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1.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(20)2022 Oct 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2081861

ABSTRACT

d-Arabinofuranosyl-pyrimidine and -purine nucleoside analogues containing alkylthio-, acetylthio- or 1-thiosugar substituents at the C2' position were prepared from the corresponding 3',5'-O-silylene acetal-protected nucleoside 2'-exomethylenes by photoinitiated, radical-mediated hydrothiolation reactions. Although the stereochemical outcome of the hydrothiolation depended on the structure of both the thiol and the furanoside aglycone, in general, high d-arabino selectivity was obtained. The cytotoxic effect of the arabinonucleosides was studied on tumorous SCC (mouse squamous cell) and immortalized control HaCaT (human keratinocyte) cell lines by MTT assay. Three pyrimidine nucleosides containing C2'-butylsulfanylmethyl or -acetylthiomethyl groups showed promising cytotoxicity at low micromolar concentrations with good selectivity towards tumor cells. SAR analysis using a methyl ß-d-arabinofuranoside reference compound showed that the silyl-protecting group, the nucleobase and the corresponding C2' substituent are crucial for the cell growth inhibitory activity. The effects of the three most active nucleoside analogues on parameters indicative of cytotoxicity, such as cell size, division time and cell generation time, were investigated by near-infrared live cell imaging, which showed that the 2'-acetylthiomethyluridine derivative induced the most significant functional and morphological changes. Some nucleoside analogues also exerted anti-SARS-CoV-2 and/or anti-HCoV-229E activity with low micromolar EC50 values; however, the antiviral activity was always accompanied by significant cytotoxicity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pyrimidine Nucleosides , Thiosugars , Humans , Mice , Animals , Arabinonucleosides/chemistry , Arabinonucleosides/pharmacology , Nucleosides/pharmacology , Nucleosides/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Acetals , Sulfhydryl Compounds/chemistry , Purines , Structure-Activity Relationship
2.
Front Immunol ; 13: 932525, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1933700

ABSTRACT

Posttranslational modifications (PTMs) allow to control molecular and cellular functions in response to specific signals and changes in the microenvironment of cells. They regulate structure, localization, stability, and function of proteins in a spatial and temporal manner. Among them, specific thiol modifications of cysteine (Cys) residues facilitate rapid signal transduction. In fact, Cys is unique because it contains the highly reactive thiol group that can undergo different reversible and irreversible modifications. Upon inflammation and changes in the cellular microenvironment, many extracellular soluble and membrane proteins undergo thiol modifications, particularly dithiol-disulfide exchange, S-glutathionylation, and S-nitrosylation. Among others, these thiol switches are essential for inflammatory signaling, regulation of gene expression, cytokine release, immunoglobulin function and isoform variation, and antigen presentation. Interestingly, also the redox state of bacterial and viral proteins depends on host cell-mediated redox reactions that are critical for invasion and infection. Here, we highlight mechanistic thiol switches in inflammatory pathways and infections including cholera, diphtheria, hepatitis, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), influenza, and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sulfhydryl Compounds , Cysteine , Extracellular Space/metabolism , Humans , Inflammation , Proteins/metabolism , Sulfhydryl Compounds/chemistry , Sulfhydryl Compounds/metabolism
3.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 119(6)2022 02 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650946

ABSTRACT

The development of small-molecules targeting different components of SARS-CoV-2 is a key strategy to complement antibody-based treatments and vaccination campaigns in managing the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we show that two thiol-based chemical probes that act as reducing agents, P2119 and P2165, inhibit infection by human coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2, and decrease the binding of spike glycoprotein to its receptor, the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). Proteomics and reactive cysteine profiling link the antiviral activity to the reduction of key disulfides, specifically by disruption of the Cys379-Cys432 and Cys391-Cys525 pairs distal to the receptor binding motif in the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the spike glycoprotein. Computational analyses provide insight into conformation changes that occur when these disulfides break or form, consistent with an allosteric role, and indicate that P2119/P2165 target a conserved hydrophobic binding pocket in the RBD with the benzyl thiol-reducing moiety pointed directly toward Cys432. These collective findings establish the vulnerability of human coronaviruses to thiol-based chemical probes and lay the groundwork for developing compounds of this class, as a strategy to inhibit the SARS-CoV-2 infection by shifting the spike glycoprotein redox scaffold.


Subject(s)
Amino Alcohols/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Phenyl Ethers/pharmacology , Receptors, Virus/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Sulfhydryl Compounds/pharmacology , Allosteric Regulation , Amino Alcohols/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/antagonists & inhibitors , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Disulfides/antagonists & inhibitors , Disulfides/chemistry , Disulfides/metabolism , Dose-Response Relationship, Drug , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Nasal Mucosa/drug effects , Nasal Mucosa/metabolism , Nasal Mucosa/virology , Oxidation-Reduction , Phenyl Ethers/chemistry , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Receptors, Virus/antagonists & inhibitors , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/antagonists & inhibitors , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Sulfhydryl Compounds/chemistry
4.
Arch Toxicol ; 95(4): 1179-1226, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1384375

ABSTRACT

Here, we addressed the pharmacology and toxicology of synthetic organoselenium compounds and some naturally occurring organoselenium amino acids. The use of selenium as a tool in organic synthesis and as a pharmacological agent goes back to the middle of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries. The rediscovery of ebselen and its investigation in clinical trials have motivated the search for new organoselenium molecules with pharmacological properties. Although ebselen and diselenides have some overlapping pharmacological properties, their molecular targets are not identical. However, they have similar anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities, possibly, via activation of transcription factors, regulating the expression of antioxidant genes. In short, our knowledge about the pharmacological properties of simple organoselenium compounds is still elusive. However, contrary to our early expectations that they could imitate selenoproteins, organoselenium compounds seem to have non-specific modulatory activation of antioxidant pathways and specific inhibitory effects in some thiol-containing proteins. The thiol-oxidizing properties of organoselenium compounds are considered the molecular basis of their chronic toxicity; however, the acute use of organoselenium compounds as inhibitors of specific thiol-containing enzymes can be of therapeutic significance. In summary, the outcomes of the clinical trials of ebselen as a mimetic of lithium or as an inhibitor of SARS-CoV-2 proteases will be important to the field of organoselenium synthesis. The development of computational techniques that could predict rational modifications in the structure of organoselenium compounds to increase their specificity is required to construct a library of thiol-modifying agents with selectivity toward specific target proteins.


Subject(s)
Organoselenium Compounds/pharmacology , Organoselenium Compounds/toxicity , Amino Acids/chemistry , Animals , Azoles , Humans , Isoindoles , Molecular Structure , Selenium/chemistry , Selenium/physiology , Selenoproteins/chemistry , Sulfhydryl Compounds/chemistry
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