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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.
Biomed Res Int ; 2021: 9982729, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476892

ABSTRACT

The human transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2) protein plays an important role in prostate cancer progression. It also facilitates viral entry into target cells by proteolytically cleaving and activating the S protein of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). In the current study, we used different available tools like SIFT, PolyPhen2.0, PROVEAN, SNAP2, PMut, MutPred2, I-Mutant Suite, MUpro, iStable, ConSurf, ModPred, SwissModel, PROCHECK, Verify3D, and TM-align to identify the most deleterious variants and to explore possible effects on the TMPRSS2 stability, structure, and function. The six missense variants tested were evaluated to have deleterious effects on the protein by SIFT, PolyPhen2.0, PROVEAN, SNAP2, and PMut. Additionally, V160M, G181R, R240C, P335L, G432A, and D435Y variants showed a decrease in stability by at least 2 servers; G181R, G432A, and D435Y are highly conserved and identified posttranslational modifications sites (PTMs) for proteolytic cleavage and ADP-ribosylation using ConSurf and ModPred servers. The 3D structure of TMPRSS2 native and mutants was generated using 7 meq as a template from the SwissModeller group, refined by ModRefiner, and validated using the Ramachandran plot. Hence, this paper can be advantageous to understand the association between these missense variants rs12329760, rs781089181, rs762108701, rs1185182900, rs570454392, and rs867186402 and susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Mutation, Missense , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Binding Sites , Computational Biology/methods , Evolution, Molecular , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Humans , Models, Molecular , Phylogeny , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Protein Conformation , Protein Stability , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism
3.
Mol Cells ; 44(9): 680-687, 2021 Sep 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1444539

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease, COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019), caused by SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2), has a higher case fatality rate in European countries than in others, especially East Asian ones. One potential explanation for this regional difference is the diversity of the viral infection efficiency. Here, we analyzed the allele frequencies of a nonsynonymous variant rs12329760 (V197M) in the TMPRSS2 gene, a key enzyme essential for viral infection and found a significant association between the COVID-19 case fatality rate and the V197M allele frequencies, using over 200,000 present-day and ancient genomic samples. East Asian countries have higher V197M allele frequencies than other regions, including European countries which correlates to their lower case fatality rates. Structural and energy calculation analysis of the V197M amino acid change showed that it destabilizes the TMPRSS2 protein, possibly negatively affecting its ACE2 and viral spike protein processing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/mortality , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , COVID-19/ethnology , Gene Frequency , Humans , Models, Molecular , Mortality , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Republic of Korea , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry
4.
Cells ; 10(9)2021 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1408625

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) is caused by an enveloped, positive-sense, single-stranded RNA virus, referred to as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which belongs to the realm Riboviria, order Nidovirales, family Coronaviridae, genus Betacoronavirus and the species Severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus. This viral disease is characterized by a myriad of varying symptoms, such as pyrexia, cough, hemoptysis, dyspnoea, diarrhea, muscle soreness, dysosmia, lymphopenia and dysgeusia amongst others. The virus mainly infects humans, various other mammals, avian species and some other companion livestock. SARS-CoV-2 cellular entry is primarily accomplished by molecular interaction between the virus's spike (S) protein and the host cell surface receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), although other host cell-associated receptors/factors, such as neuropilin 1 (NRP-1) and neuropilin 2 (NRP-2), C-type lectin receptors (CLRs), as well as proteases such as TMPRSS2 (transmembrane serine protease 2) and furin, might also play a crucial role in infection, tropism, pathogenesis and clinical outcome. Furthermore, several structural and non-structural proteins of the virus themselves are very critical in determining the clinical outcome following infection. Considering such critical role(s) of the abovementioned host cell receptors, associated proteases/factors and virus structural/non-structural proteins (NSPs), it may be quite prudent to therapeutically target them through a multipronged clinical regimen to combat the disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Host Microbial Interactions , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Drug Delivery Systems , Furin/chemistry , Furin/metabolism , Humans , Lectins, C-Type/chemistry , Lectins, C-Type/metabolism , Molecular Structure , Neuropilins/chemistry , Neuropilins/metabolism , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , Receptors, Virus/chemistry , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Treatment Outcome , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Virus Internalization
5.
PLoS One ; 16(8): e0256141, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1362089

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 requires serine protease, transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2), and cysteine proteases, cathepsins B, L (CTSB/L) for entry into host cells. These host proteases activate the spike protein and enable SARS-CoV-2 entry. We herein performed genomic-guided gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) to identify upstream regulatory elements altering the expression of TMPRSS2 and CTSB/L. Further, medicinal compounds were identified based on their effects on gene expression signatures of the modulators of TMPRSS2 and CTSB/L genes. Using this strategy, estradiol and retinoic acid have been identified as putative SARS-CoV-2 alleviation agents. Next, we analyzed drug-gene and gene-gene interaction networks using 809 human targets of SARS-CoV-2 proteins. The network results indicate that estradiol interacts with 370 (45%) and retinoic acid interacts with 251 (31%) human proteins. Interestingly, a combination of estradiol and retinoic acid interacts with 461 (56%) of human proteins, indicating the therapeutic benefits of drug combination therapy. Finally, molecular docking analysis suggests that both the drugs bind to TMPRSS2 and CTSL with the nanomolar to low micromolar affinity. The results suggest that these drugs can simultaneously target both the entry pathways of SARS-CoV-2 and thus can be considered as a potential treatment option for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Cathepsin B/genetics , Cathepsin L/genetics , Estradiol/pharmacology , Genomics/methods , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Tretinoin/pharmacology , Cathepsin B/chemistry , Cathepsin L/chemistry , Databases, Genetic , Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic/drug effects , Gene Regulatory Networks/drug effects , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Models, Molecular , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protein Conformation , Protein Interaction Maps/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Virus Internalization/drug effects
6.
Nutrients ; 13(8)2021 Aug 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1360797

ABSTRACT

Hesperidin (HD) is a common flavanone glycoside isolated from citrus fruits and possesses great potential for cardiovascular protection. Hesperetin (HT) is an aglycone metabolite of HD with high bioavailability. Through the docking simulation, HD and HT have shown their potential to bind to two cellular proteins: transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2) and angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which are required for the cellular entry of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Our results further found that HT and HD suppressed the infection of VeroE6 cells using lentiviral-based pseudo-particles with wild types and variants of SARS-CoV-2 with spike (S) proteins, by blocking the interaction between the S protein and cellular receptor ACE2 and reducing ACE2 and TMPRSS2 expression. In summary, hesperidin is a potential TMPRSS2 inhibitor for the reduction of the SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Hesperidin/chemistry , Hesperidin/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/drug effects , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Vero Cells
7.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(16)2021 Aug 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1354986

ABSTRACT

Human ACE2 and the serine protease TMPRSS2 of novel SARS-CoV-2 are primary entry receptors in host cells. Expression of these genes at the transcriptional level has not been much discussed in detail. The ISRE elements of the ACE2 promoter are a binding site for the ISGF3 complex of the JAK/STAT signaling pathway. TMPRSS2, including IFNß, STAT1, and STAT2, has the PARP1 binding site near to TSS either up or downstream promoter region. It is well documented that PARP1 regulates gene expression at the transcription level. Therefore, to curb virus infection, both promoting type I IFN signaling to boost innate immunity and prevention of virus entry by inhibiting PARP1, ACE2 or TMPRSS2 are safe options. Most importantly, our aim is to attract the attention of the global scientific community towards the codon 72 Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) of p53 and its underneath role in the innate immune response against SARS-CoV-2. Here, we discuss codon 72 SNP of human p53's role in the different innate immune response to restrict virus-mediated mortality rate only in specific parts of the world. In addition, we discuss potential targets and emerging therapies using bioengineered bacteriophage, anti-sense, or CRISPR strategies.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , Binding Sites , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Poly (ADP-Ribose) Polymerase-1/chemistry , Poly (ADP-Ribose) Polymerase-1/genetics , Poly (ADP-Ribose) Polymerase-1/immunology , Poly (ADP-Ribose) Polymerase-1/metabolism , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/immunology , Vaccination , Virus Internalization
8.
Bioengineered ; 12(1): 2836-2850, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1297360

ABSTRACT

Angiotensin I-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), type II transmembrane serine protease 2 and 4 (TMPRSS2 and TMPRSS4) are important receptors for SARS-CoV-2 infection. In this study, the full-length tree shrewACE2 gene was cloned and sequenced, and its biological information was analyzed. The expression levels of ACE2, TMPRSS2 and TMPRSS4 in various tissues or organs of the tree shrew were detected. The results showed that the full-length ACE2 gene in tree shrews was 2,786 bp, and its CDS was 2,418 bp, encoding 805 amino acids. Phylogenetic analysis based on the CDS of ACE2 revealed that tree shrews were more similar to rabbits (85.93%) and humans (85.47%) but far from mice (82.81%) and rats (82.58%). In silico analysis according to the binding site of SARS-CoV-2 with the ACE2 receptor of different species predicted that tree shrews had potential SARS-CoV-2 infection possibility, which was similar to that of rabbits, cats and dogs but significantly higher than that of mice and rats. In addition, various tissues or organs of tree shrews expressed ACE2, TMPRSS2 and TMPRSS4. Among them, the kidney most highly expressed ACE2, followed by the lung and liver. The esophagus, lung, liver, intestine and kidney had relatively high expression levels of TMPRSS2 and TMPRSS4. In general, we reported for the first time the expression of ACE2, TMPRSS2 and TMPRSS4 in various tissues or organs in tree shrews. Our results revealed that tree shrews could be used as a potential animal model to study the mechanism underlying SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/etiology , Membrane Proteins/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Tupaiidae/genetics , Tupaiidae/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , Bioengineering , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/genetics , Computational Biology , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Humans , Male , Membrane Proteins/chemistry , Membrane Proteins/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Phylogeny , Protein Structure, Tertiary , Sequence Homology, Amino Acid , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Structural Homology, Protein , Tissue Distribution , Tupaiidae/virology
9.
Molecules ; 26(13)2021 Jun 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1288958

ABSTRACT

Spanish flu, polio epidemics, and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic are the most profound examples of severe widespread diseases caused by RNA viruses. The coronavirus pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) demands affordable and reliable assays for testing antivirals. To test inhibitors of viral proteases, we have developed an inexpensive high-throughput assay based on fluorescent energy transfer (FRET). We assayed an array of inhibitors for papain-like protease from SARS-CoV-2 and validated it on protease from the tick-borne encephalitis virus to emphasize its versatility. The reaction progress is monitored as loss of FRET signal of the substrate. This robust and reproducible assay can be used for testing the inhibitors in 96- or 384-well plates.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer/methods , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , RNA Viruses/enzymology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/antagonists & inhibitors , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/genetics , Coronavirus Papain-Like Proteases/metabolism , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Encephalitis Viruses, Tick-Borne/enzymology , Fluorescent Dyes/chemistry , Humans , RNA Helicases/antagonists & inhibitors , RNA Helicases/chemistry , RNA Helicases/genetics , RNA Helicases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
10.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(13)2021 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1288906

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease (COVID)-19 is the leading global health threat to date caused by a severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). Recent clinical trials reported that the use of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitors to treat COVID-19 patients could reduce dyspnea and hypoxia, thromboinflammation, hypercoagulability and improve oxygenation. However, the mechanism of action remains unclear. Thus, this study employs structure-based virtual screening (SBVS) to repurpose BTK inhibitors acalabrutinib, dasatinib, evobrutinib, fostamatinib, ibrutinib, inositol 1,3,4,5-tetrakisphosphate, spebrutinib, XL418 and zanubrutinib against SARS-CoV-2. Molecular docking is conducted with BTK inhibitors against structural and nonstructural proteins of SARS-CoV-2 and host targets (ACE2, TMPRSS2 and BTK). Molecular mechanics-generalized Born surface area (MM/GBSA) calculations and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are then carried out on the selected complexes with high binding energy. Ibrutinib and zanubrutinib are found to be the most potent of the drugs screened based on the results of computational studies. Results further show that ibrutinib and zanubrutinib could exploit different mechanisms at the viral entry and replication stage and could be repurposed as potential inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis.


Subject(s)
Adenine/analogs & derivatives , Drug Repositioning , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Piperidines/chemistry , Protein Kinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Pyrazoles/chemistry , Pyrimidines/chemistry , Adenine/chemistry , Adenine/metabolism , Adenine/therapeutic use , Agammaglobulinaemia Tyrosine Kinase/antagonists & inhibitors , Agammaglobulinaemia Tyrosine Kinase/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/antagonists & inhibitors , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Piperidines/metabolism , Piperidines/therapeutic use , Protein Kinase Inhibitors/metabolism , Protein Kinase Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Pyrazoles/metabolism , Pyrazoles/therapeutic use , Pyrimidines/metabolism , Pyrimidines/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Thermodynamics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
11.
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
12.
J Clin Invest ; 131(10)2021 05 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1285140

ABSTRACT

Drugs targeting host proteins can act prophylactically to reduce viral burden early in disease and limit morbidity, even with antivirals and vaccination. Transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2) is a human protease required for SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viral entry and may represent such a target. We hypothesized that drugs selected from proteins related by their tertiary structure, rather than their primary structure, were likely to interact with TMPRSS2. We created a structure-based phylogenetic computational tool named 3DPhyloFold to systematically identify structurally similar serine proteases with known therapeutic inhibitors and demonstrated effective inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro and in vivo. Several candidate compounds, avoralstat, PCI-27483, antipain, and soybean trypsin inhibitor, inhibited TMPRSS2 in biochemical and cell infection assays. Avoralstat, a clinically tested kallikrein-related B1 inhibitor, inhibited SARS-CoV-2 entry and replication in human airway epithelial cells. In an in vivo proof of principle, avoralstat significantly reduced lung tissue titers and mitigated weight loss when administered prophylactically to mice susceptible to SARS-CoV-2, indicating its potential to be repositioned for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) prophylaxis in humans.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Virus Replication/drug effects , Animals , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , Chlorocebus aethiops , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Male , Mice , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Structure-Activity Relationship , Vero Cells
13.
Int J Biol Macromol ; 184: 297-312, 2021 Aug 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1265684

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 corona virus has become a global pandemic. In the absence of drugs and vaccine, and premises of time, efforts and cost required for their development, natural resources such as herbs are anticipated to provide some help and may also offer a promising resource for drug development. Here, we have investigated the therapeutic prospective of Ashwagandha for the COVID-19 pandemic. Nine withanolides were tested in silico for their potential to target and inhibit (i) cell surface receptor protein (TMPRSS2) that is required for entry of virus to host cells and (ii) viral protein (the main protease Mpro) that is essential for virus replication. We report that the withanolides possess capacity to inhibit the activity of TMPRSS2 and Mpro. Furthermore, withanolide-treated cells showed downregulation of TMPRSS2 expression and inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 replication in vitro, suggesting that Ashwagandha may provide a useful resource for COVID-19 treatment.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Plant Extracts/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Viral Matrix Proteins/metabolism , Withanolides/pharmacology , A549 Cells , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Cell Line , Cell Survival/drug effects , Computer Simulation , Down-Regulation , Gene Expression Regulation/drug effects , Humans , MCF-7 Cells , Models, Molecular , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Withanolides/chemistry
14.
Biomolecules ; 11(6)2021 05 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243950

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a devastating respiratory and inflammatory illness caused by a new coronavirus that is rapidly spreading throughout the human population. Over the past 12 months, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus responsible for COVID-19, has already infected over 160 million (>20% located in United States) and killed more than 3.3 million people around the world (>20% deaths in USA). As we face one of the most challenging times in our recent history, there is an urgent need to identify drug candidates that can attack SARS-CoV-2 on multiple fronts. We have therefore initiated a computational dynamics drug pipeline using molecular modeling, structure simulation, docking and machine learning models to predict the inhibitory activity of several million compounds against two essential SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins and their host protein interactors-S/Ace2, Tmprss2, Cathepsins L and K, and Mpro-to prevent binding, membrane fusion and replication of the virus, respectively. All together, we generated an ensemble of structural conformations that increase high-quality docking outcomes to screen over >6 million compounds including all FDA-approved drugs, drugs under clinical trial (>3000) and an additional >30 million selected chemotypes from fragment libraries. Our results yielded an initial set of 350 high-value compounds from both new and FDA-approved compounds that can now be tested experimentally in appropriate biological model systems. We anticipate that our results will initiate screening campaigns and accelerate the discovery of COVID-19 treatments.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Drug Discovery , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Machine Learning , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Viral Envelope Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication/drug effects
15.
Top Curr Chem (Cham) ; 379(3): 23, 2021 Apr 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1196651

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is still a pandemic around the world. Currently, specific antiviral drugs to control the epidemic remain deficient. Understanding the details of SARS-CoV-2 structural biology is extremely important for development of antiviral agents that will enable regulation of its life cycle. This review focuses on the structural biology and medicinal chemistry of various key proteins (Spike, ACE2, TMPRSS2, RdRp and Mpro) in the life cycle of SARS-CoV-2, as well as their inhibitors/drug candidates. Representative broad-spectrum antiviral drugs, especially those against the homologous virus SARS-CoV, are summarized with the expectation they will drive the development of effective, broad-spectrum inhibitors against coronaviruses. We are hopeful that this review will be a useful aid for discovery of novel, potent anti-SARS-CoV-2 drugs with excellent therapeutic results in the near future.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/antagonists & inhibitors , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Drug Repositioning , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Viral Matrix Proteins/metabolism , Virus Internalization/drug effects
16.
Genes (Basel) ; 12(4)2021 04 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1194619

ABSTRACT

The protease encoded by the TMPRSS2 gene facilitates viral infections and has been implicated in the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2. We analyzed the TMPRSS2 sequence and correlated the protein variants with the clinical features of a cohort of 1177 patients affected by COVID-19 in Italy. Nine relatively common variants (allele frequency > 0.01) and six missense variants which may affect the protease activity according to PolyPhen-2 in HumVar-trained mode were identified. Among them, p.V197M (p.Val197Met) (rs12329760) emerges as a common variant that has a deleterious effect on the protease and a protective effect on the patients. Its role appears particularly relevant in two subgroups of patients-young males and elderly women-and among those affected by co-morbidities, where the variant frequency is higher among individuals who were mildly affected by the disease and did not need hospitalization or oxygen therapy than among those more severely affected, who required oxygen therapy, ventilation or intubation. This study provides useful information for the identification of patients at risk of developing a severe form of COVID-19, and encourages the usage of drugs affecting the expression of TMPRSS2 or inhibiting protein activity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/etiology , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/therapy , Comorbidity , Female , Gene Frequency , Hospitalization , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Mutation , Respiration, Artificial , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Treatment Outcome
17.
J Clin Invest ; 131(10)2021 05 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1180999

ABSTRACT

Drugs targeting host proteins can act prophylactically to reduce viral burden early in disease and limit morbidity, even with antivirals and vaccination. Transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2) is a human protease required for SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viral entry and may represent such a target. We hypothesized that drugs selected from proteins related by their tertiary structure, rather than their primary structure, were likely to interact with TMPRSS2. We created a structure-based phylogenetic computational tool named 3DPhyloFold to systematically identify structurally similar serine proteases with known therapeutic inhibitors and demonstrated effective inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro and in vivo. Several candidate compounds, avoralstat, PCI-27483, antipain, and soybean trypsin inhibitor, inhibited TMPRSS2 in biochemical and cell infection assays. Avoralstat, a clinically tested kallikrein-related B1 inhibitor, inhibited SARS-CoV-2 entry and replication in human airway epithelial cells. In an in vivo proof of principle, avoralstat significantly reduced lung tissue titers and mitigated weight loss when administered prophylactically to mice susceptible to SARS-CoV-2, indicating its potential to be repositioned for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) prophylaxis in humans.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Virus Replication/drug effects , Animals , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , Chlorocebus aethiops , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Male , Mice , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/chemistry , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Structure-Activity Relationship , Vero Cells
18.
Life Sci Alliance ; 4(6)2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1170604

ABSTRACT

Infection of certain influenza viruses is triggered when its HA is cleaved by host cell proteases such as proprotein convertases and type II transmembrane serine proteases (TTSP). HA with a monobasic motif is cleaved by trypsin-like proteases, including TMPRSS2 and HAT, whereas the multibasic motif found in high pathogenicity avian influenza HA is cleaved by furin, PC5/6, or MSPL. MSPL belongs to the TMPRSS family and preferentially cleaves [R/K]-K-K-R↓ sequences. Here, we solved the crystal structure of the extracellular region of human MSPL in complex with an irreversible substrate-analog inhibitor. The structure revealed three domains clustered around the C-terminal α-helix of the SPD. The inhibitor structure and its putative model show that the P1-Arg inserts into the S1 pocket, whereas the P2-Lys and P4-Arg interacts with the Asp/Glu-rich 99-loop that is unique to MSPL. Based on the structure of MSPL, we also constructed a homology model of TMPRSS2, which is essential for the activation of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and infection. The model may provide the structural insight for the drug development for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Influenza in Birds/virology , Membrane Proteins/chemistry , Orthomyxoviridae/pathogenicity , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Animals , Birds , Crystallography, X-Ray , Humans , Protein Conformation
19.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 7307, 2021 03 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1164913

ABSTRACT

Outcomes of various clinical studies for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) treatment indicated that the drug acts via inhibition of multiple pathways (targets) is likely to be more successful and promising. Keeping this hypothesis intact, the present study describes for the first-time, Grazoprevir, an FDA approved anti-viral drug primarily approved for Hepatitis C Virus (HCV), mediated multiple pathway control via synergistic inhibition of viral entry targeting host cell Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE-2)/transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2) and viral replication targeting RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP). Molecular modeling followed by in-depth structural analysis clearly demonstrated that Grazoprevir interacts with the key residues of these targets. Futher, Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations showed stability and burial of key residues after the complex formation. Finally, Molecular Mechanics Poisson-Boltzmann Surface Area (MM-PBSA) analysis identified the governing force of drug-receptor interactions and stability. Thus, we believe that Grazoprevir could be an effective therapeutics for the treatment of the COVID-19 pandemic with a promise of unlikely drug resistance owing to multiple inhibitions of eukaryotic and viral proteins, thus warrants further clinical studies.


Subject(s)
Amides/metabolism , Amides/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Carbamates/metabolism , Carbamates/pharmacology , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/metabolism , Cyclopropanes/metabolism , Cyclopropanes/pharmacology , Quinoxalines/metabolism , Quinoxalines/pharmacology , Sulfonamides/metabolism , Sulfonamides/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/chemistry , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Models, Molecular , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Virus Internalization/drug effects
20.
Infect Genet Evol ; 91: 104815, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1155584

ABSTRACT

The D614G variant of SARS-CoV-2 S-protein emerged in early 2020 and quickly became the dominant circulating strain in Europe and its environs. The variant was characterized by the higher viral load, which is not associated with disease severity, higher incorporation into the virion, and high cell entry via ACE-2 and TMPRSS2. Previous strains of the coronavirus and the current SARS-CoV-2 have demonstrated the selection of mutations as a mechanism of escaping immune responses. In this study, we used molecular dynamics simulation and MM-PBSA binding energy analysis to provide insights into the behaviour of the D614G S-protein at the molecular level and describe the neutralization mechanism of this variant. Our results show that the D614G S-protein adopts distinct conformational dynamics which is skewed towards the open-state conformation more than the closed-state conformation of the wild-type S-protein. Residue-specific variation of amino acid flexibility and domain-specific RMSD suggest that the mutation causes an allosteric conformational change in the RBD. Evaluation of the interaction energies between the S-protein and neutralizing antibodies show that the mutation may enhance, reduce or not affect the neutralizing interactions depending on the neutralizing antibody, especially if it targets the RBD. The results of this study have shed insights into the behaviour of the D614G S-protein at the molecular level and provided a glimpse of the neutralization mechanism of this variant.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Receptors, Virus/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Amino Acid Substitution , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , Binding Sites , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Evolution, Molecular , Gene Expression Regulation , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation , Protein Binding , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Protein Structure, Secondary , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Selection, Genetic , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Thermodynamics
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