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1.
Molecules ; 26(24)2021 Dec 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1572567

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is the name of the disease caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection that occurred in 2019. The virus-host-specific interactions, molecular targets on host cell deaths, and the involved signaling are crucial issues, which become potential targets for treatment. Spike protein, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), cathepsin L-cysteine peptidase, transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2), nonstructural protein 1 (Nsp1), open reading frame 7a (ORF7a), viral main protease (3C-like protease (3CLpro) or Mpro), RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) (Nsp12), non-structural protein 13 (Nsp13) helicase, and papain-like proteinase (PLpro) are molecules associated with SARS-CoV infection and propagation. SARS-CoV-2 can induce host cell death via five kinds of regulated cell death, i.e., apoptosis, necroptosis, pyroptosis, autophagy, and PANoptosis. The mechanisms of these cell deaths are well established and can be disrupted by synthetic small molecules or natural products. There are a variety of compounds proven to play roles in the cell death inhibition, such as pan-caspase inhibitor (z-VAD-fmk) for apoptosis, necrostatin-1 for necroptosis, MCC950, a potent and specific inhibitor of the NLRP3 inflammasome in pyroptosis, and chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine, which can mitigate the corresponding cell death pathways. However, NF-κB signaling is another critical anti-apoptotic or survival route mediated by SARS-CoV-2. Such signaling promotes viral survival, proliferation, and inflammation by inducing the expression of apoptosis inhibitors such as Bcl-2 and XIAP, as well as cytokines, e.g., TNF. As a result, tiny natural compounds functioning as proteasome inhibitors such as celastrol and curcumin can be used to modify NF-κB signaling, providing a responsible method for treating SARS-CoV-2-infected patients. The natural constituents that aid in inhibiting viral infection, progression, and amplification of coronaviruses are also emphasized, which are in the groups of alkaloids, flavonoids, terpenoids, diarylheptanoids, and anthraquinones. Natural constituents derived from medicinal herbs have anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties, as well as inhibitory effects, on the viral life cycle, including viral entry, replication, assembly, and release of COVID-19 virions. The phytochemicals contain a high potential for COVID-19 treatment. As a result, SARS-CoV-2-infected cell death processes and signaling might be of high efficacy for therapeutic targeting effects and yielding encouraging outcomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Cell Death/drug effects , Drug Discovery/methods , Molecular Targeted Therapy/methods , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Amino Acid Chloromethyl Ketones/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Apoptosis/drug effects , Furans/pharmacology , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/pharmacology , Imidazoles/pharmacology , Indenes/pharmacology , Indoles/pharmacology , Necroptosis/drug effects , Phytochemicals/pharmacology , Pyroptosis/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Signal Transduction/drug effects , Sulfonamides/pharmacology , Viral Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors
3.
Mol Neurobiol ; 59(1): 445-458, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1491383

ABSTRACT

In addition to respiratory complications produced by SARS-CoV-2, accumulating evidence suggests that some neurological symptoms are associated with the disease caused by this coronavirus. In this study, we investigated the effects of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein S1 stimulation on neuroinflammation in BV-2 microglia. Analyses of culture supernatants revealed an increase in the production of TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1ß and iNOS/NO. S1 also increased protein levels of phospho-p65 and phospho-IκBα, as well as enhanced DNA binding and transcriptional activity of NF-κB. These effects of the protein were blocked in the presence of BAY11-7082 (1 µM). Exposure of S1 to BV-2 microglia also increased the protein levels of NLRP3 inflammasome and enhanced caspase-1 activity. Increased protein levels of p38 MAPK was observed in BV-2 microglia stimulated with the spike protein S1 (100 ng/ml), an action that was reduced in the presence of SKF 86,002 (1 µM). Results of immunofluorescence microscopy showed an increase in TLR4 protein expression in S1-stimulated BV-2 microglia. Furthermore, pharmacological inhibition with TAK 242 (1 µM) and transfection with TLR4 small interfering RNA resulted in significant reduction in TNF-α and IL-6 production in S1-stimulated BV-2 microglia. These results have provided the first evidence demonstrating S1-induced neuroinflammation in BV-2 microglia. We propose that induction of neuroinflammation by this protein in the microglia is mediated through activation of NF-κB and p38 MAPK, possibly as a result of TLR4 activation. These results contribute to our understanding of some of the mechanisms involved in CNS pathologies of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Microglia/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Animals , Caspase 1/metabolism , Cell Line , Furans/pharmacology , Indenes/pharmacology , Inflammasomes/metabolism , Interleukin-1beta/genetics , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Mice , Microglia/pathology , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Nitric Oxide/metabolism , Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II/metabolism , Nitriles/pharmacology , RNA, Small Interfering , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , Sulfonamides/pharmacology , Sulfones/pharmacology , Toll-Like Receptor 4/metabolism , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/metabolism , p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases/metabolism
4.
Biochem J ; 478(13): 2517-2531, 2021 07 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1290988

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has emerged as the biggest life-threatening disease of this century. Whilst vaccination should provide a long-term solution, this is pitted against the constant threat of mutations in the virus rendering the current vaccines less effective. Consequently, small molecule antiviral agents would be extremely useful to complement the vaccination program. The causative agent of COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, which encodes at least nine enzymatic activities that all have drug targeting potential. The papain-like protease (PLpro) contained in the nsp3 protein generates viral non-structural proteins from a polyprotein precursor, and cleaves ubiquitin and ISG protein conjugates. Here we describe the expression and purification of PLpro. We developed a protease assay that was used to screen a custom compound library from which we identified dihydrotanshinone I and Ro 08-2750 as compounds that inhibit PLpro in protease and isopeptidase assays and also inhibit viral replication in cell culture-based assays.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Small Molecule Libraries/pharmacology , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/pharmacology , Aniline Compounds/pharmacology , Animals , Benzamides/pharmacology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/genetics , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/isolation & purification , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Drug Synergism , Enzyme Assays , Flavins/pharmacology , Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer , Furans/pharmacology , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Inhibitory Concentration 50 , Naphthalenes/pharmacology , Phenanthrenes/pharmacology , Quinones/pharmacology , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Small Molecule Libraries/chemistry , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
5.
J Med Virol ; 93(7): 4454-4460, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1263094

ABSTRACT

Although vaccination campaigns are currently being rolled out to prevent coronavirus disease (COVID-19), antivirals will remain an important adjunct to vaccination. Antivirals against coronaviruses do not exist, hence global drug repurposing efforts have been carried out to identify agents that may provide clinical benefit to patients with COVID-19. Itraconazole, an antifungal agent, has been reported to have activity against animal coronaviruses. Using cell-based phenotypic assays, the in vitro antiviral activity of itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole was assessed against clinical isolates from a German and Belgian patient infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Itraconazole demonstrated antiviral activity in human Caco-2 cells (EC50 = 2.3 µM; 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay). Similarly, its primary metabolite, 17-OH itraconazole, showed inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 activity (EC50 = 3.6 µM). Remdesivir inhibited viral replication with an EC50 = 0.4 µM. Itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole resulted in a viral yield reduction in vitro of approximately 2-log10 and approximately 1-log10 , as measured in both Caco-2 cells and VeroE6-eGFP cells, respectively. The viral yield reduction brought about by remdesivir or GS-441524 (parent nucleoside of the antiviral prodrug remdesivir; positive control) was more pronounced, with an approximately 3-log10 drop and >4-log10 drop in Caco-2 cells and VeroE6-eGFP cells, respectively. Itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole exert in vitro low micromolar activity against SARS-CoV-2. Despite the in vitro antiviral activity, itraconazole did not result in a beneficial effect in hospitalized COVID-19 patients in a clinical study (EudraCT Number: 2020-001243-15).


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Furans/pharmacology , Itraconazole/pharmacology , Pyrroles/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Triazines/pharmacology , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/pharmacology , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
6.
J Med Virol ; 93(7): 4454-4460, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1118165

ABSTRACT

Although vaccination campaigns are currently being rolled out to prevent coronavirus disease (COVID-19), antivirals will remain an important adjunct to vaccination. Antivirals against coronaviruses do not exist, hence global drug repurposing efforts have been carried out to identify agents that may provide clinical benefit to patients with COVID-19. Itraconazole, an antifungal agent, has been reported to have activity against animal coronaviruses. Using cell-based phenotypic assays, the in vitro antiviral activity of itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole was assessed against clinical isolates from a German and Belgian patient infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Itraconazole demonstrated antiviral activity in human Caco-2 cells (EC50 = 2.3 µM; 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay). Similarly, its primary metabolite, 17-OH itraconazole, showed inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 activity (EC50 = 3.6 µM). Remdesivir inhibited viral replication with an EC50 = 0.4 µM. Itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole resulted in a viral yield reduction in vitro of approximately 2-log10 and approximately 1-log10 , as measured in both Caco-2 cells and VeroE6-eGFP cells, respectively. The viral yield reduction brought about by remdesivir or GS-441524 (parent nucleoside of the antiviral prodrug remdesivir; positive control) was more pronounced, with an approximately 3-log10 drop and >4-log10 drop in Caco-2 cells and VeroE6-eGFP cells, respectively. Itraconazole and 17-OH itraconazole exert in vitro low micromolar activity against SARS-CoV-2. Despite the in vitro antiviral activity, itraconazole did not result in a beneficial effect in hospitalized COVID-19 patients in a clinical study (EudraCT Number: 2020-001243-15).


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Furans/pharmacology , Itraconazole/pharmacology , Pyrroles/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Triazines/pharmacology , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/pharmacology , Animals , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
7.
Molecules ; 26(4)2021 Feb 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1110462

ABSTRACT

Currently, SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) has infected people among all countries and is a pandemic as declared by the World Health Organization (WHO). SARS-CoVID-2 main protease is one of the therapeutic drug targets that has been shown to reduce virus replication, and its high-resolution 3D structures in complex with inhibitors have been solved. Previously, we had demonstrated the potential of natural compounds such as serine protease inhibitors eventually leading us to hypothesize that FDA-approved marine drugs have the potential to inhibit the biological activity of SARS-CoV-2 main protease. Initially, field-template and structure-activity atlas models were constructed to understand and explain the molecular features responsible for SARS-CoVID-2 main protease inhibitors, which revealed that Eribulin Mesylate, Plitidepsin, and Trabectedin possess similar characteristics related to SARS-CoVID-2 main protease inhibitors. Later, protein-ligand interactions are studied using ensemble molecular-docking simulations that revealed that marine drugs bind at the active site of the main protease. The three-dimensional reference interaction site model (3D-RISM) studies show that marine drugs displace water molecules at the active site, and interactions observed are favorable. These computational studies eventually paved an interest in further in vitro studies. Finally, these findings are new and indeed provide insights into the role of FDA-approved marine drugs, which are already in clinical use for cancer treatment as a potential alternative to prevent and treat infected people with SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Peptide Hydrolases/chemistry , Peptide Hydrolases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Catalytic Domain , Depsipeptides/chemistry , Depsipeptides/pharmacology , Drug Repositioning , Furans/chemistry , Furans/pharmacology , Humans , Ketones/chemistry , Ketones/pharmacology , Models, Molecular , Molecular Docking Simulation , Peptides, Cyclic , Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Trabectedin/chemistry , Trabectedin/pharmacology , Viral Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Virus Replication/drug effects
8.
SLAS Discov ; 26(3): 336-344, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-934236

ABSTRACT

The reuse of preexisting small molecules for a novel emerging disease threat is a rapid measure to discover unknown applications for previously validated therapies. A pertinent and recent example where such a strategy could be employed is in the fight against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Therapies designed or discovered to target viral proteins also have off-target effects on the host proteome when employed in a complex physiological environment. This study aims to assess these host cell targets for a panel of FDA-approved antiviral compounds including remdesivir, using the cellular thermal shift assay (CETSA) coupled with mass spectrometry (CETSA MS) in noninfected cells. CETSA MS is a powerful method to delineate direct and indirect interactions between small molecules and protein targets in intact cells. Biologically active compounds can induce changes in thermal stability, in their primary binding partners, and in proteins that in turn interact with the direct targets. Such engagement of host targets by antiviral drugs may contribute to the clinical effect against the virus but can also constitute a liability. We present here a comparative study of CETSA molecular target engagement fingerprints of antiviral drugs to better understand the link between off-targets and efficacy.


Subject(s)
ATPases Associated with Diverse Cellular Activities/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Cell Cycle Proteins/metabolism , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical/methods , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Drug Repositioning , Furans/pharmacology , Hep G2 Cells , Humans , Mass Spectrometry , Proteomics/methods , Pyrroles/pharmacology , Triazines/pharmacology , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
9.
Leukemia ; 34(7): 1726-1729, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-459385

ABSTRACT

The scientific community faces an unexpected and urgent challenge related to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and is investigating the role of receptors involved in entry of this virus into cells as well as pathomechanisms leading to a cytokine "storm," which in many cases ends in severe acute respiratory syndrome, fulminant myocarditis and kidney injury. An important question is if it may also damage hematopoietic stem progenitor cells?


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/epidemiology , Hematopoietic Stem Cells/virology , Inflammasomes/immunology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/epidemiology , Acute Kidney Injury/epidemiology , Acute Kidney Injury/immunology , Acute Kidney Injury/prevention & control , Acute Kidney Injury/virology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/prevention & control , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Cytokines/antagonists & inhibitors , Cytokines/genetics , Cytokines/immunology , Furans/pharmacology , Gene Expression Regulation , Hematopoietic Stem Cells/drug effects , Hematopoietic Stem Cells/immunology , Heterocyclic Compounds, 4 or More Rings , Humans , Immunity, Innate/drug effects , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Indenes , Inflammasomes/antagonists & inhibitors , Inflammasomes/genetics , Myocarditis/epidemiology , Myocarditis/immunology , Myocarditis/prevention & control , Myocarditis/virology , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/antagonists & inhibitors , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/genetics , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/immunology , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Pyroptosis/drug effects , Pyroptosis/genetics , Pyroptosis/immunology , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/prevention & control , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/virology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
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