Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 20 de 51
Filter
1.
ChemMedChem ; 16(22): 3418-3427, 2021 11 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1525425

ABSTRACT

Currently, limited therapeutic options are available for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). We have developed a set of pyrazine-based small molecules. A series of pyrazine conjugates was synthesized by microwave-assisted click chemistry and benzotriazole chemistry. All the synthesized conjugates were screened against the SAR-CoV-2 virus and their cytotoxicity was determined. Computational studies were carried out to validate the biological data. Some of the pyrazine-triazole conjugates (5 d-g) and (S)-N-(1-(benzo[d]thiazol-2-yl)-2-phenylethyl)pyrazine-2-carboxamide 12 i show significant potency against SARS-CoV-2 among the synthesized conjugates. The selectivity index (SI) of potent conjugates indicates significant efficacy compared to the reference drug (Favipiravir).


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Pyrazines/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Amides/pharmacology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemical synthesis , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/toxicity , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Structure , Pyrazines/chemical synthesis , Pyrazines/metabolism , Pyrazines/toxicity , Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship , Vero Cells
2.
Elife ; 102021 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1456505

ABSTRACT

The absence of 'shovel-ready' anti-coronavirus drugs during vaccine development has exceedingly worsened the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Furthermore, new vaccine-resistant variants and coronavirus outbreaks may occur in the near future, and we must be ready to face this possibility. However, efficient antiviral drugs are still lacking to this day, due to our poor understanding of the mode of incorporation and mechanism of action of nucleotides analogs that target the coronavirus polymerase to impair its essential activity. Here, we characterize the impact of remdesivir (RDV, the only FDA-approved anti-coronavirus drug) and other nucleotide analogs (NAs) on RNA synthesis by the coronavirus polymerase using a high-throughput, single-molecule, magnetic-tweezers platform. We reveal that the location of the modification in the ribose or in the base dictates the catalytic pathway(s) used for its incorporation. We show that RDV incorporation does not terminate viral RNA synthesis, but leads the polymerase into backtrack as far as 30 nt, which may appear as termination in traditional ensemble assays. SARS-CoV-2 is able to evade the endogenously synthesized product of the viperin antiviral protein, ddhCTP, though the polymerase incorporates this NA well. This experimental paradigm is essential to the discovery and development of therapeutics targeting viral polymerases.


To multiply and spread from cell to cell, the virus responsible for COVID-19 (also known as SARS-CoV-2) must first replicate its genetic information. This process involves a 'polymerase' protein complex making a faithful copy by assembling a precise sequence of building blocks, or nucleotides. The only drug approved against SARS-CoV-2 by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), remdesivir, consists of a nucleotide analog, a molecule whose structure is similar to the actual building blocks needed for replication. If the polymerase recognizes and integrates these analogs into the growing genetic sequence, the replication mechanism is disrupted, and the virus cannot multiply. Most approaches to study this process seem to indicate that remdesivir works by stopping the polymerase and terminating replication altogether. Yet, exactly how remdesivir and other analogs impair the synthesis of new copies of the virus remains uncertain. To explore this question, Seifert, Bera et al. employed an approach called magnetic tweezers which uses a magnetic field to manipulate micro-particles with great precision. Unlike other methods, this technique allows analogs to be integrated under conditions similar to those found in cells, and to be examined at the level of a single molecule. The results show that contrary to previous assumptions, remdesivir does not terminate replication; instead, it causes the polymerase to pause and backtrack (which may appear as termination in other techniques). The same approach was then applied to other nucleotide analogs, some of which were also found to target the SARS-CoV-2 polymerase. However, these analogs are incorporated differently to remdesivir and with less efficiency. They also obstruct the polymerase in distinct ways. Taken together, the results by Seifert, Bera et al. suggest that magnetic tweezers can be a powerful approach to reveal how analogs interfere with replication. This information could be used to improve currently available analogs as well as develop new antiviral drugs that are more effective against SARS-CoV-2. This knowledge will be key at a time when treatments against COVID-19 are still lacking, and may be needed to protect against new variants and future outbreaks.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Nucleotides/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/pharmacology , Cell Line , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , Humans , Models, Theoretical , Nucleotides/metabolism , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Stochastic Processes , Virus Replication/drug effects
3.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 19161, 2021 09 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1440480

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is associated with fatal pulmonary fibrosis. Small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) can be developed to induce RNA interference against SARS-CoV-2, and their susceptible target sites can be inferred by Argonaute crosslinking immunoprecipitation sequencing (AGO CLIP). Here, by reanalysing AGO CLIP data in RNA viruses, we delineated putative AGO binding in the conserved non-structural protein 12 (nsp12) region encoding RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP) in SARS-CoV-2. We utilised the inferred AGO binding to optimise the local RNA folding parameter to calculate target accessibility and predict all potent siRNA target sites in the SARS-CoV-2 genome, avoiding sequence variants. siRNAs loaded onto AGO also repressed seed (positions 2-8)-matched transcripts by acting as microRNAs (miRNAs). To utilise this, we further screened 13 potential siRNAs whose seed sequences were matched to known antifibrotic miRNAs and confirmed their miRNA-like activity. A miR-27-mimicking siRNA designed to target the nsp12 region (27/RdRP) was validated to silence a synthesised nsp12 RNA mimic in lung cell lines and function as an antifibrotic miR-27 in regulating target transcriptomes related to TGF-ß signalling. siRNA sequences with an antifibrotic miRNA-like activity that could synergistically treat COVID-19 are available online ( http://clip.korea.ac.kr/covid19 ).


Subject(s)
Argonaute Proteins/genetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , MicroRNAs/genetics , RNA, Small Interfering/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , A549 Cells , Argonaute Proteins/metabolism , Base Sequence , Binding Sites/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Gene Expression Profiling/methods , HeLa Cells , Humans , Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , Pulmonary Fibrosis/metabolism , RNA Interference , RNA-Seq/methods , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
4.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 18851, 2021 09 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1434149

ABSTRACT

In this pandemic SARS-CoV-2 crisis, any attempt to contain and eliminate the virus will also stop its spread and consequently decrease the risk of severe illness and death. While ozone treatment has been suggested as an effective disinfection process, no precise mechanism of action has been previously reported. This study aimed to further investigate the effect of ozone treatment on SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, virus collected from nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swab and sputum samples from symptomatic patients was exposed to ozone for different exposure times. The virus morphology and structure were monitored and analyzed through Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy (AAS), and ATR-FTIR. The obtained results showed that ozone treatment not only unsettles the virus morphology but also alters the virus proteins' structure and conformation through amino acid disturbance and Zn ion release from the virus non-structural proteins. These results could provide a clearer pathway for virus elimination and therapeutics preparation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Ozone/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Humans , Microscopy, Electron, Transmission , Protein Structure, Secondary/drug effects , Protein Structure, Tertiary/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Time Factors , Viral Envelope/chemistry , Viral Envelope/drug effects , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Zinc/chemistry , Zinc/metabolism
5.
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
6.
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
7.
Phys Chem Chem Phys ; 23(36): 20117-20128, 2021 Sep 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1404891

ABSTRACT

The ongoing pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 emphasizes the need for effective therapeutics. Inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) by nucleotide analogs provides a promising antiviral strategy. One common group of RdRp inhibitors, 2'-modified nucleotides, are reported to exhibit different behaviors in the SARS-CoV-2 RdRp transcription assay. Three of these analogs, 2'-O-methyl UTP, Sofosbuvir, and 2'-methyl CTP, act as effective inhibitors in previous biochemical experiments, while Gemcitabine and ara-UTP show no inhibitory activity. To understand the impact of the 2'-modification on their inhibitory effects, we conducted extensive molecular dynamics simulations and relative binding free energy calculations using the free energy perturbation method on SARS-CoV-2 replication-transcription complex (RTC) with these five nucleotide analogs. Our results reveal that the five nucleotide analogs display comparable binding affinities to SARS-CoV-2 RdRp and they can all be added to the nascent RNA chain. Moreover, we examine how the incorporation of these nucleotide triphosphate (NTP) analogs will impact the addition of the next nucleotide. Our results indicate that 2'-O-methyl UTP can weaken the binding of the subsequent NTP and consequently lead to partial chain termination. Additionally, Sofosbuvir and 2'-methyl CTP can cause immediate termination due to the strong steric hindrance introduced by their bulky 2'-methyl groups. In contrast, nucleotide analogs with smaller substitutions, such as the fluorine atoms and the ara-hydroxyl group in Gemcitabine and ara-UTP, have a marginal impact on the polymerization process. Our findings are consistent with experimental observations, and more importantly, shed light on the detailed molecular mechanism of SARS-CoV-2 RdRp inhibition by 2'-substituted nucleotide analogs, and may facilitate the rational design of antiviral agents to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 RdRp.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Nucleotides/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/chemistry , Humans , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Models, Molecular , Nucleic Acid Conformation , Nucleotides/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology
8.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(6)2021 Mar 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389394

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 currently lacks effective first-line drug treatment. We present promising data from in silico docking studies of new Methisazone compounds (modified with calcium, Ca; iron, Fe; magnesium, Mg; manganese, Mn; or zinc, Zn) designed to bind more strongly to key proteins involved in replication of SARS-CoV-2. In this in silico molecular docking study, we investigated the inhibiting role of Methisazone and the modified drugs against SARS-CoV-2 proteins: ribonucleic acid (RNA)-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp), spike protein, papain-like protease (PlPr), and main protease (MPro). We found that the highest binding interactions were found with the spike protein (6VYB), with the highest overall binding being observed with Mn-bound Methisazone at -8.3 kcal/mol, followed by Zn and Ca at -8.0 kcal/mol, and Fe and Mg at -7.9 kcal/mol. We also found that the metal-modified Methisazone had higher affinity for PlPr and MPro. In addition, we identified multiple binding pockets that could be singly or multiply occupied on all proteins tested. The best binding energy was with Mn-Methisazone versus spike protein, and the largest cumulative increases in binding energies were found with PlPr. We suggest that further studies are warranted to identify whether these compounds may be effective for treatment and/or prophylaxis.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Metals/chemistry , Methisazone/chemistry , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , COVID-19/drug therapy , Calcium/chemistry , Calcium/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Drug Design , Humans , Iron/chemistry , Iron/metabolism , Magnesium/chemistry , Magnesium/metabolism , Manganese/chemistry , Manganese/metabolism , Metals/metabolism , Methisazone/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Zinc/chemistry , Zinc/metabolism
9.
Biochemistry ; 60(24): 1869-1875, 2021 06 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387102

ABSTRACT

Remdesivir is an antiviral drug initially designed against the Ebola virus. The results obtained with it both in biochemical studies in vitro and in cell line assays in vivo were very promising, but it proved to be ineffective in clinical trials. Remdesivir exhibited far better efficacy when repurposed against SARS-CoV-2. The chemistry that accounts for this difference is the subject of this study. Here, we examine the hypothesis that remdesivir monophosphate (RMP)-containing RNA functions as a template at the polymerase site for the second run of RNA synthesis, and as mRNA at the decoding center for protein synthesis. Our hypothesis is supported by the observation that RMP can be incorporated into RNA by the RNA-dependent RNA polymerases (RdRps) of both viruses, although some of the incorporated RMPs are subsequently removed by exoribonucleases. Furthermore, our hypothesis is consistent with the fact that RdRp of SARS-CoV-2 selects RMP for incorporation over AMP by 3-fold in vitro, and that RMP-added RNA can be rapidly extended, even though primer extension is often paused when the added RMP is translocated at the i + 3 position (with i the nascent base pair at an initial insertion site of RMP) or when the concentrations of the subsequent nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs) are below their physiological concentrations. These observations have led to the hypothesis that remdesivir might be a delayed chain terminator. However, that hypothesis is challenged under physiological concentrations of NTPs by the observation that approximately three-quarters of RNA products efficiently overrun the pause.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Ebolavirus/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Virus Replication/drug effects , Adenosine Monophosphate/genetics , Adenosine Monophosphate/metabolism , Alanine/genetics , Alanine/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Base Pairing , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Protein Biosynthesis/drug effects , RNA/genetics , RNA/metabolism , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism
10.
Cell ; 184(1): 184-193.e10, 2021 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385213

ABSTRACT

Transcription of SARS-CoV-2 mRNA requires sequential reactions facilitated by the replication and transcription complex (RTC). Here, we present a structural snapshot of SARS-CoV-2 RTC as it transitions toward cap structure synthesis. We determine the atomic cryo-EM structure of an extended RTC assembled by nsp7-nsp82-nsp12-nsp132-RNA and a single RNA-binding protein, nsp9. Nsp9 binds tightly to nsp12 (RdRp) NiRAN, allowing nsp9 N terminus inserting into the catalytic center of nsp12 NiRAN, which then inhibits activity. We also show that nsp12 NiRAN possesses guanylyltransferase activity, catalyzing the formation of cap core structure (GpppA). The orientation of nsp13 that anchors the 5' extension of template RNA shows a remarkable conformational shift, resulting in zinc finger 3 of its ZBD inserting into a minor groove of paired template-primer RNA. These results reason an intermediate state of RTC toward mRNA synthesis, pave a way to understand the RTC architecture, and provide a target for antiviral development.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Cryoelectron Microscopy , RNA, Messenger/chemistry , RNA, Viral/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Viral Replicase Complex Proteins/chemistry , Amino Acid Sequence , Coronavirus/chemistry , Coronavirus/classification , Coronavirus/enzymology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , RNA Helicases/metabolism , RNA-Binding Proteins/chemistry , RNA-Binding Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Sequence Alignment , Transcription, Genetic , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication
11.
J Virol ; 95(17): e0074721, 2021 08 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1356909

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is bringing an unprecedented health crisis to the world. To date, our understanding of the interaction between SARS-CoV-2 and host innate immunity is still limited. Previous studies reported that SARS-CoV-2 nonstructural protein 12 (NSP12) was able to suppress interferon-ß (IFN-ß) activation in IFN-ß promoter luciferase reporter assays, which provided insights into the pathogenesis of COVID-19. In this study, we demonstrated that IFN-ß promoter-mediated luciferase activity was reduced during coexpression of NSP12. However, we could show NSP12 did not affect IRF3 or NF-κB activation. Moreover, IFN-ß production induced by Sendai virus (SeV) infection or other stimulus was not affected by NSP12 at mRNA or protein level. Additionally, the type I IFN signaling pathway was not affected by NSP12, as demonstrated by the expression of interferon-stimulated genes (ISGs). Further experiments revealed that different experiment systems, including protein tags and plasmid backbones, could affect the readouts of IFN-ß promoter luciferase assays. In conclusion, unlike as previously reported, our study showed SARS-CoV-2 NSP12 protein is not an IFN-ß antagonist. It also rings the alarm on the general usage of luciferase reporter assays in studying SARS-CoV-2. IMPORTANCE Previous studies investigated the interaction between SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins and interferon signaling and proposed that several SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins, including NSP12, could suppress IFN-ß activation. However, most of these results were generated from IFN-ß promoter luciferase reporter assay and have not been validated functionally. In our study, we found that, although NSP12 could suppress IFN-ß promoter luciferase activity, it showed no inhibitory effect on IFN-ß production or its downstream signaling. Further study revealed that contradictory results could be generated from different experiment systems. On one hand, we demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 NSP12 could not suppress IFN-ß signaling. On the other hand, our study suggests that caution needs to be taken with the interpretation of SARS-CoV-2-related luciferase assays.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , Interferon-beta , Promoter Regions, Genetic , SARS-CoV-2 , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/genetics , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/metabolism , Interferon-beta/antagonists & inhibitors , Interferon-beta/biosynthesis , Interferon-beta/genetics , NF-kappa B/genetics , NF-kappa B/metabolism , RNA, Messenger/biosynthesis , RNA, Messenger/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism
12.
J Virol ; 95(17): e0074721, 2021 08 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1350002

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is bringing an unprecedented health crisis to the world. To date, our understanding of the interaction between SARS-CoV-2 and host innate immunity is still limited. Previous studies reported that SARS-CoV-2 nonstructural protein 12 (NSP12) was able to suppress interferon-ß (IFN-ß) activation in IFN-ß promoter luciferase reporter assays, which provided insights into the pathogenesis of COVID-19. In this study, we demonstrated that IFN-ß promoter-mediated luciferase activity was reduced during coexpression of NSP12. However, we could show NSP12 did not affect IRF3 or NF-κB activation. Moreover, IFN-ß production induced by Sendai virus (SeV) infection or other stimulus was not affected by NSP12 at mRNA or protein level. Additionally, the type I IFN signaling pathway was not affected by NSP12, as demonstrated by the expression of interferon-stimulated genes (ISGs). Further experiments revealed that different experiment systems, including protein tags and plasmid backbones, could affect the readouts of IFN-ß promoter luciferase assays. In conclusion, unlike as previously reported, our study showed SARS-CoV-2 NSP12 protein is not an IFN-ß antagonist. It also rings the alarm on the general usage of luciferase reporter assays in studying SARS-CoV-2. IMPORTANCE Previous studies investigated the interaction between SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins and interferon signaling and proposed that several SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins, including NSP12, could suppress IFN-ß activation. However, most of these results were generated from IFN-ß promoter luciferase reporter assay and have not been validated functionally. In our study, we found that, although NSP12 could suppress IFN-ß promoter luciferase activity, it showed no inhibitory effect on IFN-ß production or its downstream signaling. Further study revealed that contradictory results could be generated from different experiment systems. On one hand, we demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 NSP12 could not suppress IFN-ß signaling. On the other hand, our study suggests that caution needs to be taken with the interpretation of SARS-CoV-2-related luciferase assays.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , Interferon-beta , Promoter Regions, Genetic , SARS-CoV-2 , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/genetics , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/metabolism , Interferon-beta/antagonists & inhibitors , Interferon-beta/biosynthesis , Interferon-beta/genetics , NF-kappa B/genetics , NF-kappa B/metabolism , RNA, Messenger/biosynthesis , RNA, Messenger/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism
13.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 49(15): 8822-8835, 2021 09 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1343703

ABSTRACT

The catalytic subunit of SARS-CoV-2 RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) contains two active sites that catalyze nucleotidyl-monophosphate transfer (NMPylation). Mechanistic studies and drug discovery have focused on RNA synthesis by the highly conserved RdRp. The second active site, which resides in a Nidovirus RdRp-Associated Nucleotidyl transferase (NiRAN) domain, is poorly characterized, but both catalytic reactions are essential for viral replication. One study showed that NiRAN transfers NMP to the first residue of RNA-binding protein nsp9; another reported a structure of nsp9 containing two additional N-terminal residues bound to the NiRAN active site but observed NMP transfer to RNA instead. We show that SARS-CoV-2 RdRp NMPylates the native but not the extended nsp9. Substitutions of the invariant NiRAN residues abolish NMPylation, whereas substitution of a catalytic RdRp Asp residue does not. NMPylation can utilize diverse nucleotide triphosphates, including remdesivir triphosphate, is reversible in the presence of pyrophosphate, and is inhibited by nucleotide analogs and bisphosphonates, suggesting a path for rational design of NiRAN inhibitors. We reconcile these and existing findings using a new model in which nsp9 remodels both active sites to alternately support initiation of RNA synthesis by RdRp or subsequent capping of the product RNA by the NiRAN domain.


Subject(s)
Nidovirales/enzymology , Nucleotides/metabolism , Protein Domains , RNA-Binding Proteins/chemistry , RNA-Binding Proteins/metabolism , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Catalytic Domain , Coenzymes/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Diphosphates/pharmacology , Diphosphonates/pharmacology , Guanosine Triphosphate/metabolism , Manganese , Models, Molecular , Nidovirales/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Uridine Triphosphate/metabolism
14.
FEBS Lett ; 595(17): 2248-2256, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1326724

ABSTRACT

The endoplasmic reticulum transmembrane protein vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein (VAP) plays a central role in the formation and function of membrane contact sites (MCS) through its interactions with proteins. The major sperm protein (MSP) domain of VAP binds to a variety of sequences which are referred to as FFAT-like motifs. In this study, we investigated the interactions of eight peptides containing FFAT-like motifs with the VAP-A MSP domain (VAP-AMSP ) by solution NMR. Six of eight peptides are specifically bound to VAP-A. Furthermore, we found that the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 has an FFAT-like motif which specifically binds to VAP-AMSP as well as other FFAT-like motifs. Our results will contribute to the discovery of new VAP interactors.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Peptides/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Vesicular Transport Proteins/chemistry , Amino Acid Motifs , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Humans , Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Biomolecular , Peptides/metabolism , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Vesicular Transport Proteins/metabolism
15.
Sci Signal ; 14(690)2021 07 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1299215

ABSTRACT

Inorganic polyphosphates (polyPs) are linear polymers composed of repeated phosphate (PO4 3-) units linked together by multiple high-energy phosphoanhydride bonds. In addition to being a source of energy, polyPs have cytoprotective and antiviral activities. Here, we investigated the antiviral activities of long-chain polyPs against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. In molecular docking analyses, polyPs interacted with several conserved amino acid residues in angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), the host receptor that facilitates virus entry, and in viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). ELISA and limited proteolysis assays using nano- LC-MS/MS mapped polyP120 binding to ACE2, and site-directed mutagenesis confirmed interactions between ACE2 and SARS-CoV-2 RdRp and identified the specific amino acid residues involved. PolyP120 enhanced the proteasomal degradation of both ACE2 and RdRp, thus impairing replication of the British B.1.1.7 SARS-CoV-2 variant. We thus tested polyPs for functional interactions with the virus in SARS-CoV-2-infected Vero E6 and Caco2 cells and in primary human nasal epithelial cells. Delivery of a nebulized form of polyP120 reduced the amounts of viral positive-sense genomic and subgenomic RNAs, of RNA transcripts encoding proinflammatory cytokines, and of viral structural proteins, thereby presenting SARS-CoV-2 infection in cells in vitro.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Polyphosphates/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Administration, Inhalation , Amino Acid Sequence , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , Antiviral Agents/administration & dosage , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Cytokines/metabolism , HEK293 Cells , Host Microbial Interactions/drug effects , Host Microbial Interactions/genetics , Host Microbial Interactions/physiology , Humans , In Vitro Techniques , Models, Biological , Molecular Docking Simulation , Nebulizers and Vaporizers , Polyphosphates/administration & dosage , Polyphosphates/chemistry , Proteasome Endopeptidase Complex/metabolism , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Proteolysis/drug effects , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Sequence Homology, Amino Acid , Signal Transduction/drug effects , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
16.
Biochem J ; 478(13): 2425-2443, 2021 07 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1289982

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) global pandemic has turned into the largest public health and economic crisis in recent history impacting virtually all sectors of society. There is a need for effective therapeutics to battle the ongoing pandemic. Repurposing existing drugs with known pharmacological safety profiles is a fast and cost-effective approach to identify novel treatments. The COVID-19 etiologic agent is the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a single-stranded positive-sense RNA virus. Coronaviruses rely on the enzymatic activity of the replication-transcription complex (RTC) to multiply inside host cells. The RTC core catalytic component is the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) holoenzyme. The RdRp is one of the key druggable targets for CoVs due to its essential role in viral replication, high degree of sequence and structural conservation and the lack of homologues in human cells. Here, we have expressed, purified and biochemically characterised active SARS-CoV-2 RdRp complexes. We developed a novel fluorescence resonance energy transfer-based strand displacement assay for monitoring SARS-CoV-2 RdRp activity suitable for a high-throughput format. As part of a larger research project to identify inhibitors for all the enzymatic activities encoded by SARS-CoV-2, we used this assay to screen a custom chemical library of over 5000 approved and investigational compounds for novel SARS-CoV-2 RdRp inhibitors. We identified three novel compounds (GSK-650394, C646 and BH3I-1) and confirmed suramin and suramin-like compounds as in vitro SARS-CoV-2 RdRp activity inhibitors. We also characterised the antiviral efficacy of these drugs in cell-based assays that we developed to monitor SARS-CoV-2 growth.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Small Molecule Libraries/pharmacology , Animals , Benzoates/pharmacology , Bridged Bicyclo Compounds, Heterocyclic/pharmacology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Assays , Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Holoenzymes/metabolism , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Small Molecule Libraries/chemistry , Suramin/pharmacology , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
17.
mBio ; 12(3): e0142321, 2021 06 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1280400

ABSTRACT

The catalytic subunit of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) Nsp12 has a unique nidovirus RdRp-associated nucleotidyltransferase (NiRAN) domain that transfers nucleoside monophosphates to the Nsp9 protein and the nascent RNA. The NiRAN and RdRp modules form a dynamic interface distant from their catalytic sites, and both activities are essential for viral replication. We report that codon-optimized (for the pause-free translation in bacterial cells) Nsp12 exists in an inactive state in which NiRAN-RdRp interactions are broken, whereas translation by slow ribosomes and incubation with accessory Nsp7/8 subunits or nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs) partially rescue RdRp activity. Our data show that adenosine and remdesivir triphosphates promote the synthesis of A-less RNAs, as does ppGpp, while amino acid substitutions at the NiRAN-RdRp interface augment activation, suggesting that ligand binding to the NiRAN catalytic site modulates RdRp activity. The existence of allosterically linked nucleotidyl transferase sites that utilize the same substrates has important implications for understanding the mechanism of SARS-CoV-2 replication and the design of its inhibitors. IMPORTANCE In vitro interrogations of the central replicative complex of SARS-CoV-2, RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp), by structural, biochemical, and biophysical methods yielded an unprecedented windfall of information that, in turn, instructs drug development and administration, genomic surveillance, and other aspects of the evolving pandemic response. They also illuminated the vast disparity in the methods used to produce RdRp for experimental work and the hidden impact that this has on enzyme activity and research outcomes. In this report, we elucidate the positive and negative effects of codon optimization on the activity and folding of the recombinant RdRp and detail the design of a highly sensitive in vitro assay of RdRp-dependent RNA synthesis. Using this assay, we demonstrate that RdRp is allosterically activated by nontemplating phosphorylated nucleotides, including naturally occurring alarmone ppGpp and synthetic remdesivir triphosphate.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Triphosphate/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Guanosine Tetraphosphate/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Adenosine Triphosphate/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Catalytic Domain/physiology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Humans , Ribosomes/metabolism
18.
J Am Soc Mass Spectrom ; 32(7): 1618-1630, 2021 Jul 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1267989

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus (CoV) nonstructural proteins (nsps) assemble to form the replication-transcription complex (RTC) responsible for viral RNA synthesis. nsp7 and nsp8 are important cofactors of the RTC, as they interact and regulate the activity of RNA-dependent RNA polymerase and other nsps. To date, no structure of the full-length SARS-CoV-2 nsp7:nsp8 complex has been published. The current understanding of this complex is based on structures from truncated constructs, with missing electron densities, or from related CoV species where SARS-CoV-2 nsp7 and nsp8 share upward of 90% sequence identity. Despite available structures solved using crystallography and cryo-EM representing detailed static snapshots of the nsp7:nsp8 complex, it is evident that the complex has a high degree of structural plasticity. However, relatively little is known about the conformational dynamics of the individual proteins and how they complex to interact with other nsps. Here, the solution-based structural proteomic techniques, hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry (HDX-MS) and cross-linking mass spectrometry (XL-MS), illuminate the dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 full-length nsp7 and nsp8 proteins and the nsp7:nsp8 protein complex. Results presented from the two techniques are complementary and validate the interaction surfaces identified from the published three-dimensional heterotetrameric crystal structure of the SARS-CoV-2 truncated nsp7:nsp8 complex. Furthermore, mapping of XL-MS data onto higher-order complexes suggests that SARS-CoV-2 nsp7 and nsp8 do not assemble into a hexadecameric structure as implied by the SARS-CoV full-length nsp7:nsp8 crystal structure. Instead, our results suggest that the nsp7:nsp8 heterotetramer can dissociate into a stable dimeric unit that might bind to nsp12 in the RTC without significantly altering nsp7-nsp8 interactions.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Proteomics/methods , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Humans , Hydrogen Deuterium Exchange-Mass Spectrometry , Models, Molecular , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
19.
PLoS One ; 16(6): e0248479, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1266543

ABSTRACT

The Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2 has become a global pandemic in a very short time span. Currently, there is no specific treatment or vaccine to counter this highly contagious disease. There is an urgent need to find a specific cure for the disease and global efforts are directed at developing SARS-CoV-2 specific antivirals and immunomodulators. Ayurvedic Rasayana therapy has been traditionally used in India for its immunomodulatory and adaptogenic effects, and more recently has been included as therapeutic adjuvant for several maladies. Amongst several others, Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha), Tinospora cordifolia (Guduchi) and Asparagus racemosus (Shatavari) play an important role in Rasayana therapy. The objective of this study was to explore the immunomodulatory and anti SARS-CoV2 potential of phytoconstituents from Ashwagandha, Guduchi and Shatavari using network pharmacology and docking. The plant extracts were prepared as per ayurvedic procedures and a total of 31 phytoconstituents were identified using UHPLC-PDA and mass spectrometry studies. To assess the immunomodulatory potential of these phytoconstituents an in-silico network pharmacology model was constructed. The model predicts that the phytoconstituents possess the potential to modulate several targets in immune pathways potentially providing a protective role. To explore if these phytoconstituents also possess antiviral activity, docking was performed with the Spike protein, Main Protease and RNA dependent RNA polymerase of the virus. Interestingly, several phytoconstituents are predicted to possess good affinity for the three targets, suggesting their application for the termination of viral life cycle. Further, predictive tools indicate that there would not be adverse herb-drug pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic interactions with concomitantly administered drug therapy. We thus make a compelling case to evaluate the potential of these Rasayana botanicals as therapeutic adjuvants in the management of COVID-19 following rigorous experimental validation.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Asparagus Plant/chemistry , COVID-19/metabolism , Immunologic Factors/metabolism , Molecular Docking Simulation/methods , Plant Extracts/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Tinospora/chemistry , Withania/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacokinetics , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Herb-Drug Interactions , Humans , Immunologic Factors/pharmacokinetics , India , Medicine, Ayurvedic/methods , Phytotherapy/methods , Plant Extracts/pharmacokinetics , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
20.
Science ; 373(6551): 236-241, 2021 07 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1266364

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causal agent of COVID-19, uses an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) for the replication of its genome and the transcription of its genes. We found that the catalytic subunit of the RdRp, nsp12, ligates two iron-sulfur metal cofactors in sites that were modeled as zinc centers in the available cryo-electron microscopy structures of the RdRp complex. These metal binding sites are essential for replication and for interaction with the viral helicase. Oxidation of the clusters by the stable nitroxide TEMPOL caused their disassembly, potently inhibited the RdRp, and blocked SARS-CoV-2 replication in cell culture. These iron-sulfur clusters thus serve as cofactors for the SARS-CoV-2 RdRp and are targets for therapy of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coenzymes/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Cyclic N-Oxides/pharmacology , Iron/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Sulfur/metabolism , Amino Acid Motifs , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Binding Sites , Catalytic Domain , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coenzymes/chemistry , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Iron/chemistry , Protein Domains , RNA Helicases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spin Labels , Sulfur/chemistry , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication/drug effects , Zinc/metabolism
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL
...