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1.
STAR Protoc ; 3(1): 101067, 2022 03 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1595326

ABSTRACT

N 6 -methylation of adenosine (m6A) is the most abundant internal mRNA modification and is an important post-transcriptional regulator of gene expression. Here, we describe a protocol for methylated RNA immunoprecipitation sequencing (MeRIP-Seq) to detect and quantify m6A modifications in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) RNA. The protocol is optimized for low viral RNA levels and is readily adaptable for other applications. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Li et al. (2021).


Subject(s)
Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Immunoprecipitation/methods , Sequence Analysis, RNA/methods , Adenosine/analysis , Adenosine/genetics , Animals , COVID-19/genetics , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Gene Expression/genetics , Gene Expression Regulation/genetics , Genetic Techniques , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Methylation , RNA/chemistry , RNA/genetics , RNA Processing, Post-Transcriptional , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells
2.
Mol Med ; 27(1): 161, 2021 12 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1582119

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Similarities in the hijacking mechanisms used by SARS-CoV-2 and several types of cancer, suggest the repurposing of cancer drugs to treat Covid-19. CK2 kinase antagonists have been proposed for cancer treatment. A recent study in cells infected with SARS-CoV-2 found a significant CK2 kinase activity, and the use of a CK2 inhibitor showed antiviral responses. CIGB-300, originally designed as an anticancer peptide, is an antagonist of CK2 kinase activity that binds to the CK2 phospho-acceptor sites. Recent preliminary results show the antiviral activity of CIGB-300 using a surrogate model of coronavirus. Here we present a computational biology study that provides evidence, at the molecular level, of how CIGB-300 may interfere with the SARS-CoV-2 life cycle within infected human cells. METHODS: Sequence analyses and data from phosphorylation studies were combined to predict infection-induced molecular mechanisms that can be interfered by CIGB-300. Next, we integrated data from multi-omics studies and data focusing on the antagonistic effect on the CK2 kinase activity of CIGB-300. A combination of network and functional enrichment analyses was used. RESULTS: Firstly, from the SARS-CoV studies, we inferred the potential incidence of CIGB-300 in SARS-CoV-2 interference on the immune response. Afterwards, from the analysis of multiple omics data, we proposed the action of CIGB-300 from the early stages of viral infections perturbing the virus hijacking of RNA splicing machinery. We also predicted the interference of CIGB-300 in virus-host interactions that are responsible for the high infectivity and the particular immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Furthermore, we provided evidence of how CIGB-300 may participate in the attenuation of phenotypes related to muscle, bleeding, coagulation and respiratory disorders. CONCLUSIONS: Our computational analysis proposes putative molecular mechanisms that support the antiviral activity of CIGB-300.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Computational Biology/methods , Animals , COVID-19/drug therapy , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Humans , Nuclear Pore Complex Proteins/therapeutic use , Peptides, Cyclic/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells
3.
Nutrients ; 13(2)2021 Jan 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1575478

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is a newly emerging virus that currently lacks curative treatments. Lactoferrin (LF) is a naturally occurring non-toxic glycoprotein with broad-spectrum antiviral, immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory effects. In this study, we assessed the potential of LF in the prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro. Antiviral immune response gene expression was analyzed by qRT-PCR in uninfected Caco-2 intestinal epithelial cells treated with LF. An infection assay for SARS-CoV-2 was performed in Caco-2 cells treated or not with LF. SARS-CoV-2 titer was determined by qRT-PCR, plaque assay and immunostaining. Inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokine production was determined by qRT-PCR. LF significantly induced the expression of IFNA1, IFNB1, TLR3, TLR7, IRF3, IRF7 and MAVS genes. Furthermore, LF partially inhibited SARS-CoV-2 infection and replication in Caco-2 intestinal epithelial cells. Our in vitro data support LF as an immune modulator of the antiviral immune response with moderate effects against SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19 , Gene Expression Regulation , Immunity, Innate/drug effects , Lactoferrin/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Animals , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Gene Expression Regulation/drug effects , Gene Expression Regulation/immunology , Humans , Vero Cells
4.
Molecules ; 26(21)2021 Nov 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1512511

ABSTRACT

This work describes an untargeted analytical approach for the screening, identification, and characterization of the trans-epithelial transport of green tea (Camellia sinensis) catechin extracts with in vitro inhibitory effect against the SARS-CoV-2 papain-like protease (PLpro) activity. After specific catechin extraction, a chromatographic separation obtained six fractions were carried out. The fractions were assessed in vitro against the PLpro target. Fraction 5 showed the highest inhibitory activity against the SARS-CoV-2 PLpro (IC50 of 0.125 µg mL-1). The untargeted characterization revealed that (-)-epicatechin-3-gallate (ECG) was the most abundant compound in the fraction and the primary molecule absorbed by differentiated Caco-2 cells. Results indicated that fraction 5 was approximately 10 times more active than ECG (IC50 value equal to 11.62 ± 0.47 µg mL-1) to inhibit the PLpro target. Overall, our findings highlight the synergistic effects of the various components of the crude extract compared to isolated ECG.


Subject(s)
Catechin/pharmacology , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Tea/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/metabolism , Caco-2 Cells , Camellia sinensis/metabolism , Catechin/analogs & derivatives , Catechin/chemistry , Catechin/metabolism , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/drug effects , Epithelium/drug effects , Epithelium/metabolism , Humans , Mass Spectrometry/methods , Plant Extracts/chemistry , Plant Extracts/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Tea/chemistry , Tea/physiology
5.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 21725, 2021 11 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504567

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 enters the intestine by the spike protein binding to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptors in enterocyte apical membranes, leading to diarrhea in some patients. Early treatment of COVID-19-associated diarrhea could relieve symptoms and limit viral spread within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Diosmectite, an aluminomagnesium silicate adsorbent clay with antidiarrheal effects, is recommended in some COVID-19 management protocols. In rotavirus models, diosmectite prevents pathogenic effects by binding the virus and its enterotoxin. We tested the trapping and anti-inflammatory properties of diosmectite in a SARS-CoV-2 model. Trapping effects were tested in Caco-2 cells using spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) and heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 preparations. Trapping was assessed by immunofluorescence, alone or in the presence of cells. The effect of diosmectite on nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) activation and CXCL10 secretion induced by the spike protein RBD and heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 were analyzed by Western blot and ELISA, respectively. Diosmectite bound the spike protein RBD and SARS-CoV-2 preparation, and inhibited interaction of the spike protein RBD with ACE2 receptors on the Caco-2 cell surface. Diosmectite exposure also inhibited NF-kappaB activation and CXCL10 secretion. These data provide direct evidence that diosmectite can bind SARS-CoV-2 components and inhibit downstream inflammation, supporting a mechanistic rationale for consideration of diosmectite as a management option for COVID-19-associated diarrhea.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Chemokine CXCL10/metabolism , NF-kappa B p50 Subunit/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Silicates/chemistry , Adsorption , Aluminum Compounds/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Anti-Inflammatory Agents , Binding Sites , Caco-2 Cells , Chromatography, Liquid , Clay , Diarrhea/etiology , Diarrhea/therapy , Enterocytes/metabolism , Gastroenterology , Humans , Magnesium Compounds/chemistry , Mass Spectrometry , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Binding/drug effects , Protein Domains , Rotavirus , Silicates/metabolism
6.
Mol Syst Biol ; 17(11): e10260, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488874

ABSTRACT

Tremendous progress has been made to control the COVID-19 pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. However, effective therapeutic options are still rare. Drug repurposing and combination represent practical strategies to address this urgent unmet medical need. Viruses, including coronaviruses, are known to hijack host metabolism to facilitate viral proliferation, making targeting host metabolism a promising antiviral approach. Here, we describe an integrated analysis of 12 published in vitro and human patient gene expression datasets on SARS-CoV-2 infection using genome-scale metabolic modeling (GEM), revealing complicated host metabolism reprogramming during SARS-CoV-2 infection. We next applied the GEM-based metabolic transformation algorithm to predict anti-SARS-CoV-2 targets that counteract the virus-induced metabolic changes. We successfully validated these targets using published drug and genetic screen data and by performing an siRNA assay in Caco-2 cells. Further generating and analyzing RNA-sequencing data of remdesivir-treated Vero E6 cell samples, we predicted metabolic targets acting in combination with remdesivir, an approved anti-SARS-CoV-2 drug. Our study provides clinical data-supported candidate anti-SARS-CoV-2 targets for future evaluation, demonstrating host metabolism targeting as a promising antiviral strategy.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/metabolism , Metabolic Networks and Pathways/genetics , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/therapeutic use , Animals , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Datasets as Topic , Drug Development , Drug Repositioning , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , RNA, Small Interfering , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Vero Cells
7.
Curr Issues Mol Biol ; 43(3): 1212-1225, 2021 Sep 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1438531

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is the cause of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Most SARS-CoV-2 infections are mild or even asymptomatic. However, a small fraction of infected individuals develops severe, life-threatening disease, which is caused by an uncontrolled immune response resulting in hyperinflammation. However, the factors predisposing individuals to severe disease remain poorly understood. Here, we show that levels of CD47, which is known to mediate immune escape in cancer and virus-infected cells, are elevated in SARS-CoV-2-infected Caco-2 cells, Calu-3 cells, and air-liquid interface cultures of primary human bronchial epithelial cells. Moreover, SARS-CoV-2 infection increases SIRPalpha levels, the binding partner of CD47, on primary human monocytes. Systematic literature searches further indicated that known risk factors such as older age and diabetes are associated with increased CD47 levels. High CD47 levels contribute to vascular disease, vasoconstriction, and hypertension, conditions that may predispose SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals to COVID-19-related complications such as pulmonary hypertension, lung fibrosis, myocardial injury, stroke, and acute kidney injury. Hence, age-related and virus-induced CD47 expression is a candidate mechanism potentially contributing to severe COVID-19, as well as a therapeutic target, which may be addressed by antibodies and small molecules. Further research will be needed to investigate the potential involvement of CD47 and SIRPalpha in COVID-19 pathology. Our data should encourage other research groups to consider the potential relevance of the CD47/ SIRPalpha axis in their COVID-19 research.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Differentiation/metabolism , CD47 Antigen/metabolism , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/metabolism , Pandemics , Receptors, Immunologic/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Severity of Illness Index , Signal Transduction/immunology , Blood Donors , Blotting, Western/methods , Bronchi/cytology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Caco-2 Cells , Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Epithelial Cells/virology , Healthy Volunteers , Humans , Monocytes/metabolism , Monocytes/virology , Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
8.
mBio ; 12(5): e0233521, 2021 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1430167

ABSTRACT

Newly emerged severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) caused a global pandemic with astonishing mortality and morbidity. The high replication and transmission of SARS-CoV-2 are remarkably distinct from those of previous closely related coronaviruses, and the underlying molecular mechanisms remain unclear. The innate immune defense is a physical barrier that restricts viral replication. We report here that the SARS-CoV-2 Nsp5 main protease targets RIG-I and mitochondrial antiviral signaling (MAVS) protein via two distinct mechanisms for inhibition. Specifically, Nsp5 cleaves off the 10 most-N-terminal amino acids from RIG-I and deprives it of the ability to activate MAVS, whereas Nsp5 promotes the ubiquitination and proteosome-mediated degradation of MAVS. As such, Nsp5 potently inhibits interferon (IFN) induction by double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) in an enzyme-dependent manner. A synthetic small-molecule inhibitor blunts the Nsp5-mediated destruction of cellular RIG-I and MAVS and processing of SARS-CoV-2 nonstructural proteins, thus restoring the innate immune response and impeding SARS-CoV-2 replication. This work offers new insight into the immune evasion strategy of SARS-CoV-2 and provides a potential antiviral agent to treat CoV disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients. IMPORTANCE The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is caused by SARS-CoV-2, which is rapidly evolving with better transmissibility. Understanding the molecular basis of the SARS-CoV-2 interaction with host cells is of paramount significance, and development of antiviral agents provides new avenues to prevent and treat COVID-19 diseases. This study describes a molecular characterization of innate immune evasion mediated by the SARS-CoV-2 Nsp5 main protease and subsequent development of a small-molecule inhibitor.


Subject(s)
Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , DEAD Box Protein 58/metabolism , Receptors, Immunologic/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , A549 Cells , Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing/genetics , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , DEAD Box Protein 58/genetics , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , HCT116 Cells , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunity, Innate/genetics , Immunity, Innate/physiology , Immunoblotting , Interferon Type I/metabolism , Mice , Receptors, Immunologic/genetics , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Signal Transduction/genetics , Signal Transduction/physiology , Ubiquitination , Virus Replication/genetics , Virus Replication/physiology
9.
Antimicrob Agents Chemother ; 65(10): e0115521, 2021 09 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1416580

ABSTRACT

Remdesivir (RDV; GS-5734) is currently the only FDA-approved antiviral drug for the treatment of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. The drug is approved for use in adults or children 12 years or older who are hospitalized for the treatment of COVID-19 on the basis of an acceleration of clinical recovery for inpatients with this disease. Unfortunately, the drug must be administered intravenously, restricting its use to those requiring hospitalization for relatively advanced disease. RDV is also unstable in plasma and has a complex activation pathway which may contribute to its highly variable antiviral efficacy in SARS-CoV-2-infected cells. Potent orally bioavailable antiviral drugs for early treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infection are urgently needed, and several, including molnupiravir and PF-07321332, are currently in clinical development. We focused on making simple, orally bioavailable lipid analogs of remdesivir nucleoside (RVn; GS-441524) that are processed to RVn monophosphate, the precursor of the active RVn triphosphate, by a single-step intracellular cleavage. In addition to high oral bioavailability, stability in plasma, and simpler metabolic activation, new oral lipid prodrugs of RVn had submicromolar anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity in a variety of cell types, including Vero E6, Calu-3, Caco-2, human pluripotent stem cell (PSC)-derived lung cells, and Huh7.5 cells. In Syrian hamsters, oral treatment with 1-O-octadecyl-2-O-benzyl-glycero-3-phosphate RVn (ODBG-P-RVn) was well tolerated and achieved therapeutic levels in plasma above the 90% effective concentration (EC90) for SARS-CoV-2. The results suggest further evaluation as an early oral treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infection to minimize severe disease and reduce hospitalizations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Prodrugs , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Caco-2 Cells , Cricetinae , Humans , Lipids , SARS-CoV-2
10.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 6(1): 331, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392811

ABSTRACT

The recently emerged severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which is the causative agent of ongoing global pandemic of COVID-19, may trigger immunosuppression in the early stage and overactive immune response in the late stage of infection; However, the underlying mechanisms are not well understood. Here we demonstrated that the SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid (N) protein dually regulated innate immune responses, i.e., the low-dose N protein suppressed type I interferon (IFN-I) signaling and inflammatory cytokines, whereas high-dose N protein promoted IFN-I signaling and inflammatory cytokines. Mechanistically, the SARS-CoV-2 N protein dually regulated the phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of IRF3, STAT1, and STAT2. Additionally, low-dose N protein combined with TRIM25 could suppress the ubiquitination and activation of retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I). Our findings revealed a regulatory mechanism of innate immune responses by the SARS-CoV-2 N protein, which would contribute to understanding the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 and other SARS-like coronaviruses, and development of more effective strategies for controlling COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Immunity, Innate , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Signal Transduction/immunology , A549 Cells , COVID-19/pathology , Caco-2 Cells , HEK293 Cells , Hep G2 Cells , Humans , Interferon Type I/immunology , Phosphoproteins/immunology
11.
J Gen Virol ; 102(4)2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1393559

ABSTRACT

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are chemically active species which are involved in maintaining cellular and signalling processes at physiological concentrations. Therefore, cellular components that regulate redox balance are likely to play a crucial role in viral life-cycle either as promoters of viral replication or with antiviral functions. Zinc is an essential micronutrient associated with anti-oxidative systems and helps in maintaining a balanced cellular redox state. Here, we show that zinc chelation leads to induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in epithelial cells and addition of zinc restores ROS levels to basal state. Addition of ROS (H2O2) inhibited dengue virus (DENV) infection in a dose-dependent manner indicating that oxidative stress has adverse effects on DENV infection. ROS affects early stages of DENV replication as observed by quantitation of positive and negative strand viral RNA. We observed that addition of ROS specifically affected viral titres of positive strand RNA viruses. We further demonstrate that ROS specifically altered SEC31A expression at the ER suggesting a role for SEC31A-mediated pathways in the life-cycle of positive strand RNA viruses and provides an opportunity to identify drug targets regulating oxidative stress responses for antiviral development.


Subject(s)
Dengue Virus/drug effects , Hydrogen Peroxide/pharmacology , Reactive Oxygen Species/pharmacology , Virus Replication , Zinc/pharmacology , Adolescent , Aedes , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Child , Child, Preschool , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cricetinae , Dengue/virology , Dengue Virus/physiology , Humans , Oxidative Stress , RNA, Viral
12.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 134, 2021 01 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387323

ABSTRACT

Understanding the factors that contribute to efficient SARS-CoV-2 infection of human cells may provide insights on SARS-CoV-2 transmissibility and pathogenesis, and reveal targets of intervention. Here, we analyze host and viral determinants essential for efficient SARS-CoV-2 infection in both human lung epithelial cells and ex vivo human lung tissues. We identify heparan sulfate as an important attachment factor for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Next, we show that sialic acids present on ACE2 prevent efficient spike/ACE2-interaction. While SARS-CoV infection is substantially limited by the sialic acid-mediated restriction in both human lung epithelial cells and ex vivo human lung tissues, infection by SARS-CoV-2 is limited to a lesser extent. We further demonstrate that the furin-like cleavage site in SARS-CoV-2 spike is required for efficient virus replication in human lung but not intestinal tissues. These findings provide insights on the efficient SARS-CoV-2 infection of human lungs.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/transmission , Sialic Acids/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Attachment , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cricetinae , Furin/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Heparitin Sulfate/metabolism , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa/metabolism , Intestines/virology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/pathology , Vero Cells , Virus Internalization , Virus Replication/physiology
14.
World J Gastroenterol ; 27(32): 5404-5423, 2021 Aug 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1379993

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Intestinal barrier breakdown, a frequent complication of intestinal ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) including dysfunction and the structure changes of the intestine, is characterized by a loss of tight junction and enhanced permeability of the intestinal barrier and increased mortality. To develop effective and novel therapeutics is important for the improvement of outcome of patients with intestinal barrier deterioration. Recombinant human angiopoietin-like protein 4 (rhANGPTL4) is reported to protect the blood-brain barrier when administered exogenously, and endogenous ANGPTL4 deficiency deteriorates radiation-induced intestinal injury. AIM: To identify whether rhANGPTL4 may protect intestinal barrier breakdown induced by I/R. METHODS: Intestinal I/R injury was elicited through clamping the superior mesenteric artery for 60 min followed by 240 min reperfusion. Intestinal epithelial (Caco-2) cells and human umbilical vein endothelial cells were challenged by hypoxia/ reoxygenation to mimic I/R in vitro. RESULTS: Indicators including fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated dextran (4 kilodaltons; FD-4) clearance, ratio of phosphorylated myosin light chain/total myosin light chain, myosin light chain kinase and loss of zonula occludens-1, claudin-2 and VE-cadherin were significantly increased after intestinal I/R or cell hypoxia/reoxygenation. rhANGPTL4 treatment significantly reversed these indicators, which were associated with inhibiting the inflammatory and oxidative cascade, excessive activation of cellular autophagy and apoptosis and improvement of survival rate. Similar results were observed in vitro when cells were challenged by hypoxia/reoxygenation, whereas rhANGPTL4 reversed the indicators close to normal level in Caco-2 cells and human umbilical vein endothelial cells significantly. CONCLUSION: rhANGPTL4 can function as a protective agent against intestinal injury induced by intestinal I/R and improve survival via maintenance of intestinal barrier structure and functions.


Subject(s)
/pharmacology , Intestines , Reperfusion Injury , Caco-2 Cells , Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa , Recombinant Proteins/pharmacology , Reperfusion Injury/prevention & control
15.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(36)2021 09 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1366851

ABSTRACT

The global spread of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), and the associated disease COVID-19, requires therapeutic interventions that can be rapidly identified and translated to clinical care. Traditional drug discovery methods have a >90% failure rate and can take 10 to 15 y from target identification to clinical use. In contrast, drug repurposing can significantly accelerate translation. We developed a quantitative high-throughput screen to identify efficacious agents against SARS-CoV-2. From a library of 1,425 US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved compounds and clinical candidates, we identified 17 hits that inhibited SARS-CoV-2 infection and analyzed their antiviral activity across multiple cell lines, including lymph node carcinoma of the prostate (LNCaP) cells and a physiologically relevant model of alveolar epithelial type 2 cells (iAEC2s). Additionally, we found that inhibitors of the Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK signaling pathway exacerbate SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro. Notably, we discovered that lactoferrin, a glycoprotein found in secretory fluids including mammalian milk, inhibits SARS-CoV-2 infection in the nanomolar range in all cell models with multiple modes of action, including blockage of virus attachment to cellular heparan sulfate and enhancement of interferon responses. Given its safety profile, lactoferrin is a readily translatable therapeutic option for the management of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Lactoferrin/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Virus Replication/drug effects , Animals , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dose-Response Relationship, Drug , Drug Discovery , Drug Repositioning/methods , Epithelial Cells , Heparitin Sulfate/antagonists & inhibitors , Heparitin Sulfate/immunology , Heparitin Sulfate/metabolism , Hepatocytes , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells
16.
Gut Microbes ; 13(1): 1961970, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1348030

ABSTRACT

The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is causing the ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which primarily manifests with respiratory distress and may also lead to symptoms associated with the gastrointestinal tract. Probiotics are living microorganisms that have been shown to confer immune benefits. In this study, we investigated the immunomodulatory effects and anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity of three different Lacticaseibacillus probiotic strains, either alone or in combination with lactoferrin, using the intestinal epithelial Caco-2 cell line. Our results revealed that the Lacticaseibacillus paracasei DG strain significantly induced the expression of genes involved in protective antiviral immunity and prevented the expression of proinflammatory genes triggered by SARS-CoV-2 infection. Moreover, L. paracasei DG significantly inhibited SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro. L. paracasei DG also positively affected the antiviral immune activity of lactoferrin and significantly augmented its anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity in Caco-2 intestinal epithelial cells. Overall, our work shows that the probiotic strain L. paracasei DG is a promising candidate that exhibits prophylactic potential against SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Lactobacillus/physiology , Lactoferrin/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Caco-2 Cells , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control
17.
J Biol Chem ; 297(2): 100925, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1336599

ABSTRACT

Apart from prevention using vaccinations, the management options for COVID-19 remain limited. In retrospective cohort studies, use of famotidine, a specific oral H2 receptor antagonist (antihistamine), has been associated with reduced risk of intubation and death in patients hospitalized with COVID-19. In a case series, nonhospitalized patients with COVID-19 experienced rapid symptom resolution after taking famotidine, but the molecular basis of these observations remains elusive. Here we show using biochemical, cellular, and functional assays that famotidine has no effect on viral replication or viral protease activity. However, famotidine can affect histamine-induced signaling processes in infected Caco2 cells. Specifically, famotidine treatment inhibits histamine-induced expression of Toll-like receptor 3 (TLR3) in SARS-CoV-2 infected cells and can reduce TLR3-dependent signaling processes that culminate in activation of IRF3 and the NF-κB pathway, subsequently controlling antiviral and inflammatory responses. SARS-CoV-2-infected cells treated with famotidine demonstrate reduced expression levels of the inflammatory mediators CCL-2 and IL6, drivers of the cytokine release syndrome that precipitates poor outcome for patients with COVID-19. Given that pharmacokinetic studies indicate that famotidine can reach concentrations in blood that suffice to antagonize histamine H2 receptors expressed in mast cells, neutrophils, and eosinophils, these observations explain how famotidine may contribute to the reduced histamine-induced inflammation and cytokine release, thereby improving the outcome for patients with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Famotidine/pharmacology , Histamine Antagonists/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Toll-Like Receptor 3/metabolism , A549 Cells , Binding Sites , Caco-2 Cells , Chemokine CCL2/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , HeLa Cells , Humans , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/metabolism , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Molecular Docking Simulation , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Signal Transduction , Toll-Like Receptor 3/chemistry , Virus Replication
18.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 6(1): 288, 2021 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333906

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic poses a global threat to public health and economy. The continuously emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants present a major challenge to the development of antiviral agents and vaccines. In this study, we identified that EK1 and cholesterol-coupled derivative of EK1, EK1C4, as pan-CoV fusion inhibitors, exhibit potent antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2 infection in both lung- and intestine-derived cell lines (Calu-3 and Caco2, respectively). They are also effective against infection of pseudotyped SARS-CoV-2 variants B.1.1.7 (Alpha) and B.1.1.248 (Gamma) as well as those with mutations in S protein, including N417T, E484K, N501Y, and D614G, which are common in South African and Brazilian variants. Crystal structure revealed that EK1 targets the HR1 domain in the SARS-CoV-2 S protein to block virus-cell fusion and provide mechanistic insights into its broad and effective antiviral activity. Nasal administration of EK1 peptides to hACE2 transgenic mice significantly reduced viral titers in lung and intestinal tissues. EK1 showed good safety profiles in various animal models, supporting further clinical development of EK1-based pan-CoV fusion inhibitors against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents , COVID-19/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Caco-2 Cells , Crystallography, X-Ray , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Humans , Mice, Transgenic , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
19.
Biomolecules ; 11(8)2021 07 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1334992

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection of host cells is driven by binding of the SARS-CoV-2 spike-(S)-protein to lung type II pneumocytes, followed by virus replication. Surfactant protein SP-D, member of the front-line immune defense of the lungs, binds glycosylated structures on invading pathogens such as viruses to induce their clearance from the lungs. The objective of this study is to measure the pulmonary SP-D levels in COVID-19 patients and demonstrate the activity of SP-D against SARS-CoV-2, opening the possibility of using SP-D as potential therapy for COVID-19 patients. Pulmonary SP-D concentrations were measured in bronchoalveolar lavage samples from patients with corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) by anti-SP-D ELISA. Binding assays were performed by ELISAs. Protein bridge and aggregation assays were performed by gel electrophoresis followed by silver staining and band densitometry. Viral replication was evaluated in vitro using epithelial Caco-2 cells. Results indicate that COVID-19 patients (n = 12) show decreased pulmonary levels of SP-D (median = 68.9 ng/mL) when compared to levels reported for healthy controls in literature. Binding assays demonstrate that SP-D binds the SARS-CoV-2 glycosylated spike-(S)-protein of different emerging clinical variants. Binding induces the formation of protein bridges, the critical step of viral aggregation to facilitate its clearance. SP-D inhibits SARS-CoV-2 replication in Caco-2 cells (EC90 = 3.7 µg/mL). Therefore, SP-D recognizes and binds to the spike-(S)-protein of SARS-CoV-2 in vitro, initiates the aggregation, and inhibits viral replication in cells. Combined with the low levels of SP-D observed in COVID-19 patients, these results suggest that SP-D is important in the immune response to SARS-CoV-2 and that rhSP-D supplementation has the potential to be a novel class of anti-viral that will target SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Pulmonary Surfactant-Associated Protein D/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Caco-2 Cells , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Protein Binding , Pulmonary Surfactant-Associated Protein D/genetics , Pulmonary Surfactant-Associated Protein D/pharmacology , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , Recombinant Proteins/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Virus Replication
20.
Cell Rep ; 36(5): 109479, 2021 08 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1328702

ABSTRACT

Coronaviruses rely on host membranes for entry, establishment of replication centers, and egress. Compounds targeting cellular membrane biology and lipid biosynthetic pathways have previously shown promise as antivirals and are actively being pursued as treatments for other conditions. Here, we test small molecule inhibitors that target the PI3 kinase VPS34 or fatty acid metabolism for anti-severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) activity. Our studies determine that compounds targeting VPS34 are potent SARS-CoV-2 inhibitors. Mechanistic studies with compounds targeting multiple steps up- and downstream of fatty acid synthase (FASN) identify the importance of triacylglycerol production and protein palmitoylation as requirements for efficient viral RNA synthesis and infectious virus production. Further, FASN knockout results in significantly impaired SARS-CoV-2 replication that can be rescued with fatty acid supplementation. Together, these studies clarify roles for VPS34 and fatty acid metabolism in SARS-CoV-2 replication and identify promising avenues for the development of countermeasures against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/virology , Class III Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases/antagonists & inhibitors , Lipid Metabolism/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Virus Replication/drug effects , Aminopyridines/pharmacology , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Class III Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases/metabolism , Fatty Acid Synthases/drug effects , Fatty Acid Synthases/genetics , Gene Knockout Techniques , Humans , Lipoylation/drug effects , Pyrimidines/pharmacology , RNA, Viral/metabolism , Triglycerides/metabolism , Vero Cells
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