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1.
Nat Methods ; 19(11): 1376-1382, 2022 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2151063

ABSTRACT

Machine-learning prediction algorithms such as AlphaFold and RoseTTAFold can create remarkably accurate protein models, but these models usually have some regions that are predicted with low confidence or poor accuracy. We hypothesized that by implicitly including new experimental information such as a density map, a greater portion of a model could be predicted accurately, and that this might synergistically improve parts of the model that were not fully addressed by either machine learning or experiment alone. An iterative procedure was developed in which AlphaFold models are automatically rebuilt on the basis of experimental density maps and the rebuilt models are used as templates in new AlphaFold predictions. We show that including experimental information improves prediction beyond the improvement obtained with simple rebuilding guided by the experimental data. This procedure for AlphaFold modeling with density has been incorporated into an automated procedure for interpretation of crystallographic and electron cryo-microscopy maps.


Subject(s)
Algorithms , Proteins , Models, Molecular , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Proteins/chemistry , Machine Learning , Protein Conformation
2.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1210, 2022 Nov 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2116524

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is a lipid-enveloped Betacoronavirus and cause of the Covid-19 pandemic. To study the three-dimensional architecture of the virus, we perform electron cryotomography (cryo-ET) on SARS-Cov-2 virions and three variants revealing particles of regular cylindrical morphology. The ribonucleoprotein particles packaging the genome in the virion interior form a dense, double layer assembly with a cylindrical shape related to the overall particle morphology. This organisation suggests structural interactions important to virus assembly.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Pandemics , Electrons , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Virion
3.
J Chem Inf Model ; 62(20): 4916-4927, 2022 10 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062143

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is the causative agent of the COVID-19 outbreak that is affecting the entire planet. As the pandemic is still spreading worldwide, with multiple mutations of the virus, it is of interest and of help to employ computational methods for identifying potential inhibitors of the enzymes responsible for viral replication. Attractive antiviral nucleotide analogue RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) chain terminator inhibitors are investigated with this purpose. This study, based on molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, addresses the important aspects of the incorporation of an endogenously synthesized nucleoside triphosphate, ddhCTP, in comparison with the natural nucleobase cytidine triphosphate (CTP) in RdRp. The ddhCTP species is the product of the viperin antiviral protein as part of the innate immune response. The absence of the ribose 3'-OH in ddhCTP could have important implications in its inhibitory mechanism of RdRp. We built an in silico model of the RNA strand embedded in RdRp using experimental methods, starting from the cryo-electron microscopy structure and exploiting the information obtained by spectrometry on the RNA sequence. We determined that the model was stable during the MD simulation time. The obtained results provide deeper insights into the incorporation of nucleoside triphosphates, whose molecular mechanism by the RdRp active site still remains elusive.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cytidine Triphosphate , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Cytidine Triphosphate/chemistry , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Nucleosides , Nucleotides , Ribose , RNA, Viral , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/antagonists & inhibitors , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism
4.
Eur Biophys J ; 51(7-8): 555-568, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2048214

ABSTRACT

Protein structures may be used to draw functional implications at the residue level, but how sensitive are these implications to the exact structure used? Calculation of the effects of SARS-CoV-2 S-protein mutations based on experimental cryo-electron microscopy structures have been abundant during the pandemic. To understand the precision of such estimates, we studied three distinct methods to estimate stability changes for all possible mutations in 23 different S-protein structures (3.69 million ΔΔG values in total) and explored how random and systematic errors can be remedied by structure-averaged mutation group comparisons. We show that computational estimates have low precision, due to method and structure heterogeneity making results for single mutations uninformative. However, structure-averaged differences in mean effects for groups of substitutions can yield significant results. Illustrating this protocol, functionally important natural mutations, despite individual variations, average to a smaller stability impact compared to other possible mutations, independent of conformational state (open, closed). In summary, we document substantial issues with precision in structure-based protein modeling and recommend sensitivity tests to quantify these effects, but also suggest partial solutions to the problem in the form of structure-averaged "ensemble" estimates for groups of residues when multiple structures are available.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Cryoelectron Microscopy , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Models, Molecular , Mutation , Proteins/genetics
5.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(19)2022 Sep 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2043767

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the pathogenic cause of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) of SARS-CoV-2 is a potential target for the treatment of COVID-19. An RdRp complex:dsRNA structure suitable for docking simulations was prepared using a cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structure (PDB ID: 7AAP; resolution, 2.60 Å) that was reported recently. Structural refinement was performed using energy calculations. Structure-based virtual screening was performed using the ChEMBL database. Through 1,838,257 screenings, 249 drugs (37 approved, 93 clinical, and 119 preclinical drugs) were predicted to exhibit a high binding affinity for the RdRp complex:dsRNA. Nine nucleoside triphosphate analogs with anti-viral activity were included among these hit drugs, and among them, remdesivir-ribonucleoside triphosphate and favipiravir-ribonucleoside triphosphate adopted a similar docking mode as that observed in the cryo-EM structure. Additional docking simulations for the predicted compounds with high binding affinity for the RdRp complex:dsRNA suggested that 184 bioactive compounds could be anti-SARS-CoV-2 drug candidates. The hit bioactive compounds mainly consisted of a typical noncovalent major groove binder for dsRNA. Three-layer ONIOM (MP2/6-31G:AM1:AMBER) geometry optimization calculations and frequency analyses (MP2/6-31G:AMBER) were performed to estimate the binding free energy of a representative bioactive compound obtained from the docking simulation, and the fragment molecular orbital calculation at the MP2/6-31G level of theory was subsequently performed for analyzing the detailed interactions. The procedure used in this study represents a possible strategy for discovering anti-SARS-CoV-2 drugs from drug libraries that could significantly shorten the clinical development period for drug repositioning.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Ribonucleosides , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Amides , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Nucleosides , Polyphosphates , Pyrazines , RNA, Viral , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , Reproduction , Ribonucleosides/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 4399, 2022 08 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2042318

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus membrane protein (M) is the most abundant viral structural protein and plays a central role in virus assembly and morphogenesis. However, the process of M protein-driven virus assembly are largely unknown. Here, we report the cryo-electron microscopy structure of the SARS-CoV-2 M protein in two different conformations. M protein forms a mushroom-shaped dimer, composed of two transmembrane domain-swapped three-helix bundles and two intravirion domains. M protein further assembles into higher-order oligomers. A highly conserved hinge region is key for conformational changes. The M protein dimer is unexpectedly similar to SARS-CoV-2 ORF3a, a viral ion channel. Moreover, the interaction analyses of M protein with nucleocapsid protein (N) and RNA suggest that the M protein mediates the concerted recruitment of these components through the positively charged intravirion domain. Our data shed light on the M protein-driven virus assembly mechanism and provide a structural basis for therapeutic intervention targeting M protein.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Membrane Proteins , Virus Assembly
7.
Science ; 369(6511): 1586-1592, 2020 09 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2038226

ABSTRACT

Intervention strategies are urgently needed to control the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. The trimeric viral spike (S) protein catalyzes fusion between viral and target cell membranes to initiate infection. Here, we report two cryo-electron microscopy structures derived from a preparation of the full-length S protein, representing its prefusion (2.9-angstrom resolution) and postfusion (3.0-angstrom resolution) conformations, respectively. The spontaneous transition to the postfusion state is independent of target cells. The prefusion trimer has three receptor-binding domains clamped down by a segment adjacent to the fusion peptide. The postfusion structure is strategically decorated by N-linked glycans, suggesting possible protective roles against host immune responses and harsh external conditions. These findings advance our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 entry and may guide the development of vaccines and therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Cryoelectron Microscopy , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Protein Domains , Protein Multimerization , Protein Structure, Secondary , Receptors, Virus/chemistry , Virus Internalization
8.
J Virol ; 96(17): e0081422, 2022 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2001773

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is transmitted between humans and minks, and some mutations in the spike (S) protein, especially in the receptor-binding domain (RBD), have been identified in mink-derived viruses. Here, we examined binding of the mink angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor to mink-derived and important human-originating variants, and we demonstrated that most of the RBD variants increased the binding affinities to mink ACE2 (mkACE2). Cryo-electron microscopy structures of the mkACE2-RBD Y453F (with a Y-to-F change at position 453) and mkACE2-RBD F486L complexes helped identify the key residues that facilitate changes in mkACE2 binding affinity. Additionally, the data indicated that the Y453F and F486L mutations reduced the binding affinities to some human monoclonal antibodies, and human vaccinated sera efficiently prevented infection of human cells by pseudoviruses expressing Y453F, F486L, or N501T RBD. Our findings provide an important molecular mechanism for the rapid adaptation of SARS-CoV-2 in minks and highlight the potential influence of the main mink-originating variants for humans. IMPORTANCE Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has a broad range of hosts. Mink-derived SARS-CoV-2 can transmit back to humans. There is an urgent need to understand the binding mechanism of mink-derived SARS-CoV-2 variants to mink receptor. In this study, we identified all mutations in the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of spike (S) protein from mink-derived SARS-CoV-2, and we demonstrated the enhanced binding affinity of mink angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) to most of the mink-derived RBD variants as well as important human-originating RBD variants. Cryo-electron microscopy structures revealed that the Y453F and F486L mutations enhanced the binding forces in the interaction interface. In addition, Y453F and F486L mutations reduced the binding affinities to some human monoclonal antibodies, and the SARS-CoV-2 pseudoviruses with Y453F, F486L, or N501T mutations were neutralized by human vaccinated sera. Therefore, our results provide valuable information for understanding the cross-species transmission mechanism of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19/veterinary , Mink , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Mutation , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
9.
Science ; 377(6608): 819-820, 2022 08 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2001760

ABSTRACT

Molecular structures provide a road map for understanding and controlling B cell receptor activation.


Subject(s)
CD79 Antigens , Immunoglobulin M , CD79 Antigens/chemistry , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Immunoglobulin M/chemistry , Protein Conformation
10.
Sci Adv ; 8(33): eabo3153, 2022 08 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2001755

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 cell entry is completed after viral spike (S) protein-mediated membrane fusion between viral and host cell membranes. Stable prefusion and postfusion S structures have been resolved by cryo-electron microscopy and cryo-electron tomography, but the refolding intermediates on the fusion pathway are transient and have not been examined. We used an antiviral lipopeptide entry inhibitor to arrest S protein refolding and thereby capture intermediates as S proteins interact with hACE2 and fusion-activating proteases on cell-derived target membranes. Cryo-electron tomography imaged both extended and partially folded intermediate states of S2, as well as a novel late-stage conformation on the pathway to membrane fusion. The intermediates now identified in this dynamic S protein-directed fusion provide mechanistic insights that may guide the design of CoV entry inhibitors.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Virus Internalization
11.
Methods Enzymol ; 675: 299-321, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1995924

ABSTRACT

Mutations on the spike (S) protein of SARS-CoV-2 could induce structural changes that help increase viral transmissibility and enhance resistance to antibody neutralization. Here, we report a robust workflow to prepare recombinant S protein variants and its host receptor angiotensin-convert enzyme 2 (ACE2) by using a mammalian cell expression system. The functional states of the S protein variants are investigated by cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and negative staining electron microscopy (NSEM) to visualize their molecular structures in response to mutations, receptor binding, antibody binding, and environmental changes. The folding stabilities of the S protein variants can be deduced from morphological changes based on NSEM imaging analysis. Differential scanning calorimetry provides thermodynamic information to complement NSEM. Impacts of the mutations on host receptor binding and antibody neutralization are in vitro by kinetic binding analyses in addition to atomic insights gleaned from cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM). This experimental strategy is generally applicable to studying the molecular basis of host-pathogen interactions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensins/genetics , Angiotensins/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/genetics , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Mammals/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Mutation , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , Receptors, Virus/chemistry , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Structure-Activity Relationship
12.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 119(34): e2204256119, 2022 08 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1991767

ABSTRACT

Antibody therapeutics for the treatment of COVID-19 have been highly successful. However, the recent emergence of the Omicron variant has posed a challenge, as it evades detection by most existing SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies (nAbs). Here, we successfully generated a panel of SARS-CoV-2/SARS-CoV cross-neutralizing antibodies by sequential immunization of the two pseudoviruses. Of the potential candidates, we found that nAbs X01, X10, and X17 offer broad neutralizing potential against most variants of concern, with X17 further identified as a Class 5 nAb with undiminished neutralization against the Omicron variant. Cryo-electron microscopy structures of the three antibodies together in complex with each of the spike proteins of the prototypical SARS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, and Delta and Omicron variants of SARS-CoV-2 defined three nonoverlapping conserved epitopes on the receptor-binding domain. The triple-antibody mixture exhibited enhanced resistance to viral evasion and effective protection against infection of the Beta variant in hamsters. Our findings will aid the development of antibody therapeutics and broad vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 and its emerging variants.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Epitopes , SARS Virus , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Conserved Sequence , Cricetinae , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Epitopes/immunology , Humans , Mice , Neutralization Tests , SARS Virus/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
13.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 119(33): e2208144119, 2022 08 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1984601

ABSTRACT

Pattern recognition molecules (PRMs) form an important part of innate immunity, where they facilitate the response to infections and damage by triggering processes such as inflammation. The pentraxin family of soluble PRMs comprises long and short pentraxins, with the former containing unique N-terminal regions unrelated to other proteins or each other. No complete high-resolution structural information exists about long pentraxins, unlike the short pentraxins, where there is an abundance of both X-ray and cryoelectron microscopy (cryo-EM)-derived structures. This study presents a high-resolution structure of the prototypical long pentraxin, PTX3. Cryo-EM yielded a 2.5-Å map of the C-terminal pentraxin domains that revealed a radically different quaternary structure compared to other pentraxins, comprising a glycosylated D4 symmetrical octameric complex stabilized by an extensive disulfide network. The cryo-EM map indicated α-helices that extended N terminal of the pentraxin domains that were not fully resolved. AlphaFold was used to predict the remaining N-terminal structure of the octameric PTX3 complex, revealing two long tetrameric coiled coils with two hinge regions, which was validated using classification of cryo-EM two-dimensional averages. The resulting hybrid cryo-EM/AlphaFold structure allowed mapping of ligand binding sites, such as C1q and fibroblast growth factor-2, as well as rationalization of previous biochemical data. Given the relevance of PTX3 in conditions ranging from COVID-19 prognosis, cancer progression, and female infertility, this structure could be used to inform the understanding and rational design of therapies for these disorders and processes.


Subject(s)
C-Reactive Protein , Complement Activation , Serum Amyloid P-Component , Binding Sites , C-Reactive Protein/chemistry , C-Reactive Protein/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Female , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Ligands , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Domains , Serum Amyloid P-Component/chemistry
14.
Cell Rep ; 40(8): 111276, 2022 08 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1982702

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike is the target for neutralizing antibodies elicited following both infection and vaccination. While extensive research has shown that the receptor binding domain (RBD) and, to a lesser extent, the N-terminal domain (NTD) are the predominant targets for neutralizing antibodies, identification of neutralizing epitopes beyond these regions is important for informing vaccine development and understanding antibody-mediated immune escape. Here, we identify a class of broadly neutralizing antibodies that bind an epitope on the spike subdomain 1 (SD1) and that have arisen from infection or vaccination. Using cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and hydrogen-deuterium exchange coupled to mass spectrometry (HDX-MS), we show that SD1-specific antibody P008_60 binds an epitope that is not accessible within the canonical prefusion states of the SARS-CoV-2 spike, suggesting a transient conformation of the viral glycoprotein that is vulnerable to neutralization.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Epitopes , Humans , Neutralization Tests , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Syndactyly , Vaccination
15.
Trends Biochem Sci ; 47(2): 173-186, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1400539

ABSTRACT

Viruses are macromolecular machineries that hijack cellular metabolism for replication. Enveloped viruses comprise a large variety of RNA and DNA viruses, many of which are notorious human or animal pathogens. Despite their importance, the presence of lipid bilayers in their assembly has made most enveloped viruses too pleomorphic to be reconstructed as a whole by traditional structural biology methods. Furthermore, structural biology of the viral lifecycle was hindered by the sample thickness. Here, I review the recent advances in the applications of cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET) on enveloped viral structures and intracellular viral activities.


Subject(s)
Electron Microscope Tomography , Viruses , Animals , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Electron Microscope Tomography/methods , Lipid Bilayers , Viruses/chemistry , Viruses/metabolism
16.
J Vis Exp ; (185)2022 07 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1974967

ABSTRACT

Interest in liquid-electron microscopy (liquid-EM) has skyrocketed in recent years as scientists can now observe real-time processes at the nanoscale. It is extremely desirable to pair high-resolution cryo-EM information with dynamic observations as many events occur at rapid timescales - in the millisecond range or faster. Improved knowledge of flexible structures can also assist in the design of novel reagents to combat emerging pathogens, such as SARS-CoV-2. More importantly, viewing biological materials in a fluid environment provides a unique glimpse of their performance in the human body. Presented here are newly developed methods to investigate the nanoscale properties of virus assemblies in liquid and vitreous ice. To accomplish this goal, well-defined samples were used as model systems. Side-by-side comparisons of sample preparation methods and representative structural information are presented. Sub-nanometer features are shown for structures resolved in the range of ~3.5-Å-10 Å. Other recent results that support this complementary framework include dynamic insights of vaccine candidates and antibody-based therapies imaged in liquid. Overall, these correlative applications advance our ability to visualize molecular dynamics, providing a unique context for their use in human health and disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Ice , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Specimen Handling
17.
J Virol ; 96(16): e0048022, 2022 08 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1973787

ABSTRACT

The continuous emergence of novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants poses new challenges in the fight against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The newly emerging Omicron strain caused serious immune escape and raised unprecedented concern all over the world. The development of an antibody targeting a conserved and universal epitope is urgently needed. A subset of neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) against COVID-19 from convalescent patients were isolated in our previous study. In this study, we investigated the accommodation of these NAbs to SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs), revealing that IgG 553-49 neutralizes pseudovirus of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant. In addition, we determined the cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structure of the SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein complexed with three monoclonal antibodies targeting different epitopes, including 553-49, 553-15, and 553-60. Notably, 553-49 targets a novel conserved epitope and neutralizes the virus by disassembling S trimers. IgG 553-15, an antibody that neutralizes all of the VOCs except Omicron, cross-links two S trimers to form a trimer dimer, demonstrating that 553-15 neutralizes the virus by steric hindrance and virion aggregation. These findings suggest the potential to develop 553-49 and other antibodies targeting this highly conserved epitope as promising therapeutic reagents for COVID-19. IMPORTANCE The emergence of the Omicron strain of SARS-CoV-2 caused higher immune escape, raising unprecedented concerns about the effectiveness of antibody therapies and vaccines. In this study, we identified a SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody, 553-49, which neutralizes all variants by targeting a completely conserved novel epitope. In addition, we revealed that IgG 553-15 neutralizes SARS-CoV-2 by cross-linking virions and that 553-60 functions by blocking receptor binding. Comparison of different receptor binding domain (RBD) epitopes revealed that the 553-49 epitope is hidden in the S trimer and keeps a high degree of conservation during SARS-CoV-2 evolution, making 553-49 a promising therapeutic reagent against the emerging Omicron and future variants of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Epitopes , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
18.
Faraday Discuss ; 240(0): 196-209, 2022 Nov 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1972674

ABSTRACT

Cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) has recently been established as a powerful technique for solving macromolecular structures. Although the best resolutions achievable are improving, a significant majority of data are still resolved at resolutions worse than 3 Å, where it is non-trivial to build or fit atomic models. The map reconstructions and atomic models derived from the maps are also prone to errors accumulated through the different stages of data processing. Here, we highlight the need to evaluate both model geometry and fit to data at different resolutions. Assessment of cryo-EM structures from SARS-CoV-2 highlights a bias towards optimising the model geometry to agree with the most common conformations, compared to the agreement with data. We present the CoVal web service which provides multiple validation metrics to reflect the quality of atomic models derived from cryo-EM data of structures from SARS-CoV-2. We demonstrate that further refinement can lead to improvement of the agreement with data without the loss of geometric quality. We also discuss the recent CCP-EM developments aimed at addressing some of the current shortcomings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Models, Molecular , Protein Conformation , Software
19.
J Vis Exp ; (185)2022 07 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1964147

ABSTRACT

Cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET) has been gaining momentum in recent years, especially since the introduction of direct electron detectors, improved automated acquisition strategies, preparative techniques that expand the possibilities of what the electron microscope can image at high-resolution using cryo-ET and new subtomogram averaging software. Additionally, data acquisition has become increasingly streamlined, making it more accessible to many users. The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has further accelerated remote cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) data collection, especially for single-particle cryo-EM, in many facilities globally, providing uninterrupted user access to state-of-the-art instruments during the pandemic. With the recent advances in Tomo5 (software for 3D electron tomography), remote cryo-ET data collection has become robust and easy to handle from anywhere in the world. This article aims to provide a detailed walk-through, starting from the data collection setup in the tomography software for the process of a (remote) cryo-ET data collection session with detailed troubleshooting. The (remote) data collection protocol is further complemented with the workflow for structure determination at near-atomic resolution by subtomogram averaging with emClarity, using apoferritin as an example.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Electron Microscope Tomography , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Data Collection , Electron Microscope Tomography/methods , Humans , Image Processing, Computer-Assisted/methods , SARS-CoV-2
20.
Nat Microbiol ; 7(9): 1376-1389, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1960379

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant has very high levels of transmission, is resistant to neutralization by authorized therapeutic human monoclonal antibodies (mAb) and is less sensitive to vaccine-mediated immunity. To provide additional therapies against Omicron, we isolated a mAb named P2G3 from a previously infected vaccinated donor and showed that it has picomolar-range neutralizing activity against Omicron BA.1, BA.1.1, BA.2 and all other variants tested. We solved the structure of P2G3 Fab in complex with the Omicron spike using cryo-electron microscopy at 3.04 Å resolution to identify the P2G3 epitope as a Class 3 mAb that is different from mAb-binding spike epitopes reported previously. Using a SARS-CoV-2 Omicron monkey challenge model, we show that P2G3 alone, or in combination with P5C3 (a broadly active Class 1 mAb previously identified), confers complete prophylactic or therapeutic protection. Although we could select for SARS-CoV-2 mutants escaping neutralization by P2G3 or by P5C3 in vitro, they had low infectivity and 'escape' mutations are extremely rare in public sequence databases. We conclude that this combination of mAbs has potential as an anti-Omicron drug.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Viral , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Epitopes , Haplorhini , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins , Neutralization Tests , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
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