural bioinformatics methods, we investigate binding and conformational properties of these complexes and study the overlooked role of water-mediated interactions. Analysis of the three-dimensional reference interaction site model (3DRISM) of SDFT indicates that water mediated interactions in the form of additional water bridges strongly increases the binding between SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and hACE2 compared to SARS-CoV-1-hACE2 complex. By analyzing structures of SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-1, we find that the homotrimer SARS-CoV-2 S receptor-binding domain (RBD) has expanded in size, indicating large conformational change relative to SARS-CoV-1 S protein. Protomer with the up-conformational form of RBD, which binds with hACE2, exhibits stronger intermolecular interactions at the RBD-ACE2 interface, with differential distributions and the inclusion of specific H-bonds in the CoV-2 complex. Further interface analysis has shown that interfacial water promotes and stabilizes the formation of CoV-2/hACE2 complex. This interaction causes a significant structural rigidification of the spike protein, favoring proteolytic processing of the S protein for the fusion of the viral and cellular membrane. Moreover, conformational dynamics simulations of RBD motions in SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-1 point to the role in modification of the RBD dynamics and their impact on infectivity.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/physiopathology , Computational Biology/methods , Density Functional Theory , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/physiology , Structure-Activity Relationship
3.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 102: 108424, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1549851

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV2 mutants B.1.1.7, B.1.351, and P.1 contain a key mutation N501Y. B.1.135 and P.1 lineages have another mutation, E484K. Here, we decode the effect of these two mutations on the host receptor, ACE2, and neutralizing antibody (B38) recognition. The N501Y RBD mutant binds to ACE2 with higher affinity due to improved π-π stacking and π-cation interactions. The higher binding affinity of the E484K mutant is caused due to the formation of additional hydrogen bond and salt-bridge interactions with ACE2. Both the mutants bind to the B38 antibody with reduced affinity due to the loss of several hydrogen-bonding interactions. The insights obtained from the study are crucial to interpret the increased transmissibility and reduced neutralization efficacy of rapidly emerging SARS-CoV2 VOCs.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Antibody Affinity/genetics , Binding Sites/genetics , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Virus Internalization
4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 6103, 2021 10 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1475296

ABSTRACT

Multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) have been emerging and some have been linked to an increase in case numbers globally. However, there is yet a lack of understanding of the molecular basis for the interactions between the human ACE2 (hACE2) receptor and these VOCs. Here we examined several VOCs including Alpha, Beta, and Gamma, and demonstrate that five variants receptor-binding domain (RBD) increased binding affinity for hACE2, and four variants pseudoviruses increased entry into susceptible cells. Crystal structures of hACE2-RBD complexes help identify the key residues facilitating changes in hACE2 binding affinity. Additionally, soluble hACE2 protein efficiently prevent most of the variants pseudoviruses. Our findings provide important molecular information and may help the development of novel therapeutic and prophylactic agents targeting these emerging mutants.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/isolation & purification , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Animals , Cell Line, Tumor , Crystallography, X-Ray , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/isolation & purification , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , Recombinant Proteins/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sf9 Cells , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Spodoptera , Surface Plasmon Resonance , Virus Attachment , Virus Internalization
5.
Cell Rep ; 37(2): 109822, 2021 10 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1433046

ABSTRACT

Potent neutralizing monoclonal antibodies are one of the few agents currently available to treat COVID-19. SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) that carry multiple mutations in the viral spike protein can exhibit neutralization resistance, potentially affecting the effectiveness of some antibody-based therapeutics. Here, the generation of a diverse panel of 91 human, neutralizing monoclonal antibodies provides an in-depth structural and phenotypic definition of receptor binding domain (RBD) antigenic sites on the viral spike. These RBD antibodies ameliorate SARS-CoV-2 infection in mice and hamster models in a dose-dependent manner and in proportion to in vitro, neutralizing potency. Assessing the effect of mutations in the spike protein on antibody recognition and neutralization highlights both potent single antibodies and stereotypic classes of antibodies that are unaffected by currently circulating VOCs, such as B.1.351 and P.1. These neutralizing monoclonal antibodies and others that bind analogous epitopes represent potentially useful future anti-SARS-CoV-2 therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cricetinae , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Epitopes/immunology , Female , Humans , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Middle Aged , Neutralization Tests , Protein Binding/physiology , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
6.
Cell Host Microbe ; 28(6): 867-879.e5, 2020 12 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385264

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 spike employs mobile receptor-binding domains (RBDs) to engage the human ACE2 receptor and to facilitate virus entry, which can occur through low-pH-endosomal pathways. To understand how ACE2 binding and low pH affect spike conformation, we determined cryo-electron microscopy structures-at serological and endosomal pH-delineating spike recognition of up to three ACE2 molecules. RBDs freely adopted "up" conformations required for ACE2 interaction, primarily through RBD movement combined with smaller alterations in neighboring domains. In the absence of ACE2, single-RBD-up conformations dominated at pH 5.5, resolving into a solitary all-down conformation at lower pH. Notably, a pH-dependent refolding region (residues 824-858) at the spike-interdomain interface displayed dramatic structural rearrangements and mediated RBD positioning through coordinated movements of the entire trimer apex. These structures provide a foundation for understanding prefusion-spike mechanics governing endosomal entry; we suggest that the low pH all-down conformation potentially facilitates immune evasion from RBD-up binding antibody.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , Pandemics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Amino Acid Sequence/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Neutralizing/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Endosomes/ultrastructure , Humans , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
7.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(17)2021 Aug 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1374424

ABSTRACT

The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) outbreak in December 2019 has caused a global pandemic. The rapid mutation rate in the virus has created alarming situations worldwide and is being attributed to the false negativity in RT-PCR tests. It has also increased the chances of reinfection and immune escape. Recently various lineages namely, B.1.1.7 (Alpha), B.1.617.1 (Kappa), B.1.617.2 (Delta) and B.1.617.3 have caused rapid infection around the globe. To understand the biophysical perspective, we have performed molecular dynamic simulations of four different spikes (receptor binding domain)-hACE2 complexes, namely wildtype (WT), Alpha variant (N501Y spike mutant), Kappa (L452R, E484Q) and Delta (L452R, T478K), and compared their dynamics, binding energy and molecular interactions. Our results show that mutation has caused significant increase in the binding energy between the spike and hACE2 in Alpha and Kappa variants. In the case of Kappa and Delta variants, the mutations at L452R, T478K and E484Q increased the stability and intra-chain interactions in the spike protein, which may change the interaction ability of neutralizing antibodies to these spike variants. Further, we found that the Alpha variant had increased hydrogen interaction with Lys353 of hACE2 and more binding affinity in comparison to WT. The current study provides the biophysical basis for understanding the molecular mechanism and rationale behind the increase in the transmissivity and infectivity of the mutants compared to wild-type SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/transmission , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation , Protein Stability , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Thermodynamics
8.
FEBS J ; 288(17): 5010-5020, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-953326

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the causative agent of the pandemic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) that exhibits an overwhelming contagious capacity over other human coronaviruses (HCoVs). This structural snapshot describes the structural bases underlying the pandemic capacity of SARS-CoV-2 and explains its fast motion over respiratory epithelia that allow its rapid cellular entry. Based on notable viral spike (S) protein features, we propose that the flat sialic acid-binding domain at the N-terminal domain (NTD) of the S1 subunit leads to more effective first contact and interaction with the sialic acid layer over the epithelium, and this, in turn, allows faster viral 'surfing' of the epithelium and receptor scanning by SARS-CoV-2. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE-2) protein on the epithelial surface is the primary entry receptor for SARS-CoV-2, and protein-protein interaction assays demonstrate high-affinity binding of the spike protein (S protein) to ACE-2. To date, no high-frequency mutations were detected at the C-terminal domain of the S1 subunit in the S protein, where the receptor-binding domain (RBD) is located. Tight binding to ACE-2 by a conserved viral RBD suggests the ACE2-RBD interaction is likely optimal. Moreover, the viral S subunit contains a cleavage site for furin and other proteases, which accelerates cell entry by SARS-CoV-2. The model proposed here describes a structural basis for the accelerated host cell entry by SARS-CoV-2 relative to other HCoVs and also discusses emerging hypotheses that are likely to contribute to the development of antiviral strategies to combat the pandemic capacity of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , COVID-19/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites/genetics , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Humans , Pandemics , Protein Binding/genetics , Protein Domains/genetics , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/ultrastructure , Respiratory Mucosa/ultrastructure , Respiratory Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Virus Attachment , Virus Internalization
9.
Nature ; 588(7839): 682-687, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-851300

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic presents an urgent health crisis. Human neutralizing antibodies that target the host ACE2 receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike protein1-5 show promise therapeutically and are being evaluated clinically6-8. Here, to identify the structural correlates of SARS-CoV-2 neutralization, we solved eight new structures of distinct COVID-19 human neutralizing antibodies5 in complex with the SARS-CoV-2 spike trimer or RBD. Structural comparisons allowed us to classify the antibodies into categories: (1) neutralizing antibodies encoded by the VH3-53 gene segment with short CDRH3 loops that block ACE2 and bind only to 'up' RBDs; (2) ACE2-blocking neutralizing antibodies that bind both up and 'down' RBDs and can contact adjacent RBDs; (3) neutralizing antibodies that bind outside the ACE2 site and recognize both up and down RBDs; and (4) previously described antibodies that do not block ACE2 and bind only to up RBDs9. Class 2 contained four neutralizing antibodies with epitopes that bridged RBDs, including a VH3-53 antibody that used a long CDRH3 with a hydrophobic tip to bridge between adjacent down RBDs, thereby locking the spike into a closed conformation. Epitope and paratope mapping revealed few interactions with host-derived N-glycans and minor contributions of antibody somatic hypermutations to epitope contacts. Affinity measurements and mapping of naturally occurring and in vitro-selected spike mutants in 3D provided insight into the potential for SARS-CoV-2 to escape from antibodies elicited during infection or delivered therapeutically. These classifications and structural analyses provide rules for assigning current and future human RBD-targeting antibodies into classes, evaluating avidity effects and suggesting combinations for clinical use, and provide insight into immune responses against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing/ultrastructure , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Binding Sites/genetics , Binding Sites/immunology , Cell Line , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Models, Molecular , Mutation , Receptors, Coronavirus/chemistry , Receptors, Coronavirus/metabolism , Receptors, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure
10.
Nature ; 588(7837): 327-330, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-780015

ABSTRACT

Infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is initiated by virus binding to the ACE2 cell-surface receptors1-4, followed by fusion of the virus and cell membranes to release the virus genome into the cell. Both receptor binding and membrane fusion activities are mediated by the virus spike glycoprotein5-7. As with other class-I membrane-fusion proteins, the spike protein is post-translationally cleaved, in this case by furin, into the S1 and S2 components that remain associated after cleavage8-10. Fusion activation after receptor binding is proposed to involve the exposure of a second proteolytic site (S2'), cleavage of which is required for the release of the fusion peptide11,12. Here we analyse the binding of ACE2 to the furin-cleaved form of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein using cryo-electron microscopy. We classify ten different molecular species, including the unbound, closed spike trimer, the fully open ACE2-bound trimer and dissociated monomeric S1 bound to ACE2. The ten structures describe ACE2-binding events that destabilize the spike trimer, progressively opening up, and out, the individual S1 components. The opening process reduces S1 contacts and unshields the trimeric S2 core, priming the protein for fusion activation and dissociation of ACE2-bound S1 monomers. The structures also reveal refolding of an S1 subdomain after ACE2 binding that disrupts interactions with S2, which involves Asp61413-15 and leads to the destabilization of the structure of S2 proximal to the secondary (S2') cleavage site.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Membrane Fusion/physiology , Protein Binding , Receptors, Coronavirus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Furin/metabolism , Humans , Models, Molecular , Protein Folding , Protein Subunits/chemistry , Protein Subunits/metabolism , Proteolysis , Receptors, Coronavirus/chemistry , Receptors, Coronavirus/ultrastructure , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/ultrastructure
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