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1.
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
2.
SAR QSAR Environ Res ; 32(11): 863-888, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1606722

ABSTRACT

The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS CoV-2) was introduced as an epidemic in 2019 and had millions of deaths worldwide. Given the importance of this disease, the recommendation and design of new active compounds are crucial. 3-chymotrypsin-like protease (3 CLpro) inhibitors have been identified as potent compounds for treating SARS-CoV-2 disease. So, the design of new 3 CLpro inhibitors was proposed using a quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) study. In this context, a powerful adaptive least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (ALASSO) penalized variable selection method with inherent advantages coupled with a nonlinear artificial neural network (ANN) modelling method were used to provide a QSAR model with high interpretability and predictability. After evaluating the accuracy and validity of the developed ALASSO-ANN model, new compounds were proposed using effective descriptors, and the biological activity of the new compounds was predicted. Ligand-receptor (LR) interactions were also performed to confirm the interaction strength of the compounds using molecular docking (MD) study. The pharmacokinetics properties and calculated Lipinski's rule of five were applied to all proposed compounds. Due to the ease of synthesis of these suggested new compounds, it is expected that they have acceptable pharmacological properties.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/pharmacokinetics , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Inhibitory Concentration 50 , Molecular Docking Simulation , Neural Networks, Computer , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacokinetics , Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology
3.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(1)2021 Dec 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580698

ABSTRACT

In this review, we collected 1765 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) M-pro inhibitors from the bibliography and other sources, such as the COVID Moonshot project and the ChEMBL database. This set of inhibitors includes only those compounds whose inhibitory capacity, mainly expressed as the half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) value, against M-pro from SARS-CoV-2 has been determined. Several covalent warheads are used to treat covalent and non-covalent inhibitors separately. Chemical space, the variation of the IC50 inhibitory activity when measured by different methods or laboratories, and the influence of 1,4-dithiothreitol (DTT) are discussed. When available, we have collected the values of inhibition of viral replication measured with a cellular antiviral assay and expressed as half maximal effective concentration (EC50) values, and their possible relationship to inhibitory potency against M-pro is analyzed. Finally, the most potent covalent and non-covalent inhibitors that simultaneously inhibit the SARS-CoV-2 M-pro and the virus replication in vitro are discussed.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Databases, Pharmaceutical , Enzyme Assays/methods , Inhibitory Concentration 50 , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Virus Replication/drug effects
4.
Int J Biol Macromol ; 197: 68-76, 2022 Feb 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1587673

ABSTRACT

The C-terminal domain of SARS-CoV main protease (Mpro-C) can form 3D domain-swapped dimer by exchanging the α1-helices fully buried inside the protein hydrophobic core, under non-denaturing conditions. Here, we report that Mpro-C can also form amyloid fibrils under the 3D domain-swappable conditions in vitro, and the fibrils are not formed through runaway/propagated domain swapping. It is found that there are positive correlations between the rates of domain swapping dimerization and amyloid fibrillation at different temperatures, and for different mutants. However, some Mpro-C mutants incapable of 3D domain swapping can still form amyloid fibrils, indicating that 3D domain swapping is not essential for amyloid fibrillation. Furthermore, NMR H/D exchange data and molecular dynamics simulation results suggest that the protofibril core region tends to unpack at the early stage of 3D domain swapping, so that the amyloid fibrillation can proceed during the 3D domain swapping process. We propose that 3D domain swapping makes it possible for the unpacking of the amyloidogenic fragment of the protein and thus accelerates the amyloid fibrillation process kinetically, which explains the well-documented correlations between amyloid fibrillation and 3D domain swapping observed in many proteins.


Subject(s)
Amyloid/chemistry , Amyloid/metabolism , Amyloidosis/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Protein Domains/physiology , Amyloidosis/genetics , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Dimerization , Disulfides/chemistry , Disulfides/metabolism , Kinetics , Models, Molecular , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation , Polymerization , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Domains/genetics , Protein Folding , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , Temperature
5.
J Med Chem ; 64(8): 4991-5000, 2021 04 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574766

ABSTRACT

The main protease (3CL Mpro) from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, is an essential enzyme for viral replication with no human counterpart, making it an attractive drug target. To date, no small-molecule clinical drugs are available that specifically inhibit SARS-CoV-2 Mpro. To aid rational drug design, we determined a neutron structure of Mpro in complex with the α-ketoamide inhibitor telaprevir at near-physiological (22 °C) temperature. We directly observed protonation states in the inhibitor complex and compared them with those in the ligand-free Mpro, revealing modulation of the active-site protonation states upon telaprevir binding. We suggest that binding of other α-ketoamide covalent inhibitors can lead to the same protonation state changes in the Mpro active site. Thus, by studying the protonation state changes induced by inhibitors, we provide crucial insights to help guide rational drug design, allowing precise tailoring of inhibitors to manipulate the electrostatic environment of SARS-CoV-2 Mpro.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Oligopeptides/chemistry , Binding Sites , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Crystallography/methods , Crystallography, X-Ray , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Neutrons , Oligopeptides/metabolism , Protein Conformation , Protons
6.
Molecules ; 26(20)2021 Oct 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526851

ABSTRACT

There have been more than 150 million confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 since the beginning of the pandemic in 2019. By June 2021, the mortality from such infections approached 3.9 million people. Despite the availability of a number of vaccines which provide protection against this virus, the evolution of new viral variants, inconsistent availability of the vaccine around the world, and vaccine hesitancy, in some countries, makes it unreasonable to rely on mass vaccination alone to combat this pandemic. Consequently, much effort is directed to identifying potential antiviral treatments. Marine brominated tyrosine alkaloids are recognized to have antiviral potential. We test here the antiviral capacity of fourteen marine brominated tyrosine alkaloids against five different target proteins from SARS-CoV-2, including main protease (Mpro) (PDB ID: 6lu7), spike glycoprotein (PDB ID: 6VYB), nucleocapsid phosphoprotein (PDB ID: 6VYO), membrane glycoprotein (PDB ID: 6M17), and non-structural protein 10 (nsp10) (PDB ID: 6W4H). These marine alkaloids, particularly the hexabrominated compound, fistularin-3, shows promising docking interactions with predicted binding affinities (S-score = -7.78, -7.65, -6.39, -6.28, -8.84 Kcal/mol) for the main protease (Mpro) (PDB ID: 6lu7), spike glycoprotein (PDB ID: 6VYB), nucleocapsid phosphoprotein (PDB ID: 6VYO), membrane glycoprotein (PDB ID: 6M17), and non-structural protein 10 (nsp10) (PDB ID: 6W4H), respectively, where it forms better interactions with the protein pockets than the native interaction. It also shows promising molecular dynamics, pharmacokinetics, and toxicity profiles. As such, further exploration of the antiviral properties of fistularin-3 against SARS-CoV-2 is merited.


Subject(s)
Alkaloids/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Alkaloids/isolation & purification , Alkaloids/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Halogenation , Humans , Isoxazoles/chemistry , Isoxazoles/metabolism , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Structure-Activity Relationship , Tyrosine/analogs & derivatives , Tyrosine/chemistry , Tyrosine/metabolism
7.
J Mol Model ; 27(11): 341, 2021 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1499466

ABSTRACT

From the beginning of pandemic, more than 240 million people have been infected with a death rate higher than 2%. Indeed, the current exit strategy involving the spreading of vaccines must be combined with progress in effective treatment development. This scenario is sadly supported by the vaccine's immune activation time and the inequalities in the global immunization schedule. Bringing the crises under control means providing the world population with accessible and impactful new therapeutics. We screened a natural product library that contains a unique collection of 2370 natural products into the binding site of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) main protease (Mpro). According to the docking score and to the interaction at the active site, three phenylethanoid glycosides (forsythiaside A, isoacteoside, and verbascoside) were selected. In order to provide better insight into the atomistic interaction and test the impact of the three selected compounds at the binding site, we resorted to a half microsecond-long molecular dynamics simulation. As a result, we are showing that forsythiaside A is the most stable molecule and it is likely to possess the highest inhibitory effect against SARS-CoV-2 Mpro. Phenylethanoid glycosides also have been reported to have both protease and kinase activity. This kinase inhibitory activity is very beneficial in fighting viruses inside the body as kinases are required for viral entry, metabolism, and/or reproduction. The dual activity (kinase/protease) of phenylethanoid glycosides makes them very promising anit-COVID-19 agents.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , Glycosides/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Glucosides/chemistry , Glucosides/metabolism , Glucosides/pharmacology , Glycosides/chemistry , Glycosides/metabolism , Hydrogen Bonding , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Phenols/chemistry , Phenols/metabolism , Phenols/pharmacology
8.
Acta Crystallogr D Struct Biol ; 77(Pt 11): 1357-1364, 2021 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494172

ABSTRACT

Ensemble refinement, the application of molecular dynamics to crystallographic refinement, explicitly models the disorder inherent in macromolecular structures. These ensemble models have been shown to produce more accurate structures than traditional single-model structures. However, suboptimal sampling of the molecular-dynamics simulation and modelling of crystallographic disorder has limited the utility of the method, and can lead to unphysical and strained models. Here, two improvements to the ensemble refinement method implemented within Phenix are presented: DEN restraints, which guide the local sampling of conformations and allow a more robust exploration of local conformational landscapes, and ECHT disorder models, which allow the selection of more physically meaningful and effective disorder models for parameterizing the continuous disorder components within a crystal. These improvements lead to more consistent and physically interpretable simulations of macromolecules in crystals, and allow structural heterogeneity and disorder to be systematically explored on different scales. The new approach is demonstrated on several case studies and the SARS-CoV-2 main protease, and demonstrates how the choice of disorder model affects the type of disorder that is sampled by the restrained molecular-dynamics simulation.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans
9.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 60(48): 25428-25435, 2021 11 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1490696

ABSTRACT

The main protease (3CLp) of the SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent for the COVID-19 pandemic, is one of the main targets for drug development. To be active, 3CLp relies on a complex interplay between dimerization, active site flexibility, and allosteric regulation. The deciphering of these mechanisms is a crucial step to enable the search for inhibitors. In this context, using NMR spectroscopy, we studied the conformation of dimeric 3CLp from the SARS-CoV-2 and monitored ligand binding, based on NMR signal assignments. We performed a fragment-based screening that led to the identification of 38 fragment hits. Their binding sites showed three hotspots on 3CLp, two in the substrate binding pocket and one at the dimer interface. F01 is a non-covalent inhibitor of the 3CLp and has antiviral activity in SARS-CoV-2 infected cells. This study sheds light on the complex structure-function relationships of 3CLp and constitutes a strong basis to assist in developing potent 3CLp inhibitors.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Small Molecule Libraries/pharmacology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Biomolecular , Protein Conformation , Protein Multimerization , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Small Molecule Libraries/chemistry , Vero Cells
10.
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
11.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(21)2021 Oct 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488615

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has received global attention due to the serious threat it poses to public health. Since the outbreak in December 2019, millions of people have been affected and its rapid global spread has led to an upsurge in the search for treatment. To discover hit compounds that can be used alone or in combination with repositioned drugs, we first analyzed the pharmacokinetic and toxicological properties of natural products from Brazil's semiarid region. After, we analyzed the site prediction and druggability of the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro), followed by docking and molecular dynamics simulation. The best SARS-CoV-2 Mpro complexes revealed that other sites were accessed, confirming that our approach could be employed as a suitable starting protocol for ligand prioritization, reinforcing the importance of catalytic cysteine-histidine residues and providing new structural data that could increase the antiviral development mainly against SARS-CoV-2. Here, we selected 10 molecules that could be in vitro assayed in response to COVID-19. Two compounds (b01 and b02) suggest a better potential for interaction with SARS-CoV-2 Mpro and could be further studied.


Subject(s)
Biological Products/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/drug effects , Drug Design , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Binding Sites , Drug Discovery/methods , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Ligands , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Conformation , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/drug effects
12.
Molecules ; 26(20)2021 Oct 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463774

ABSTRACT

A series of novel naphthopyrano[2,3-d]pyrimidin-11(12H)-one containing isoxazole nucleus 4 was synthesized under microwave irradiation and classical conditions in moderate to excellent yields upon 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition reaction using various arylnitrile oxides under copper(I) catalyst. A one-pot, three-component reaction, N-propargylation and Dimroth rearrangement were used as the key steps for the preparation of the dipolarophiles3. The structures of the synthesized compounds were established by 1H NMR, 13C NMR and HRMS-ES means. The present study aims to also predict the theoretical assembly of the COVID-19 protease (SARS-CoV-2 Mpro) and to discover in advance whether this protein can be targeted by the compounds 4a-1 and thus be synthesized. The docking scores of these compounds were compared to those of the co-crystallized native ligand inhibitor (N3) which was used as a reference standard. The results showed that all the synthesized compounds (4a-l) gave interesting binding scores compared to those of N3 inhibitor. It was found that compounds 4a, 4e and 4i achieved greatly similar binding scores and modes of interaction than N3, indicating promising affinity towards SARS-CoV-2 Mpro. On the other hand, the derivatives 4k, 4h and 4j showed binding energy scores (-8.9, -8.5 and -8.4 kcal/mol, respectively) higher than the Mpro N3 inhibitor (-7.0 kcal/mol), revealing, in their turn, a strong interaction with the target protease, although their interactions were not entirely comparable to that of the reference N3.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemical synthesis , Drug Design , Isoxazoles/chemistry , Pyrimidinones/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Click Chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Humans , Microwaves , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protease Inhibitors/chemistry , Protease Inhibitors/metabolism , Protease Inhibitors/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Structure-Activity Relationship , Thermodynamics
13.
Phys Chem Chem Phys ; 23(40): 22957-22971, 2021 Oct 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462045

ABSTRACT

The identification of chemical compounds able to bind specific sites of the human/viral proteins involved in the SARS-CoV-2 infection cycle is a prerequisite to design effective antiviral drugs. Here we conduct a molecular dynamics study with the aim to assess the interactions of ivermectin, an antiparasitic drug with broad-spectrum antiviral activity, with the human Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2), the viral 3CLpro and PLpro proteases, and the viral SARS Unique Domain (SUD). The drug/target interactions have been characterized in silico by describing the nature of the non-covalent interactions found and by measuring the extent of their time duration along the MD simulation. Results reveal that the ACE2 protein and the ACE2/RBD aggregates form the most persistent interactions with ivermectin, while the binding with the remaining viral proteins is more limited and unspecific.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Ivermectin/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , G-Quadruplexes , Humans , Hydrogen Bonding , Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions , Ivermectin/chemistry , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , RNA/genetics , RNA/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2
14.
Appl Biochem Biotechnol ; 193(10): 3371-3394, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1442180

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a disease that puts most of the world on lockdown and the search for therapeutic drugs is still ongoing. Therefore, this study used in silico screening to identify natural bioactive compounds from fruits, herbaceous plants, and marine invertebrates that are able to inhibit protease activity in SARS-CoV-2 (PDB: 6LU7). We have used extensive screening strategies such as drug likeliness, antiviral activity value prediction, molecular docking, ADME, molecular dynamics (MD) simulation, and MM/GBSA. A total of 17 compounds were shortlisted using Lipinski's rule in which 5 compounds showed significant predicted antiviral activity values. Among these 5, only 2 compounds, Macrolactin A and Stachyflin, showed good binding energy of -9.22 and -8.00 kcal/mol, respectively, within the binding pocket of the Mpro catalytic residues (HIS 41 and CYS 145). These two compounds were further analyzed to determine their ADME properties. The ADME evaluation of these 2 compounds suggested that they could be effective in developing therapeutic drugs to be used in clinical trials. MD simulations showed that protein-ligand complexes of Macrolactin A and Stachyflin with the target receptor (6LU7) were stable for 100 nanoseconds. The MM/GBSA calculations of Mpro-Macrolactin A complex indicated higher binding free energy (-42.58 ± 6.35 kcal/mol). Dynamic cross-correlation matrix (DCCM) and principal component analysis (PCA) on the residual movement in the MD trajectories further confirmed the stability of Macrolactin A bound state with 6LU7. In conclusion, this study showed that marine natural compound Macrolactin A could be an effective therapeutic inhibitor against SARS-CoV-2 protease (6LU7). Additional in vitro and in vivo validations are strongly needed to determine the efficacy and therapeutic dose of Macrolactin A in biological systems.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Macrolides/chemistry , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Humans
15.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 5493, 2021 09 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1428816

ABSTRACT

Macromolecular dynamics manifest as disorder in structure determination, which is subsequently accounted for by displacement parameters (also called temperature factors, or B-factors) or alternate conformations. Though B-factors contain detailed information about structural dynamics, they are the total of multiple sources of disorder, making them difficult to interpret and thus little-used in structural analysis. We report here an analytical approach for decomposing molecular disorder into a parsimonious hierarchical series of contributions, providing an intuitive basis for quantitative structural-dynamics analysis. We demonstrate the decomposition of disorder on example SARS-CoV-2 and STEAP4 structures, from both crystallographic and cryo-electron microscopy data, and reveal how understanding of the macromolecular disorder leads to deeper understanding of molecular motions and flexibility, and suggests hypotheses for molecular mechanisms.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Macromolecular Substances/chemistry , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , COVID-19 , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Membrane Proteins/chemistry , Oxidoreductases/chemistry , Protein Conformation
16.
Viruses ; 13(9)2021 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1411090

ABSTRACT

The porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) is an Alphacoronavirus (α-CoV) that causes high mortality in infected piglets, resulting in serious economic losses in the farming industry. Hypericin is a dianthrone compound that has been shown as an antiviral activity on several viruses. Here, we first evaluated the antiviral effect of hypericin in PEDV and found the viral replication and egression were significantly reduced with hypericin post-treatment. As hypericin has been shown in SARS-CoV-2 that it is bound to viral 3CLpro, we thus established a molecular docking between hypericin and PEDV 3CLpro using different software and found hypericin bound to 3CLpro through two pockets. These binding pockets were further verified by another docking between hypericin and PEDV 3CLpro pocket mutants, and the fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) assay confirmed that hypericin inhibits the PEDV 3CLpro activity. Moreover, the alignments of α-CoV 3CLpro sequences or crystal structure revealed that the pockets mediating hypericin and PEDV 3CLpro binding were highly conserved, especially in transmissible gastroenteritis virus (TGEV). We then validated the anti-TGEV effect of hypericin through viral replication and egression. Overall, our results push forward that hypericin was for the first time shown to have an inhibitory effect on PEDV and TGEV by targeting 3CLpro, and it deserves further attention as not only a pan-anti-α-CoV compound but potentially also as a compound of other coronaviral infections.


Subject(s)
Alphacoronavirus/drug effects , Alphacoronavirus/physiology , Anthracenes/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Perylene/analogs & derivatives , Virus Replication/drug effects , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Enzyme Activation/drug effects , Models, Molecular , Perylene/pharmacology , Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus/drug effects , Recombinant Proteins , Structure-Activity Relationship , Swine , Swine Diseases/virology , Vero Cells
17.
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
18.
Biomolecules ; 11(9)2021 Sep 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1408460

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 virus mutations might increase its virulence, and thus the severity and duration of the ongoing pandemic. Global drug discovery campaigns have successfully developed several vaccines to reduce the number of infections by the virus. However, finding a small molecule pharmaceutical that is effective in inhibiting SARS-CoV-2 remains a challenge. Natural products are the origin of many currently used pharmaceuticals and, for this reason, a library of in-house fungal extracts were screened to assess their potential to inhibit the main viral protease Mpro in vitro. The extract of Penicillium citrinum, TDPEF34, showed potential inhibition and was further analysed to identify potential Mpro inhibitors. Following bio-guided isolation, a series of benzodiazepine alkaloids cyclopenins with good-to-moderate activity against SARS-CoV-2 Mpro were identified. The mode of enzyme inhibition of these compounds was predicted by docking and molecular dynamic simulation. Compounds 1 (isolated as two conformers of S- and R-isomers), 2, and 4 were found to have promising in vitro inhibitory activity towards Mpro, with an IC50 values range of 0.36-0.89 µM comparable to the positive control GC376. The in silico investigation revealed compounds to achieve stable binding with the enzyme active site through multiple H-bonding and hydrophobic interactions. Additionally, the isolated compounds showed very good drug-likeness and ADMET properties. Our findings could be utilized in further in vitro and in vivo investigations to produce anti-SARS-CoV-2 drug candidates. These findings also provide critical structural information that could be used in the future for designing potent Mpro inhibitors.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Penicillium/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Benzodiazepinones/chemistry , Benzodiazepinones/isolation & purification , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Cysteine Proteinase Inhibitors/isolation & purification
19.
J Comput Aided Mol Des ; 35(9): 963-971, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1406168

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented efforts to identify drugs that can reduce its associated morbidity/mortality rate. Computational chemistry approaches hold the potential for triaging potential candidates far more quickly than their experimental counterparts. These methods have been widely used to search for small molecules that can inhibit critical proteins involved in the SARS-CoV-2 replication cycle. An important target is the SARS-CoV-2 main protease Mpro, an enzyme that cleaves the viral polyproteins into individual proteins required for viral replication and transcription. Unfortunately, standard computational screening methods face difficulties in ranking diverse ligands to a receptor due to disparate ligand scaffolds and varying charge states. Here, we describe full density functional quantum mechanical (DFT) simulations of Mpro in complex with various ligands to obtain absolute ligand binding energies. Our calculations are enabled by a new cloud-native parallel DFT implementation running on computational resources from Amazon Web Services (AWS). The results we obtain are promising: the approach is quite capable of scoring a very diverse set of existing drug compounds for their affinities to M pro and suggest the DFT approach is potentially more broadly applicable to repurpose screening against this target. In addition, each DFT simulation required only ~ 1 h (wall clock time) per ligand. The fast turnaround time raises the practical possibility of a broad application of large-scale quantum mechanics in the drug discovery pipeline at stages where ligand diversity is essential.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Atazanavir Sulfate/chemistry , Atazanavir Sulfate/metabolism , Binding Sites , Cloud Computing , Density Functional Theory , Hydrogen Bonding , Ligands , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protein Conformation , Quantum Theory
20.
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
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