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1.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 717, 2022 01 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621280

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is currently a big concern around the world. Recent reports show that the disease severity and mortality of COVID-19 infected patients may vary from gender to gender with a very high risk of death for seniors. In addition, some steroid structures have been reported to affect coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, function and activity. The entry of SARS-CoV-2 into host cells depends on the binding of coronavirus spike protein to angiotensin converting enzyme-2 (ACE2). Viral main protease is essential for the replication of SARS-CoV-2. It was hypothesized that steroid molecules (e.g., estradiol, progesterone, testosterone, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, prednisone and calcitriol) could occupy the active site of the protease and could alter the interaction of spike protein with ACE2. Computational data showed that estradiol interacted more strongly with the main protease active site. In the presence of calcitriol, the binding energy of the spike protein to ACE2 was increased, and transferring Apo to Locked S conformer of spike trimer was facilitated. Together, the interaction between spike protein and ACE2 can be disrupted by calcitriol. Potential use of estradiol and calcitriol to reduce virus invasion and replication needs clinical investigation.


Subject(s)
Calcitriol/pharmacology , Estradiol/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain/drug effects , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Binding/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Internalization/drug effects
2.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 14(1): 191-200, 2022 Jan 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1616941

ABSTRACT

At present, the most powerful new drugs for COVID-19 are antibody proteins. In addition, there are some star small molecule drugs. However, there are few studies on nanomaterials. Here, we study the intact graphene (IG), defective graphene (DG), and graphene oxide (GO) interacting with COVID-19 protein. We find that they show progressive inhibition of COVID-19 protein. By using molecular dynamics simulations, we study the interactions between SARS-CoV-2 3CL Mpro and graphene-related materials (GRMs): IG, DG, and GO. The results show that Mpro can be absorbed onto the surfaces of investigated materials. DG and GO interacted with Mpro more intensely, causing the decisive part of Mpro to become more flexible. Further analysis shows that compared to IG and GO, DG can inactivate Mpro and inhibit its expression effectively by destroying the active pocket of Mpro. Our work not only provides detailed and reliable theoretical guidance for the application of GRMs in treating with SARS-CoV-2 but also helps in developing new graphene-based anti-COVID-19 materials.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Graphite/chemistry , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Adsorption , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Graphite/metabolism , Humans , Ligands , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
3.
Molecules ; 27(1)2021 Dec 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580564

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused millions of fatalities since 2019. Despite the availability of vaccines for this disease, new strains are causing rapid ailment and are a continuous threat to vaccine efficacy. Here, molecular docking and simulations identify strong inhibitors of the allosteric site of the SARS-CoV-2 virus RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). More than one hundred different flavonoids were docked with the SARS-CoV-2 RdRp allosteric site through computational screening. The three top hits were Naringoside, Myricetin and Aureusidin 4,6-diglucoside. Simulation analyses confirmed that they are in constant contact during the simulation time course and have strong association with the enzyme's allosteric site. Absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and toxicity (ADMET) data provided medicinal information of these top three hits. They had good human intestinal absorption (HIA) concentrations and were non-toxic. Due to high mutation rates in the active sites of the viral enzyme, these new allosteric site inhibitors offer opportunities to drug SARS-CoV-2 RdRp. These results provide new information for the design of novel allosteric inhibitors against SARS-CoV-2 RdRp.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Computational Biology/methods , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Flavonoids/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Allosteric Site , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Drug Design , Humans , Intestinal Absorption , Molecular Docking Simulation
4.
J Am Soc Nephrol ; 32(1): 41-51, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1496668

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Mutations in PKD1 and PKD2, which encode the transmembrane proteins polycystin-1 and polycystin-2, respectively, cause autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). Polycystins are expressed in the primary cilium, and disrupting cilia structure significantly slows ADPKD progression following inactivation of polycystins. The cellular mechanisms of polycystin- and cilia-dependent cyst progression in ADPKD remain incompletely understood. METHODS: Unbiased transcriptional profiling in an adult-onset Pkd2 mouse model before cysts formed revealed significant differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in Pkd2 single-knockout kidneys, which were used to identify candidate pathways dysregulated in kidneys destined to form cysts. In vivo studies validated the role of the candidate pathway in the progression of ADPKD. Wild-type and Pkd2/Ift88 double-knockout mice that are protected from cyst growth served as controls. RESULTS: The RNASeq data identified cell proliferation as the most dysregulated pathway, with 15 of 241 DEGs related to cell cycle functions. Cdk1 appeared as a central component in this analysis. Cdk1 expression was similarly dysregulated in Pkd1 models of ADPKD, and conditional inactivation of Cdk1 with Pkd1 markedly improved the cystic phenotype and kidney function compared with inactivation of Pkd1 alone. The Pkd1/Cdk1 double knockout blocked cyst cell proliferation that otherwise accompanied Pkd1 inactivation alone. CONCLUSIONS: Dysregulation of Cdk1 is an early driver of cyst cell proliferation in ADPKD due to Pkd1 inactivation. Selective targeting of cyst cell proliferation is an effective means of slowing ADPKD progression caused by inactivation of Pkd1.


Subject(s)
CDC2 Protein Kinase/metabolism , Polycystic Kidney, Autosomal Dominant/genetics , Polycystic Kidney, Autosomal Dominant/metabolism , TRPP Cation Channels/metabolism , Animals , Apoptosis , CDC2 Protein Kinase/genetics , Catalytic Domain , Cell Proliferation , Crosses, Genetic , DNA Replication , Female , Gene Expression Profiling , Gene Expression Regulation , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Mutation , Phenotype , Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Acetyl-Transferring Kinase/genetics , RNA-Seq , TRPP Cation Channels/genetics , Transcription, Genetic , Whole Exome Sequencing
5.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(21)2021 Oct 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488616

ABSTRACT

After almost two years from its first evidence, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to afflict people worldwide, highlighting the need for multiple antiviral strategies. SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro/3CLpro) is a recognized promising target for the development of effective drugs. Because single target inhibition might not be sufficient to block SARS-CoV-2 infection and replication, multi enzymatic-based therapies may provide a better strategy. Here we present a structural and biochemical characterization of the binding mode of MG-132 to both the main protease of SARS-CoV-2, and to the human Cathepsin-L, suggesting thus an interesting scaffold for the development of double-inhibitors. X-ray diffraction data show that MG-132 well fits into the Mpro active site, forming a covalent bond with Cys145 independently from reducing agents and crystallization conditions. Docking of MG-132 into Cathepsin-L well-matches with a covalent binding to the catalytic cysteine. Accordingly, MG-132 inhibits Cathepsin-L with nanomolar potency and reversibly inhibits Mpro with micromolar potency, but with a prolonged residency time. We compared the apo and MG-132-inhibited structures of Mpro solved in different space groups and we identified a new apo structure that features several similarities with the inhibited ones, offering interesting perspectives for future drug design and in silico efforts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Cathepsin L/drug effects , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/drug effects , Leupeptins/chemistry , Leupeptins/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Catalytic Domain/drug effects , Cathepsin L/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Drug Design , Drug Discovery , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Peptidomimetics , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Virus Replication/drug effects , X-Ray Diffraction
6.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(20)2021 Oct 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470891

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2, or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, represents a new pathogen from the family of Coronaviridae that caused a global pandemic of COVID-19 disease. In the absence of effective antiviral drugs, research of novel therapeutic targets such as SARS-CoV-2 RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) becomes essential. This viral protein is without a human counterpart and thus represents a unique prospective drug target. However, in vitro biological evaluation testing on RdRp remains difficult and is not widely available. Therefore, we prepared a database of commercial small-molecule compounds and performed an in silico high-throughput virtual screening on the active site of the SARS-CoV-2 RdRp using ensemble docking. We identified a novel thioether-amide or guanidine-linker class of potential RdRp inhibitors and calculated favorable binding free energies of representative hits by molecular dynamics simulations coupled with Linear Interaction Energy calculations. This innovative procedure maximized the respective phase-space sampling and yielded non-covalent inhibitors representing small optimizable molecules that are synthetically readily accessible, commercially available as well as suitable for further biological evaluation and mode of action studies.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Enzyme Inhibitors/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Amides/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Databases, Chemical , Drug Design , Enzyme Inhibitors/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Guanidine/chemistry , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Structure-Activity Relationship , Sulfides/chemistry , Thermodynamics , Viral Proteins/metabolism
7.
Molecules ; 26(19)2021 Oct 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463766

ABSTRACT

Commensal bacterium Clostridium paraputrificum J4 produces several extracellular chitinolytic enzymes including a 62 kDa chitinase Chit62J4 active toward 4-nitrophenyl N,N'-diacetyl-ß-d-chitobioside (pNGG). We characterized the crude enzyme from bacterial culture fluid, recombinant enzyme rChit62J4, and its catalytic domain rChit62J4cat. This major chitinase, securing nutrition of the bacterium in the human intestinal tract when supplied with chitin, has a pH optimum of 5.5 and processes pNGG with Km = 0.24 mM and kcat = 30.0 s-1. Sequence comparison of the amino acid sequence of Chit62J4, determined during bacterial genome sequencing, characterizes the enzyme as a family 18 glycosyl hydrolase with a four-domain structure. The catalytic domain has the typical TIM barrel structure and the accessory domains-2x Fn3/Big3 and a carbohydrate binding module-that likely supports enzyme activity on chitin fibers. The catalytic domain is highly homologous to a single-domain chitinase of Bacillus cereus NCTU2. However, the catalytic profiles significantly differ between the two enzymes despite almost identical catalytic sites. The shift of pI and pH optimum of the commensal enzyme toward acidic values compared to the soil bacterium is the likely environmental adaptation that provides C. paraputrificum J4 a competitive advantage over other commensal bacteria.


Subject(s)
Bacterial Proteins/metabolism , Chitin/metabolism , Chitinases/metabolism , Clostridium/metabolism , Bacterial Proteins/genetics , Catalytic Domain , Chitinases/chemistry , Chitinases/genetics , Clostridium/growth & development , Clostridium/isolation & purification , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Humans , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism
8.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(18)2021 Sep 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1409705

ABSTRACT

The inhibition mechanism of the main protease (Mpro) of SARS-CoV-2 by ebselen (EBS) and its analog with a hydroxyl group at position 2 of the benzisoselenazol-3(2H)-one ring (EBS-OH) was studied by using a density functional level of theory. Preliminary molecular dynamics simulations on the apo form of Mpro were performed taking into account both the hydrogen donor and acceptor natures of the Nδ and Nε of His41, a member of the catalytic dyad. The potential energy surfaces for the formation of the Se-S covalent bond mediated by EBS and EBS-OH on Mpro are discussed in detail. The EBS-OH shows a distinctive behavior with respect to EBS in the formation of the noncovalent complex. Due to the presence of canonical H-bonds and noncanonical ones involving less electronegative atoms, such as sulfur and selenium, the influence on the energy barriers and reaction energy of the Minnesota hybrid meta-GGA functionals M06, M06-2X and M08HX, and the more recent range-separated hybrid functional wB97X were also considered. The knowledge of the inhibition mechanism of Mpro by the small protease inhibitors EBS or EBS-OH can enlarge the possibilities for designing more potent and selective inhibitor-based drugs to be used in combination with other antiviral therapies.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Isoindoles/pharmacology , Organoselenium Compounds/pharmacology , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites/drug effects , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain/drug effects , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Drug Design , Humans , Isoindoles/chemistry , Isoindoles/therapeutic use , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Organoselenium Compounds/chemistry , Organoselenium Compounds/therapeutic use , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , Protease Inhibitors/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism
9.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(18)2021 Sep 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1409703

ABSTRACT

Recently, inhibitors of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) main protease (Mpro) have been proposed as potential therapeutic agents for COVID-19. Studying effects of amino acid mutations in the conformation of drug targets is necessary for anticipating drug resistance. In this study, with the structure of the SARS-CoV-2 Mpro complexed with a non-covalent inhibitor, we performed molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to determine the conformation of the complex when single amino acid residue in the active site is mutated. As a model of amino acid mutation, we constructed mutant proteins with one residue in the active site mutated to alanine. This method is called virtual alanine scan. The results of the MD simulations showed that the conformation and configuration of the ligand was changed for mutants H163A and E166A, although the structure of the whole protein and of the catalytic dyad did not change significantly, suggesting that mutations in His163 and Glu166 may be linked to drug resistance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation, Missense , SARS-CoV-2 , Alanine , Amino Acid Substitution , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/genetics , Catalytic Domain/genetics , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
10.
Sci Signal ; 14(689)2021 06 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1406596

ABSTRACT

Capping of viral messenger RNAs is essential for efficient translation, for virus replication, and for preventing detection by the host cell innate response system. The SARS-CoV-2 genome encodes the 2'-O-methyltransferase nsp16, which, when bound to the coactivator nsp10, uses S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) as a donor to transfer a methyl group to the first ribonucleotide of the mRNA in the final step of viral mRNA capping. Here, we provide biochemical and structural evidence that this reaction requires divalent cations, preferably Mn2+, and a coronavirus-specific four-residue insert. We determined the x-ray structures of the SARS-CoV-2 2'-O-methyltransferase (the nsp16-nsp10 heterodimer) in complex with its reaction substrates, products, and divalent metal cations. These structural snapshots revealed that metal ions and the insert stabilize interactions between the capped RNA and nsp16, resulting in the precise alignment of the ribonucleotides in the active site. Comparison of available structures of 2'-O-methyltransferases with capped RNAs from different organisms revealed that the four-residue insert unique to coronavirus nsp16 alters the backbone conformation of the capped RNA in the binding groove, thereby promoting catalysis. This insert is highly conserved across coronaviruses, and its absence in mammalian methyltransferases makes this region a promising site for structure-guided drug design of selective coronavirus inhibitors.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , RNA Caps/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Catalytic Domain , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Manganese/metabolism , Methylation , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Nucleic Acid Conformation , RNA Caps/chemistry , RNA Caps/genetics , RNA Stability , RNA, Messenger/chemistry , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , S-Adenosylmethionine/chemistry , S-Adenosylmethionine/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Signal Transduction , Substrate Specificity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics
11.
PLoS Comput Biol ; 17(9): e1009384, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1405333

ABSTRACT

Apart from the canonical fingers, palm and thumb domains, the RNA dependent RNA polymerases (RdRp) from the viral order Nidovirales possess two additional domains. Of these, the function of the Nidovirus RdRp associated nucleotidyl transferase domain (NiRAN) remains unanswered. The elucidation of the 3D structure of RdRp from the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), provided the first ever insights into the domain organisation and possible functional characteristics of the NiRAN domain. Using in silico tools, we predict that the NiRAN domain assumes a kinase or phosphotransferase like fold and binds nucleoside triphosphates at its proposed active site. Additionally, using molecular docking we have predicted the binding of three widely used kinase inhibitors and five well characterized anti-microbial compounds at the NiRAN domain active site along with their drug-likeliness. For the first time ever, using basic biochemical tools, this study shows the presence of a kinase like activity exhibited by the SARS-CoV-2 RdRp. Interestingly, a well-known kinase inhibitor- Sorafenib showed a significant inhibition and dampened viral load in SARS-CoV-2 infected cells. In line with the current global COVID-19 pandemic urgency and the emergence of newer strains with significantly higher infectivity, this study provides a new anti-SARS-CoV-2 drug target and potential lead compounds for drug repurposing against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Catalytic Domain , Computer Simulation , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Humans
12.
Drug Res (Stuttg) ; 71(8): 462-472, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1404894

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Replication of SARS-CoV-2 depends on viral RNA-dependent RNA-polymerase (RdRp). Remdesivir, the broad-spectrum RdRp inhibitor acts as nucleoside-analogues (NAs). Remdesivir has initially been repurposed as a promising drug against SARS-CoV-2 infection with some health hazards like liver damage, allergic reaction, low blood-pressure, and breathing-shortness, throat-swelling. In comparison, theaflavin-3'-O-gallate (TFMG), the abundant black tea component has gained importance in controlling viral infection. TFMG is a non-toxic, non-invasive, antioxidant, anticancer and antiviral molecule. RESULTS: Here, we analyzed the inhibitory effect of theaflavin-3'-O-gallate on SARS CoV-2 RdRp in comparison with remdesivir by molecular-docking study. TFMG has been shown more potent in terms of lower Atomic-Contact-Energy (ACE) and higher occupancy of surface area; -393.97 Kcal/mol and 771.90 respectively, favoured with lower desolvation-energy; -9.2: Kcal/mol. TFMG forms more rigid electrostatic and H-bond than remdesivir. TFMG showed strong affinity to RNA primer and template and RNA passage-site of RdRp. CONCLUSIONS: TFMG can block the catalytic residue, NTP entry site, cation binding site, nsp7-nsp12 junction with binding energy of -6. 72 Kcal/mol with Ki value of 11.79, and interface domain with binding energy of -7.72 and -6.16 Kcal/mol with Ki value of 2.21 and 30.71 µM. And most importantly, TFMG shows antioxidant/anti-inflammatory/antiviral effect on human studies.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Biflavonoids/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Catechin/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Drug Design , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Gallic Acid/analogs & derivatives , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Adenosine Monophosphate/chemistry , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/chemistry , Alanine/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Biflavonoids/chemistry , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Catechin/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/chemistry , Gallic Acid/chemistry , Gallic Acid/pharmacology , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Structure-Activity Relationship
13.
Chem Commun (Camb) ; 57(78): 10083-10086, 2021 Sep 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1404890

ABSTRACT

Zinc deficiency is linked to poor prognosis in COVID-19 patients while clinical trials with zinc demonstrate better clinical outcomes. The molecular targets and mechanistic details of the anti-coronaviral activity of zinc remain obscure. We show that zinc not only inhibits the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro) with nanomolar affinity, but also viral replication. We present the first crystal structure of the Mpro-Zn2+ complex at 1.9 Å and provide the structural basis of viral replication inhibition. We show that Zn2+ coordinates with the catalytic dyad at the enzyme active site along with two previously unknown water molecules in a tetrahedral geometry to form a stable inhibited Mpro-Zn2+ complex. Further, the natural ionophore quercetin increases the anti-viral potency of Zn2+. As the catalytic dyad is highly conserved across SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and all variants of SARS-CoV-2, Zn2+ mediated inhibition of Mpro may have wider implications.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Zinc/chemistry , Animals , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , Catalytic Domain , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coordination Complexes/chemistry , Coordination Complexes/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Ions/chemistry , Kinetics , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protease Inhibitors/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Surface Plasmon Resonance , Thermodynamics , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
14.
Biochemistry ; 60(39): 2925-2931, 2021 10 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1402014

ABSTRACT

Rupintrivir targets the 3C cysteine proteases of the picornaviridae family, which includes rhinoviruses and enteroviruses that cause a range of human diseases. Despite being a pan-3C protease inhibitor, rupintrivir activity is extremely weak against the homologous 3C-like protease of SARS-CoV-2. In this study, the crystal structures of rupintrivir were determined bound to enterovirus 68 (EV68) 3C protease and the 3C-like main protease (Mpro) from SARS-CoV-2. While the EV68 3C protease-rupintrivir structure was similar to previously determined complexes with other picornavirus 3C proteases, rupintrivir bound in a unique conformation to the active site of SARS-CoV-2 Mpro splitting the catalytic cysteine and histidine residues. This bifurcation of the catalytic dyad may provide a novel approach for inhibiting cysteine proteases.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/metabolism , Isoxazoles/metabolism , Phenylalanine/analogs & derivatives , Pyrrolidinones/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Valine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Catalytic Domain , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Crystallography, X-Ray , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Enterovirus D, Human/enzymology , Hydrogen Bonding , Isoxazoles/chemistry , Phenylalanine/chemistry , Phenylalanine/metabolism , Protein Binding , Pyrrolidinones/chemistry , Static Electricity , Valine/chemistry , Valine/metabolism
15.
Molecules ; 26(17)2021 Sep 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1390702

ABSTRACT

Human neutrophil elastase (HNE) is a uniquely destructive serine protease with the ability to unleash a wave of proteolytic activity by destroying the inhibitors of other proteases. Although this phenomenon forms an important part of the innate immune response to invading pathogens, it is responsible for the collateral host tissue damage observed in chronic conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and in more acute disorders such as the lung injuries associated with COVID-19 infection. Previously, a combinatorially selected activity-based probe revealed an unexpected substrate preference for oxidised methionine, which suggests a link to oxidative pathogen clearance by neutrophils. Here we use oxidised model substrates and inhibitors to confirm this observation and to show that neutrophil elastase is specifically selective for the di-oxygenated methionine sulfone rather than the mono-oxygenated methionine sulfoxide. We also posit a critical role for ordered solvent in the mechanism of HNE discrimination between the two oxidised forms methionine residue. Preference for the sulfone form of oxidised methionine is especially significant. While both host and pathogens have the ability to reduce methionine sulfoxide back to methionine, a biological pathway to reduce methionine sulfone is not known. Taken together, these data suggest that the oxidative activity of neutrophils may create rapidly cleaved elastase "super substrates" that directly damage tissue, while initiating a cycle of neutrophil oxidation that increases elastase tissue damage and further neutrophil recruitment.


Subject(s)
Immunity, Innate , Leukocyte Elastase/metabolism , Methionine/analogs & derivatives , Neutrophils/immunology , Biocatalysis , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain/genetics , Enzyme Assays , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Leukocyte Elastase/antagonists & inhibitors , Leukocyte Elastase/genetics , Lung/immunology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Methionine/metabolism , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Neutrophil Infiltration , Neutrophils/enzymology , Oxidation-Reduction/drug effects , Proteolysis/drug effects , Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive/immunology , Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Substrate Specificity/immunology
16.
Bioorg Med Chem ; 47: 116393, 2021 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385129

ABSTRACT

The continued toll of COVID-19 has halted the smooth functioning of civilization on a global scale. With a limited understanding of all the essential components of viral machinery and the lack of structural information of this new virus, initial drug discovery efforts had limited success. The availability of high-resolution crystal structures of functionally essential SARS-CoV-2 proteins, including 3CLpro, supports the development of target-specific therapeutics. 3CLpro, the main protease responsible for the processing of viral polypeptide, plays a vital role in SARS-CoV-2 viral replication and translation and is an important target in other coronaviruses. Additionally, 3CLpro is the target of repurposed drugs, such as lopinavir and ritonavir. In this study, target proteins were retrieved from the protein data bank (PDB IDs: 6 M03, 6LU7, 2GZ7, 6 W63, 6SQS, 6YB7, and 6YVF) representing different open states of the main protease to accommodate macromolecular substrate. A hydroxyethylamine (HEA) library was constructed from harvested chemical structures from all the series being used in our laboratories for screening against malaria and Leishmania parasites. The database consisted of ∼1000 structure entries, of which 70% were new to ChemSpider at the time of screening. This in-house library was subjected to high throughput virtual screening (HTVS), followed by standard precision (SP) and then extra precision (XP) docking (Schrodinger LLC 2021). The ligand strain and complex energy of top hits were calculated by Molecular Mechanics Generalized Born Surface Area (MM/GBSA) method. Promising hit compounds (n = 40) specifically binding to 3CLpro with high energy and average MM/GBSA scores were then subjected to (100-ns) MD simulations. Using this sequential selection followed by an in-silico validation approach, we found a promising HEA-based compound (N,N'-((3S,3'S)-piperazine-1,4-diylbis(3-hydroxy-1-phenylbutane-4,2-diyl))bis(2-(5-methyl-1,3-dioxoisoindolin-2-yl)-3-phenylpropanamide)), which showed high in vitro antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2. Further to reduce the size of the otherwise larger ligand, a pharmacophore-based predicted library of âˆ¼42 derivatives was constructed, which were added to the previous compound library and rescreened virtually. Out of several hits from the predicted library, two compounds were synthesized, tested against SARS-CoV-2 culture, and found to have markedly improved antiviral activity.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Ethylamines/chemistry , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Cell Survival/drug effects , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Ethylamines/metabolism , Ethylamines/pharmacology , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protease Inhibitors/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Thermodynamics , Vero Cells
17.
Chem Commun (Camb) ; 57(12): 1430-1433, 2021 Feb 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387498

ABSTRACT

The main viral protease (Mpro) of SARS-CoV-2 is a nucleophilic cysteine hydrolase and a current target for anti-viral chemotherapy. We describe a high-throughput solid phase extraction coupled to mass spectrometry Mpro assay. The results reveal some ß-lactams, including penicillin esters, are active site reacting Mpro inhibitors, thus highlighting the potential of acylating agents for Mpro inhibition.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Cysteine Endopeptidases/drug effects , Mass Spectrometry/methods , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , beta-Lactams/pharmacology , Acylation , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , beta-Lactams/chemistry
18.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 3061, 2021 05 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387342

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has triggered global efforts to develop therapeutics. The main protease of SARS-CoV-2 (Mpro), critical for viral replication, is a key target for therapeutic development. An organoselenium drug called ebselen has been demonstrated to have potent Mpro inhibition and antiviral activity. We have examined the binding modes of ebselen and its derivative in Mpro via high resolution co-crystallography and investigated their chemical reactivity via mass spectrometry. Stronger Mpro inhibition than ebselen and potent ability to rescue infected cells were observed for a number of derivatives. A free selenium atom bound with cysteine of catalytic dyad has been revealed in crystallographic structures of Mpro with ebselen and MR6-31-2 suggesting hydrolysis of the enzyme bound organoselenium covalent adduct and formation of a phenolic by-product, confirmed by mass spectrometry. The target engagement with selenation mechanism of inhibition suggests wider therapeutic applications of these compounds against SARS-CoV-2 and other zoonotic beta-corona viruses.


Subject(s)
Azoles/pharmacology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Organoselenium Compounds/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Azoles/chemistry , Catalytic Domain , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Crystallography, X-Ray , Cysteine/chemistry , Hydrolysis , Isoindoles , Models, Molecular , Organoselenium Compounds/chemistry , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , Reference Standards , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Salicylanilides/chemistry , Salicylanilides/pharmacology , Selenium/metabolism
19.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 636, 2021 01 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387325

ABSTRACT

Nsp15, a uridine specific endoribonuclease conserved across coronaviruses, processes viral RNA to evade detection by host defense systems. Crystal structures of Nsp15 from different coronaviruses have shown a common hexameric assembly, yet how the enzyme recognizes and processes RNA remains poorly understood. Here we report a series of cryo-EM reconstructions of SARS-CoV-2 Nsp15, in both apo and UTP-bound states. The cryo-EM reconstructions, combined with biochemistry, mass spectrometry, and molecular dynamics, expose molecular details of how critical active site residues recognize uridine and facilitate catalysis of the phosphodiester bond. Mass spectrometry revealed the accumulation of cyclic phosphate cleavage products, while analysis of the apo and UTP-bound datasets revealed conformational dynamics not observed by crystal structures that are likely important to facilitate substrate recognition and regulate nuclease activity. Collectively, these findings advance understanding of how Nsp15 processes viral RNA and provide a structural framework for the development of new therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Endoribonucleases/chemistry , Endoribonucleases/ultrastructure , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/ultrastructure , Amino Acid Sequence , Catalytic Domain , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Endoribonucleases/metabolism , Models, Chemical , Models, Molecular , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Uridine Triphosphate/metabolism , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
20.
J Phys Chem Lett ; 12(26): 6218-6226, 2021 Jul 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387122

ABSTRACT

Following our previous work ( Chem. Sci. 2021, 12, 4889-4907), we study the structural dynamics of the SARS-CoV-2 Main Protease dimerization interface (apo dimer) by means of microsecond adaptive sampling molecular dynamics simulations (50 µs) using the AMOEBA polarizable force field (PFF). This interface is structured by a complex H-bond network that is stable only at physiological pH. Structural correlations analysis between its residues and the catalytic site confirms the presence of a buried allosteric site. However, noticeable differences in allosteric connectivity are observed between PFFs and non-PFFs. Interfacial polarizable water molecules are shown to appear at the heart of this discrepancy because they are connected to the global interface H-bond network and able to adapt their dipole moment (and dynamics) to their diverse local physicochemical microenvironments. The water-interface many-body interactions appear to drive the interface volume fluctuations and to therefore mediate the allosteric interactions with the catalytic cavity.


Subject(s)
Molecular Dynamics Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Water/chemistry , Allosteric Site , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Dimerization , Humans , Hydrogen Bonding , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Viral Matrix Proteins/metabolism
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