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1.
Life Sci Alliance ; 5(10)2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1876430

ABSTRACT

By the end of December 2021, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) produced more than 271 million cases and 5.3 million deaths. Although vaccination is an effective strategy for pandemic control, it is not yet equally available in all countries. Therefore, identification of prognostic biomarkers remains crucial to manage COVID-19 patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate predictors of COVID-19 severity previously proposed. Clinical and demographic characteristics and 120 single-nucleotide polymorphisms were analyzed from 817 patients with COVID-19, who attended the emergency department of the Hospital Universitario de La Princesa during March and April 2020. The main outcome was a modified version of the 7-point World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 severity scale (WHOCS); both in the moment of the first hospital examination (WHOCS-1) and of the severest WHOCS score (WHOCS-2). The TMPRSS2 rs75603675 genotype (OR = 0.586), dyslipidemia (OR = 2.289), sex (OR = 0.586), and the Charlson Comorbidity Index (OR = 1.126) were identified as the main predictors of disease severity. Consequently, these variables might influence COVID-19 severity and could be used as predictors of disease development.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/diagnosis , Comorbidity , Female , Humans , Male , Serine , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Severity of Illness Index , Sex Factors
2.
World J Gastroenterol ; 27(39): 6590-6600, 2021 Oct 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488813

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) seems to employ two routes of entrance to the host cell; via membrane fusion (with the cells expressing both angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and transmembrane peptidase/serine subfamily member 2/4 (TMPRSS2/4)) or via receptor-mediated endocytosis (to the target cells expressing only ACE2). The second mode is associated with cysteine cathepsins (probably cathepsin L) involvement in the virus spike protein (S protein) proteolytic activation. Also furin might activate the virus S protein enabling it to enter cells. Gastrointestinal tract (GIT) involvement in SARS-CoV-2 infection is evident in a subset of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients exhibiting GIT symptoms, such as diarrhea, and presenting viral-shedding in feces. Considering the abundance and co-localization of ACE2 and TMPRSS2 in the lower GIT (especially brush-border enterocytes), these two receptors seem to be mainly involved in SARS-CoV-2 invasion of the digestive tract. Additionally, in vitro studies have demonstrated the virions capability of infection and replication in the human epithelial cells lining GIT. However, also furin and cysteine cathepsins (cathepsin L) might participate in the activation of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein contributing to the virus invasiveness within GIT. Moreover, cathepsin L (due to its involvement in extracellular matrix components degradation and remodeling, the processes enhanced during SARS-CoV-2-induced inflammation) might be responsible for the dysregulation of absorption/ digestion functions of GIT, thus adding to the observed in some COVID-19 patients symptoms such as diarrhea.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Peptide Hydrolases , Cathepsin L , Gastrointestinal Tract , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Virus Internalization
3.
Mol Divers ; 26(1): 265-278, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1160696

ABSTRACT

Transmembrane protease serine-2 (TMPRSS2) is a cell-surface protein expressed by epithelial cells of specific tissues including those in the aerodigestive tract. It helps the entry of novel coronavirus (n-CoV) or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in the host cell. Successful inhibition of the TMPRSS2 can be one of the crucial strategies to stop the SARS-CoV-2 infection. In the present study, a set of bioactive molecules from Morus alba Linn. were screened against the TMPRSS2 through two widely used molecular docking engines such as Autodock vina and Glide. Molecules having a higher binding affinity toward the TMPRSS2 compared to Camostat and Ambroxol were considered for in-silico pharmacokinetic analyses. Based on acceptable pharmacokinetic parameters and drug-likeness, finally, five molecules were found to be important for the TMPRSS2 inhibition. A number of bonding interactions in terms of hydrogen bond and hydrophobic interactions were observed between the proposed molecules and ligand-interacting amino acids of the TMPRSS2. The dynamic behavior and stability of best-docked complex between TRMPRSS2 and proposed molecules were assessed through molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. Several parameters from MD simulation have suggested the stability between the protein and ligands. Binding free energy of each molecule calculated through MM-GBSA approach from the MD simulation trajectory suggested strong affection toward the TMPRSS2. Hence, proposed molecules might be crucial chemical components for the TMPRSS2 inhibition.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Morus , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protease Inhibitors/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine , Virus Internalization
4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1676, 2021 03 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1135664

ABSTRACT

The recently identified Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the cause of the COVID-19 pandemic. How this novel beta-coronavirus virus, and coronaviruses more generally, alter cellular metabolism to support massive production of ~30 kB viral genomes and subgenomic viral RNAs remains largely unknown. To gain insights, transcriptional and metabolomic analyses are performed 8 hours after SARS-CoV-2 infection, an early timepoint where the viral lifecycle is completed but prior to overt effects on host cell growth or survival. Here, we show that SARS-CoV-2 remodels host folate and one-carbon metabolism at the post-transcriptional level to support de novo purine synthesis, bypassing viral shutoff of host translation. Intracellular glucose and folate are depleted in SARS-CoV-2-infected cells, and viral replication is exquisitely sensitive to inhibitors of folate and one-carbon metabolism, notably methotrexate. Host metabolism targeted therapy could add to the armamentarium against future coronavirus outbreaks.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Carbon/metabolism , Folic Acid/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Virus Replication , A549 Cells , Animals , COVID-19/virology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cytopathogenic Effect, Viral , Folic Acid Antagonists/pharmacology , Glucose/metabolism , Humans , Methotrexate/pharmacology , RNA, Viral/biosynthesis , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Serine/metabolism , Transcription, Genetic , Vero Cells , Viral Proteins/genetics , Virus Replication/drug effects
5.
Med Hypotheses ; 149: 110543, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1087147

ABSTRACT

The socio-economic implications of COVID-19 are devastating. Considerable morbidity is attributed to 'long-COVID' - an increasingly recognized complication of infection. Its diverse symptoms are reminiscent of vitamin B12 deficiency, a condition in which methylation status is compromised. We suggest why SARS-CoV-2 infection likely leads to increased methyl-group requirements and other disturbances of one-carbon metabolism. We propose these might explain the varied symptoms of long-COVID. Our suggested mechanismmight also apply to similar conditions such as myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome. The hypothesis is evaluable by detailed determination of vitamin B12and folate status, including serum formate as well as homocysteine and methylmalonic acid, and correlation with viral and host RNA methylation and symptomatology. If confirmed, methyl-group support should prove beneficial in such individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Folic Acid/blood , Vitamin B 12 Deficiency/diagnosis , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine/chemistry , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/physiopathology , Folic Acid Deficiency , Formates/blood , Genome, Viral , Glutathione/blood , Homocysteine/blood , Hospitalization , Humans , Methylation , Methylmalonic Acid/blood , Oxidative Stress , RNA/chemistry , Serine/blood , Vitamin B 12/blood
7.
J Transl Med ; 18(1): 329, 2020 08 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-736398

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The new Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), which was first detected in Wuhan (China) in December of 2019 is responsible for the current global pandemic. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that it is similar to other betacoronaviruses, such as SARS-CoV and Middle-Eastern Respiratory Syndrome, MERS-CoV. Its genome is ∼ 30 kb in length and contains two large overlapping polyproteins, ORF1a and ORF1ab that encode for several structural and non-structural proteins. The non-structural protein 1 (nsp1) is arguably the most important pathogenic determinant, and previous studies on SARS-CoV indicate that it is both involved in viral replication and hampering the innate immune system response. Detailed experiments of site-specific mutagenesis and in vitro reconstitution studies determined that the mechanisms of action are mediated by (a) the presence of specific amino acid residues of nsp1 and (b) the interaction between the protein and the host's small ribosomal unit. In fact, substitution of certain amino acids resulted in reduction of its negative effects. METHODS: A total of 17,928 genome sequences were obtained from the GISAID database (December 2019 to July 2020) from patients infected by SARS-CoV-2 from different areas around the world. Genomes alignment was performed using MAFFT (REFF) and the nsp1 genomic regions were identified using BioEdit and verified using BLAST. Nsp1 protein of SARS-CoV-2 with and without deletion have been subsequently modelled using I-TASSER. RESULTS: We identified SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences, from several Countries, carrying a previously unknown deletion of 9 nucleotides in position 686-694, corresponding to the AA position 241-243 (KSF). This deletion was found in different geographical areas. Structural prediction modelling suggests an effect on the C-terminal tail structure. CONCLUSIONS: Modelling analysis of a newly identified deletion of 3 amino acids (KSF) of SARS-CoV-2 nsp1 suggests that this deletion could affect the structure of the C-terminal region of the protein, important for regulation of viral replication and negative effect on host's gene expression. In addition, substitution of the two amino acids (KS) from nsp1 of SARS-CoV was previously reported to revert loss of interferon-alpha expression. The deletion that we describe indicates that SARS-CoV-2 is undergoing profound genomic changes. It is important to: (i) confirm the spreading of this particular viral strain, and potentially of strains with other deletions in the nsp1 protein, both in the population of asymptomatic and pauci-symptomatic subjects, and (ii) correlate these changes in nsp1 with potential decreased viral pathogenicity.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Sequence Deletion , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Amino Acid Sequence , Base Sequence , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases, Emerging/virology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Gene Frequency , Genome, Viral , Geography , Humans , Lysine/genetics , Models, Molecular , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Phenylalanine/genetics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Protein Domains/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Virulence/genetics , Virus Replication/genetics
8.
J Biomol Struct Dyn ; 40(1): 1-13, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-436584

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) initiated in December 2019 in Wuhan, China and became pandemic causing high fatality and disrupted normal life calling world almost to a halt. Causative agent is a novel coronavirus called Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2/2019-nCoV). While new line of drug/vaccine development has been initiated world-wide, in the current scenario of high infected numbers, severity of the disease and high morbidity, repurposing of the existing drugs is heavily explored. Here, we used a homology-based structural model of transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2), a cell surface receptor, required for entry of virus to the target host cell. Using the strengths of molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations, we examined the binding potential of Withaferin-A (Wi-A), Withanone (Wi-N) and caffeic acid phenethyl ester to TPMRSS2 in comparison to its known inhibitor, Camostat mesylate. We found that both Wi-A and Wi-N could bind and stably interact at the catalytic site of TMPRSS2. Wi-N showed stronger interactions with TMPRSS2 catalytic residues than Wi-A and was also able to induce changes in its allosteric site. Furthermore, we investigated the effect of Wi-N on TMPRSS2 expression in MCF7 cells and found remarkable downregulation of TMPRSS2 mRNA in treated cells predicting dual action of Wi-N to block SARS-CoV-2 entry into the host cells. Since the natural compounds are easily available/affordable, they may even offer a timely therapeutic/preventive value for the management of SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. We also report that Wi-A/Wi-N content varies in different parts of Ashwagandha and warrants careful attention for their use.Communicated by Ramaswamy H. Sarma.


Subject(s)
SARS-CoV-2 , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Withanolides/pharmacology , Binding Sites , COVID-19 , Humans , MCF-7 Cells , Molecular Docking Simulation , Plant Extracts/chemistry , Serine , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics
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