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1.
J Virol ; 95(19): e0086121, 2021 09 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486519

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the viral pathogen causing the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) global pandemic. No effective treatment for COVID-19 has been established yet. The serine protease transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2) is essential for viral spread and pathogenicity by facilitating the entry of SARS-CoV-2 into host cells. The protease inhibitor camostat, an anticoagulant used in the clinic, has potential anti-inflammatory and antiviral activities against COVID-19. However, the potential mechanisms of viral resistance and antiviral activity of camostat are unclear. Herein, we demonstrate high inhibitory potencies of camostat for a panel of serine proteases, indicating that camostat is a broad-spectrum inhibitor of serine proteases. In addition, we determined the crystal structure of camostat in complex with a serine protease (uPA [urokinase-type plasminogen activator]), which reveals that camostat is inserted in the S1 pocket of uPA but is hydrolyzed by uPA, and the cleaved camostat covalently binds to Ser195. We also generated a homology model of the structure of the TMPRSS2 serine protease domain. The model shows that camostat uses the same inhibitory mechanism to inhibit the activity of TMPRSS2, subsequently preventing SARS-CoV-2 spread. IMPORTANCE Serine proteases are a large family of enzymes critical for multiple physiological processes and proven diagnostic and therapeutic targets in several clinical indications. The serine protease transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2) was recently found to mediate SARS-CoV-2 entry into the host. Camostat mesylate (FOY 305), a serine protease inhibitor active against TMPRSS2 and used for the treatment of oral squamous cell carcinoma and chronic pancreatitis, inhibits SARS-CoV-2 infection of human lung cells. However, the direct inhibition mechanism of camostat mesylate for TMPRSS2 is unclear. Herein, we demonstrate that camostat uses the same inhibitory mechanism to inhibit the activity of TMPRSS2 as uPA, subsequently preventing SARS-CoV-2 spread.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Esters/pharmacology , Guanidines/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/pharmacology , Serine Proteases/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/prevention & control , Carcinoma, Squamous Cell , Esters/chemistry , Esters/metabolism , Guanidines/chemistry , Guanidines/metabolism , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mouth Neoplasms , Protein Domains , Sequence Alignment , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Serine Proteases/chemistry , Serine Proteases/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Virus Internalization/drug effects
2.
ACS Chem Biol ; 16(9): 1692-1700, 2021 09 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1366786

ABSTRACT

The pro-protein convertase furin is a highly specific serine protease involved in the proteolytic maturation of many proteins in the secretory pathway. It also activates surface proteins of many viruses including the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Furin inhibitors effectively suppress viral replication and thus are promising antiviral therapeutics with broad application potential. Polybasic substrate-like ligands typically trigger conformational changes shifting furin's active site cleft from the OFF-state to the ON-state. Here, we solved the X-ray structures of furin in complex with four different arginine mimetic compounds with reduced basicity. These guanylhydrazone-based inhibitor complexes showed for the first time an active site-directed binding mode to furin's OFF-state conformation. The compounds undergo unique interactions within the S1 pocket, largely different compared to substrate-like ligands. A second binding site was identified at the S4/S5 pocket of furin. Crystallography-based titration experiments confirmed the S1 site as the primary binding pocket. We also tested the proprotein convertases PC5/6 and PC7 for inhibition by guanylhydrazones and found an up to 7-fold lower potency for PC7. Interestingly, the observed differences in the Ki values correlated with the sequence conservation of the PCs at the allosteric sodium binding site. Therefore, OFF-state-specific targeting of furin can serve as a valuable strategy for structure-based development of PC-selective small-molecule inhibitors.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Furin/antagonists & inhibitors , Guanidines/metabolism , Hydrazones/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Catalytic Domain , Crystallography, X-Ray , Enzyme Assays , Furin/chemistry , Furin/metabolism , Guanidines/chemistry , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Hydrazones/chemistry , Kinetics , Proprotein Convertase 5/antagonists & inhibitors , Proprotein Convertase 5/chemistry , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Subtilisins/antagonists & inhibitors , Subtilisins/chemistry
3.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(13)2021 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1288905

ABSTRACT

Positively charged groups that mimic arginine or lysine in a natural substrate of trypsin are necessary for drugs to inhibit the trypsin-like serine protease TMPRSS2 that is involved in the viral entry and spread of coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2. Based on this assumption, we identified a set of 13 approved or clinically investigational drugs with positively charged guanidinobenzoyl and/or aminidinobenzoyl groups, including the experimentally verified TMPRSS2 inhibitors Camostat and Nafamostat. Molecular docking using the C-I-TASSER-predicted TMPRSS2 catalytic domain model suggested that the guanidinobenzoyl or aminidinobenzoyl group in all the drugs could form putative salt bridge interactions with the side-chain carboxyl group of Asp435 located in the S1 pocket of TMPRSS2. Molecular dynamics simulations further revealed the high stability of the putative salt bridge interactions over long-time (100 ns) simulations. The molecular mechanics/generalized Born surface area-binding free energy assessment and per-residue energy decomposition analysis also supported the strong binding interactions between TMPRSS2 and the proposed drugs. These results suggest that the proposed compounds, in addition to Camostat and Nafamostat, could be effective TMPRSS2 inhibitors for COVID-19 treatment by occupying the S1 pocket with the hallmark positively charged groups.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Benzamidines/chemistry , Benzamidines/metabolism , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Catalytic Domain , Esters/chemistry , Esters/metabolism , Guanidines/chemistry , Guanidines/metabolism , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Thermodynamics
4.
Chem Biol Interact ; 338: 109428, 2021 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1103757

ABSTRACT

Camostat mesylate, a potent inhibitor of the human transmembrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2), is currently under investigation for its effectiveness in COVID-19 patients. For its safe application, the risks of camostat mesylate to induce pharmacokinetic drug-drug interactions with co-administered drugs should be known. We therefore tested in vitro the potential inhibition of important efflux (P-glycoprotein (P-gp, ABCB1), breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP, ABCG2)), and uptake transporters (organic anion transporting polypeptides OATP1B1, OATP1B3, OATP2B1) by camostat mesylate and its active metabolite 4-(4-guanidinobenzoyloxy)phenylacetic acid (GBPA). Transporter inhibition was evaluated using fluorescent probe substrates in transporter over-expressing cell lines and compared to the respective parental cell lines. Moreover, possible mRNA induction of pharmacokinetically relevant genes regulated by the nuclear pregnane X receptor (PXR) and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) was analysed in LS180 cells by quantitative real-time PCR. The results of our study for the first time demonstrated that camostat mesylate and GBPA do not relevantly inhibit P-gp, BCRP, OATP1B1 or OATP1B3. Only OATP2B1 was profoundly inhibited by GBPA with an IC50 of 11 µM. Induction experiments in LS180 cells excluded induction of PXR-regulated genes such as cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) and ABCB1 and AhR-regulated genes such as CYP1A1 and CYP1A2 by camostat mesylate and GBPA. Together with the summary of product characteristics of camostat mesylate indicating no inhibition of CYP1A2, 2C9, 2C19, 2D6, and 3A4 in vitro, our data suggest a low potential of camostat mesylate to act as a perpetrator in pharmacokinetic drug-drug interactions. Only inhibition of OATP2B1 by GBPA warrants further investigation.


Subject(s)
Drug Interactions , Esters/metabolism , Guanidines/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/metabolism , ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily G, Member 2/antagonists & inhibitors , ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily G, Member 2/metabolism , Cell Line , Cell Survival/drug effects , Cytochrome P-450 CYP1A1/genetics , Cytochrome P-450 CYP1A1/metabolism , Cytochrome P-450 CYP3A/genetics , Cytochrome P-450 CYP3A/metabolism , Esters/chemistry , Esters/pharmacology , Guanidines/chemistry , Guanidines/pharmacology , Humans , Organic Anion Transporters/antagonists & inhibitors , Organic Anion Transporters/metabolism , Pregnane X Receptor/genetics , Pregnane X Receptor/metabolism , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , Receptors, Aryl Hydrocarbon/genetics , Receptors, Aryl Hydrocarbon/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology
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