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1.
Eur Phys J E Soft Matter ; 44(11): 132, 2021 Oct 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1495656

ABSTRACT

Understanding the physical and chemical properties of viral infections at molecular scales is a major challenge for the scientific community more so with the outbreak of global pandemics. There is currently a lot of effort being placed in identifying molecules that could act as putative drugs or blockers of viral molecules. In this work, we computationally explore the importance in antiviral activity of a less studied class of molecules, namely surfactants. We employ all-atoms molecular dynamics simulations to study the interaction between the receptor-binding domain of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and the phospholipid lecithin (POPC), in water. Our microsecond simulations show a preferential binding of lecithin to the receptor-binding motif of SARS-CoV-2 with binding free energies significantly larger than [Formula: see text]. Furthermore, hydrophobic interactions involving lecithin non-polar tails dominate these binding events, which are also accompanied by dewetting of the receptor binding motif. Through an analysis of fluctuations in the radius of gyration of the receptor-binding domain, its contact maps with lecithin molecules, and distributions of water molecules near the binding region, we elucidate molecular interactions that may play an important role in interactions involving surfactant-type molecules and viruses. We discuss our minimal computational model in the context of lecithin-based liposomal nasal sprays as putative mitigating therapies for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Lecithins/chemistry , Molecular Docking Simulation , Phosphatidylcholines/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Binding Sites , Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions , Nasal Sprays , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
2.
Molecules ; 26(19)2021 Sep 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463764

ABSTRACT

Due to their large possibility of the structure modification, alkylammonium gemini surfactants are a rapidly growing class of compounds. They exhibit significant surface, aggregation and antimicrobial properties. Due to the fact that, in order to achieve the desired utility effect, the minimal concentration of compounds are used, they are in line with the principle of greenolution (green evolution) in chemistry. In this study, we present innovative synthesis of the homologous series of gemini surfactants modified at the spacer by the ether group, i.e., 3-oxa-1,5-pentane-bis(N-alkyl-N,N-dimethylammonium bromides). The critical micelle concentrations were determined. The minimal inhibitory concentrations of the synthesized compounds were determined against bacteria Escherichia coli ATCC 10536 and Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 6538; yeast Candida albicans ATCC 10231; and molds Aspergillus niger ATCC 16401 and Penicillium chrysogenum ATCC 60739. We also investigated the relationship between antimicrobial activity and alkyl chain length or the nature of the spacer. The obtained results indicate that the synthesized compounds are effective microbicides with a broad spectrum of biocidal activity.


Subject(s)
Anti-Infective Agents/pharmacology , Quaternary Ammonium Compounds/pharmacology , Surface-Active Agents/pharmacology , Anti-Infective Agents/chemistry , Aspergillus niger/drug effects , Candida albicans/drug effects , Escherichia coli/drug effects , Green Chemistry Technology , Micelles , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Molecular Structure , Penicillium chrysogenum/drug effects , Quaternary Ammonium Compounds/chemistry , Staphylococcus aureus/drug effects , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry
3.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(16)2021 Aug 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1372662

ABSTRACT

Natural products of microbial origin have inspired most of the commercial pharmaceuticals, especially those from Actinobacteria. However, the redundancy of molecules in the discovery process represents a serious issue. The untargeted approach, One Strain Many Compounds (OSMAC), is one of the most promising strategies to induce the expression of silent genes, especially when combined with genome mining and advanced metabolomics analysis. In this work, the whole genome of the marine isolate Rhodococcus sp. I2R was sequenced and analyzed by antiSMASH for the identification of biosynthetic gene clusters. The strain was cultivated in 22 different growth media and the generated extracts were subjected to metabolomic analysis and functional screening. Notably, only a single growth condition induced the production of unique compounds, which were partially purified and structurally characterized by liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS/MS). This strategy led to identifying a bioactive fraction containing >30 new glycolipids holding unusual functional groups. The active fraction showed a potent antiviral effect against enveloped viruses, such as herpes simplex virus and human coronaviruses, and high antiproliferative activity in PC3 prostate cancer cell line. The identified compounds belong to the biosurfactants class, amphiphilic molecules, which play a crucial role in the biotech and biomedical industry.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Glycolipids/metabolism , Rhodococcus/metabolism , Animals , Antiviral Agents/analysis , Chlorocebus aethiops , Culture Techniques , Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor , Esters/metabolism , Genome, Bacterial , Glycolipids/chemistry , Humans , Metabolome , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Molecular Structure , PC-3 Cells , Rhodococcus/chemistry , Rhodococcus/genetics , Succinates/metabolism , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/metabolism , Vero Cells
4.
Science ; 373(6554): 541-547, 2021 07 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1334531

ABSTRACT

Repurposing drugs as treatments for COVID-19, the disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has drawn much attention. Beginning with sigma receptor ligands and expanding to other drugs from screening in the field, we became concerned that phospholipidosis was a shared mechanism underlying the antiviral activity of many repurposed drugs. For all of the 23 cationic amphiphilic drugs we tested, including hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin, amiodarone, and four others already in clinical trials, phospholipidosis was monotonically correlated with antiviral efficacy. Conversely, drugs active against the same targets that did not induce phospholipidosis were not antiviral. Phospholipidosis depends on the physicochemical properties of drugs and does not reflect specific target-based activities-rather, it may be considered a toxic confound in early drug discovery. Early detection of phospholipidosis could eliminate these artifacts, enabling a focus on molecules with therapeutic potential.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Drug Repositioning , Lipidoses/chemically induced , Phospholipids/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , A549 Cells , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/toxicity , COVID-19/virology , Cations , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dose-Response Relationship, Drug , Female , Humans , Mice , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/pharmacology , Surface-Active Agents/toxicity , Vero Cells , Virus Replication/drug effects
5.
J Am Chem Soc ; 143(31): 12315-12327, 2021 08 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1331364

ABSTRACT

Efficient viral or nonviral delivery of nucleic acids is the key step of genetic nanomedicine. Both viral and synthetic vectors have been successfully employed for genetic delivery with recent examples being DNA, adenoviral, and mRNA-based Covid-19 vaccines. Viral vectors can be target specific and very efficient but can also mediate severe immune response, cell toxicity, and mutations. Four-component lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) containing ionizable lipids, phospholipids, cholesterol for mechanical properties, and PEG-conjugated lipid for stability represent the current leading nonviral vectors for mRNA. However, the segregation of the neutral ionizable lipid as droplets in the core of the LNP, the "PEG dilemma", and the stability at only very low temperatures limit their efficiency. Here, we report the development of a one-component multifunctional ionizable amphiphilic Janus dendrimer (IAJD) delivery system for mRNA that exhibits high activity at a low concentration of ionizable amines organized in a sequence-defined arrangement. Six libraries containing 54 sequence-defined IAJDs were synthesized by an accelerated modular-orthogonal methodology and coassembled with mRNA into dendrimersome nanoparticles (DNPs) by a simple injection method rather than by the complex microfluidic technology often used for LNPs. Forty four (81%) showed activity in vitro and 31 (57%) in vivo. Some, exhibiting organ specificity, are stable at 5 °C and demonstrated higher transfection efficiency than positive control experiments in vitro and in vivo. Aside from practical applications, this proof of concept will help elucidate the mechanisms of packaging and release of mRNA from DNPs as a function of ionizable amine concentration, their sequence, and constitutional isomerism of IAJDs.


Subject(s)
Dendrimers/chemistry , Drug Carriers/chemistry , Nanoparticles/chemistry , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Animals , Dendrimers/chemical synthesis , Drug Carriers/chemical synthesis , Drug Liberation , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Male , Mice , Proof of Concept Study , Surface-Active Agents/chemical synthesis
6.
J Biol Chem ; 297(2): 100940, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1293905

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 envelope protein (S2-E) is a conserved membrane protein that is important for coronavirus (CoV) assembly and budding. Here, we describe the recombinant expression and purification of S2-E in amphipol-class amphipathic polymer solutions, which solubilize and stabilize membrane proteins, but do not disrupt membranes. We found that amphipol delivery of S2-E to preformed planar bilayers results in spontaneous membrane integration and formation of viroporin cation channels. Amphipol delivery of the S2-E protein to human cells results in plasma membrane integration, followed by retrograde trafficking to the trans-Golgi network and accumulation in swollen perinuclear lysosomal-associated membrane protein 1-positive vesicles, likely lysosomes. CoV envelope proteins have previously been proposed to manipulate the luminal pH of the trans-Golgi network, which serves as an accumulation station for progeny CoV particles prior to cellular egress via lysosomes. Delivery of S2-E to cells will enable chemical biological approaches for future studies of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 pathogenesis and possibly even development of "Trojan horse" antiviral therapies. Finally, this work also establishes a paradigm for amphipol-mediated delivery of membrane proteins to cells.


Subject(s)
Cell Membrane/drug effects , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Polymers/pharmacology , Propylamines/pharmacology , Surface-Active Agents/pharmacology , trans-Golgi Network/metabolism , Cell Membrane/metabolism , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/genetics , HeLa Cells , Humans , Lipid Bilayers/chemistry , Lipid Bilayers/metabolism , Lysosomes/metabolism , Polymers/chemistry , Propylamines/chemistry , Protein Transport , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry
7.
Anal Chim Acta ; 1159: 338418, 2021 May 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1172409

ABSTRACT

Favipiravir, a promising antiviral agent, is undergoing clinical trials for the potential treatment of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This is the first report for the electrochemical activity of favipiravir and its electroanalytical sensing. For this purpose, the effect of cationic surfactant, CTAB was demonstrated on the enhanced accumulation of favipiravir at the surface of cathodically pretreated boron-doped diamond (CPT-BDD) electrode. At first, the electrochemical properties of favipiravir were investigated in the surfactant-free solutions by the means of cyclic voltammetry. The compound presented a single oxidation step which is irreversible and adsorption controlled. A systematic study of various operational conditions, such as electrode pretreatment, pH of the supporting electrolyte, concentration of CTAB, accumulation variables, and instrumental parameters on the adsorptive stripping response, was examined using square-wave voltammetry. An oxidation signal at around +1.21 V in Britton-Robinson buffer at pH 8.0 containing 6 × 10-4 M CTAB allowed to the adsorptive stripping voltammetric determination of favipiravir (after 60 s accumulation step at open-circuit condition). The process could be used in the concentration range with two linear segments of 0.01-0.1 µg mL-1 (6.4 × 10-8-6.4 × 10-7 M) and 0.1-20.0 µg mL-1 (6.4 × 10-7-1.3 × 10-4 M). The limit of detection values were found to be 0.0028 µg mL-1 (1.8 × 10-8 M), and 0.023 µg mL-1 (1.5 × 10-7 M) for the first and second segments of calibration graph, respectively. The feasibility of developed methodology was tested to the analysis of the commercial tablet formulations and model human urine samples.


Subject(s)
Amides/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Boron , Diamond , Electrodes , Pyrazines/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects
8.
J Med Chem ; 64(7): 3885-3896, 2021 04 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1155689

ABSTRACT

Quinacrine (QC) and chloroquine (CQ) have antimicrobial and antiviral activities as well as antimalarial activity, although the mechanisms remain unknown. QC increased the antimicrobial activity against yeast exponentially with a pH-dependent increase in the cationic amphiphilic drug (CAD) structure. CAD-QC localized in the yeast membranes and induced glucose starvation by noncompetitively inhibiting glucose uptake as antipsychotic chlorpromazine (CPZ) did. An exponential increase in antimicrobial activity with pH-dependent CAD formation was also observed for CQ, indicating that the CAD structure is crucial for its pharmacological activity. A decrease in CAD structure with a slight decrease in pH from 7.4 greatly reduced their effects; namely, these drugs would inefficiently act on falciparum malaria and COVID-19 pneumonia patients with acidosis, resulting in resistance. The decrease in CAD structure at physiological pH was not observed for quinine, primaquine, or mefloquine. Therefore, restoring the normal blood pH or using pH-insensitive quinoline drugs might be effective for these infectious diseases with acidosis.


Subject(s)
Antifungal Agents/pharmacology , Chloroquine/pharmacology , Quinacrine/pharmacology , Surface-Active Agents/pharmacology , Antifungal Agents/chemistry , Antifungal Agents/metabolism , Cell Membrane/metabolism , Chloroquine/chemistry , Chloroquine/metabolism , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Molecular Structure , Monosaccharide Transport Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Protons , Quinacrine/chemistry , Quinacrine/metabolism , Saccharomyces cerevisiae/drug effects , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/metabolism
9.
Molecules ; 26(5)2021 Mar 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1129755

ABSTRACT

A novel, simple, low-cost, and user-friendly potentiometric surfactant sensor based on the new 1,3-dihexadecyl-1H-benzo[d]imidazol-3-ium-tetraphenylborate (DHBI-TPB) ion-pair for the detection of cationic surfactants in personal care products and disinfectants is presented here. The new cationic surfactant DHBI-Br was successfully synthesized and characterized by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometry, liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) and elemental analysis and was further employed for DHBI-TPB ion-pair preparation. The sensor gave excellent response characteristics for CTAB, CPC and Hyamine with a Nernstian slope (57.1 to 59.1 mV/decade) whereas the lowest limit of detection (LOD) value was measured for CTAB (0.3 × 10-6 M). The sensor exhibited a fast dynamic response to dodecyl sulfate (DDS) and TPB. High sensor performances stayed intact regardless of the employment of inorganic and organic cations and in a broad pH range (2-11). Titration of cationic and etoxylated (EO)-nonionic surfactant (NSs) (in Ba2+) mixtures with TPB revealed the first inflexion point for a cationic surfactant and the second for an EO-nonionic surfactant. The increased concentration of EO-nonionic surfactants and the number of EO groups had a negative influence on titration curves and signal change. The sensor was successfully applied for the quantification of technical-grade cationic surfactants and in 12 personal care products and disinfectants. The results showed good agreement with the measurements obtained by a commercial surfactant sensor and by a two-phase titration. A good recovery for the standard addition method (98-102%) was observed.


Subject(s)
Biosensing Techniques/methods , Cations/chemistry , Cosmetics/analysis , Disinfectants/analysis , Imidazoles/chemistry , Potentiometry/methods , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
10.
Trials ; 21(1): 1014, 2020 Dec 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-966433

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: SARS-Cov-2 virus preferentially binds to the Angiotensin Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) on alveolar epithelial type II cells, initiating an inflammatory response and tissue damage which may impair surfactant synthesis contributing to alveolar collapse, worsening hypoxia and leading to respiratory failure. The objective of this study is to evaluate the feasibility, safety and efficacy of nebulised surfactant in COVID-19 adult patients requiring mechanical ventilation for respiratory failure. TRIAL DESIGN: This study is a dose-escalating randomized open-label clinical trial of 20 COVID-19 patients. PARTICIPANTS: This study is conducted in two centres: University Hospital Southampton and University College London Hospitals. Eligible participants are aged ≥18, hospitalised with COVID-19 (confirmed by PCR), who require endotracheal intubation and are enrolled within 24 hours of mechanical ventilation. For patients unable to consent, assent is obtained from a personal legal representative (PerLR) or professional legal representative (ProfLR) prior to enrolment. The following are exclusion criteria: imminent expected death within 24 hours; specific contraindications to surfactant administration (e.g. known allergy, pneumothorax, pulmonary hemorrhage); known or suspected pregnancy; stage 4 chronic kidney disease or requiring dialysis (i.e., eGFR < 30); liver failure (Child-Pugh Class C); anticipated transfer to another hospital, which is not a study site, within 72 hours; current or recent (within 1 month) participation in another study that, in the opinion of the investigator, would prevent enrollment for safety reasons; and declined consent or assent. INTERVENTION AND COMPARATOR: Intervention: The study is based on an investigational drug/device combination product. The surfactant product is Bovactant (Alveofact®), a natural animal derived (bovine) lung surfactant formulated as a lyophilized powder in 108 mg vials and reconstituted to 45 mg/mL in buffer supplied in a prefilled syringe. It is isolated by lung lavage and, by weight, is a mixture of: phospholipid (75% phosphatidylcholine, 13% phosphatidylglycerol, 3% phosphatidylethanolamine, 1% phosphatidylinositol and 1% sphingomyelin), 5% cholesterol, 1% lipid-soluble surfactant-associated proteins (SP-B and SP-C), very low levels of free fatty acid, lyso-phosphatidylcholine, water and 0.3% calcium. The Drug Delivery Device is the AeroFact-COVID™ nebulizer, an investigational device based on the Aerogen® Solo vibrating mesh nebulizer. The timing and escalation dosing plans for the surfactant are as follows. Cohort 1: Three patients will receive 10 vials (1080 mg) each of surfactant at dosing times of 0 hours, 8 hours and 24 hours. 2 controls with no placebo intervention. Cohort 2: Three patients will receive 10 vials (1080 mg) of surfactant at dosing times of 0 hours and 8 hours, and 30 vials (3240 mg) at a dosing time of 24 hours. 2 controls with no placebo intervention. Cohort 3: Three patients will receive 10 vials (1080 mg) of surfactant at a dosing time of 0 hours, and 30 vials (3240 mg) at dosing times of 8 hours and 24 hours. 2 controls with no placebo intervention. Cohort 4: Three patients will receive 30 (3240 mg) vials each of surfactant at dosing times of 0 hours, 8 hours and 24 hours. 2 controls. 2 controls with no placebo intervention. The trial steering committee, advised by the data monitoring committee, will review trial progression and dose escalation/maintenance/reduction after each cohort is completed (48-hour primary outcome timepoint reached) based on available feasibility, adverse event, safety and efficacy data. The trial will not be discontinued on the basis of lack of efficacy. The trial may be stopped early on the basis of safety or feasibility concerns. Comparator: No placebo intervention. All participants will receive usual standard of care in accordance with the local policies for mechanically ventilated patients and all other treatments will be left to the discretion of the attending physician. MAIN OUTCOMES: The co-primary outcome is the improvement in oxygenation (PaO2/FiO2 ratio) and pulmonary ventilation (Ventilation Index (VI), where VI = [RR x (PIP - PEEP) × PaCO2]/1000) at 48 hours after study initiation. The secondary outcomes include frequency and severity of adverse events (AEs), Adverse Device Effects (ADEs), Serious Adverse Events (SAEs) and Serious Adverse Device Events (SADEs), change in pulmonary compliance, change in positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) requirement of ventilatory support at 24 and 48 hours after study initiation, clinical improvement defined by time to one improvement point on the ordinal scale described in the WHO master protocol (2020) recorded while hospitalised, days of mechanical ventilation, mechanical ventilator free days (VFD) at day 21, length of intensive care unit stay, number of days hospitalised and mortality at day 28. Exploratory end points will include quantification of SARS-CoV-2 viral load from tracheal aspirates using PCR, surfactant dynamics (synthesis and turnover) and function (surface tension reduction) from deep tracheal aspirate samples (DTAS), surfactant phospholipid concentrations in plasma and DTAS, inflammatory markers (cellular and cytokine) in plasma and DTAS, and blood oxidative stress markers. RANDOMISATION: After informed assent, patients fulfilling inclusion criteria will be randomised to 3:2 for the treatment and control arms using an internet-based block randomization service (ALEA tool for clinical trials, FormsVision BV) in combination with electronic data collection. Randomisation will be done by the recruiting centre with a unique subject identifier specific to that centre. BLINDING (MASKING): This is an open-labelled unblinded study. NUMBERS TO BE RANDOMISED (SAMPLE SIZE): The total sample size is 20 COVID-19 mechanically ventilated patients (12 intervention; 8 control). TRIAL STATUS: Current protocol version is V2 dated 5th of June 2020. The recruitment is currently ongoing and started on the 14th of October 2020. The anticipated study completion date is November 2021. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT04362059 (Registered 24 April 2020), EUDAMED number: CIV-GB-20-06-033328, EudraCT number: 2020-001886-35 (Registered 11 May 2020) FULL PROTOCOL: The full protocol is attached as an additional file, accessible from the Trials website (Additional file 1). In the interest in expediting dissemination of this material, the familiar formatting has been eliminated; this Letter serves as a summary of the key elements of the full protocol. The study protocol has been reported in accordance with the Standard Protocol Items: Recommendations for Clinical Interventional Trials (SPIRIT) guidelines (Additional file 2).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Nebulizers and Vaporizers/standards , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Surface-Active Agents/therapeutic use , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Feasibility Studies , Humans , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , London/epidemiology , Mortality/trends , Nebulizers and Vaporizers/statistics & numerical data , Respiration, Artificial/methods , Respiratory Insufficiency/metabolism , Respiratory Insufficiency/physiopathology , Respiratory Insufficiency/therapy , Safety , Surface-Active Agents/administration & dosage , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Treatment Outcome , Ventilation/statistics & numerical data
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