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1.
Cell Mol Life Sci ; 80(6): 153, 2023 May 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2328394

ABSTRACT

Accumulating evidence has consolidated the interaction between viral infection and host alternative splicing. Serine-arginine (SR) proteins are a class of highly conserved splicing factors critical for the spliceosome maturation, alternative splicing and RNA metabolism. Serine-arginine protein kinases (SRPKs) are important kinases that specifically phosphorylate SR proteins to regulate their distribution and activities in the central pre-mRNA splicing and other cellular processes. In addition to the predominant SR proteins, other cytoplasmic proteins containing a serine-arginine repeat domain, including viral proteins, have been identified as substrates of SRPKs. Viral infection triggers a myriad of cellular events in the host and it is therefore not surprising that viruses explore SRPKs-mediated phosphorylation as an important regulatory node in virus-host interactions. In this review, we briefly summarize the regulation and biological function of SRPKs, highlighting their involvement in the infection process of several viruses, such as viral replication, transcription and capsid assembly. In addition, we review the structure-function relationships of currently available inhibitors of SRPKs and discuss their putative use as antivirals against well-characterized viruses or newly emerging viruses. We also highlight the viral proteins and cellular substrates targeted by SRPKs as potential antiviral therapeutic candidates.


Subject(s)
Protein Kinases , Virus Diseases , Humans , Protein Kinases/metabolism , Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases/metabolism , Arginine/metabolism , Serine/metabolism , Phosphorylation , RNA Splicing , Alternative Splicing , Viral Proteins/genetics , Virus Diseases/drug therapy , Serine-Arginine Splicing Factors/metabolism
2.
Front Cell Infect Microbiol ; 13: 1166839, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2323707

ABSTRACT

Coronaviruses (CoVs) are enveloped and positive-stranded RNA viruses with a large genome (∼ 30kb). CoVs include essential genes, such as the replicase and four genes coding for structural proteins (S, M, N and E), and genes encoding accessory proteins, which are variable in number, sequence and function among different CoVs. Accessory proteins are non-essential for virus replication, but are frequently involved in virus-host interactions associated with virulence. The scientific literature on CoV accessory proteins includes information analyzing the effect of deleting or mutating accessory genes in the context of viral infection, which requires the engineering of CoV genomes using reverse genetics systems. However, a considerable number of publications analyze gene function by overexpressing the protein in the absence of other viral proteins. This ectopic expression provides relevant information, although does not acknowledge the complex interplay of proteins during virus infection. A critical review of the literature may be helpful to interpret apparent discrepancies in the conclusions obtained by different experimental approaches. This review summarizes the current knowledge on human CoV accessory proteins, with an emphasis on their contribution to virus-host interactions and pathogenesis. This knowledge may help the search for antiviral drugs and vaccine development, still needed for some highly pathogenic human CoVs.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus , Humans , Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Antiviral Agents , Virulence
3.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 8(1): 172, 2023 04 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2303068

ABSTRACT

Monkeypox has been declared a public health emergency by the World Health Organization. There is an urgent need for efficient and safe vaccines against the monkeypox virus (MPXV) in response to the rapidly spreading monkeypox epidemic. In the age of COVID-19, mRNA vaccines have been highly successful and emerged as platforms enabling rapid development and large-scale preparation. Here, we develop two MPXV quadrivalent mRNA vaccines, named mRNA-A-LNP and mRNA-B-LNP, based on two intracellular mature virus specific proteins (A29L and M1R) and two extracellular enveloped virus specific proteins (A35R and B6R). By administering mRNA-A-LNP and mRNA-B-LNP intramuscularly twice, mice induce MPXV specific IgG antibodies and potent vaccinia virus (VACV) specific neutralizing antibodies. Further, it elicits efficient MPXV specific Th-1 biased cellular immunity, as well as durable effector memory T and germinal center B cell responses in mice. In addition, two doses of mRNA-A-LNP and mRNA-B-LNP are protective against the VACV challenge in mice. And, the passive transfer of sera from mRNA-A-LNP and mRNA-B-LNP-immunized mice protects nude mice against the VACV challenge. Overall, our results demonstrate that mRNA-A-LNP and mRNA-B-LNP appear to be safe and effective vaccine candidates against monkeypox epidemics, as well as against outbreaks caused by other orthopoxviruses, including the smallpox virus.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Monkeypox , Animals , Mice , Vaccinia virus/genetics , Monkeypox virus , Monkeypox/prevention & control , Vaccines, Combined , Mice, Nude , Viral Proteins/genetics , Immunity
4.
Viruses ; 15(3)2023 02 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2272449

ABSTRACT

Single-stranded RNA viruses (ssRNAv) are characterized by their biological diversity and great adaptability to different hosts; traits which make them a major threat to human health due to their potential to cause zoonotic outbreaks. A detailed understanding of the mechanisms involved in viral proliferation is essential to address the challenges posed by these pathogens. Key to these processes are ribonucleoproteins (RNPs), the genome-containing RNA-protein complexes whose function is to carry out viral transcription and replication. Structural determination of RNPs can provide crucial information on the molecular mechanisms of these processes, paving the way for the development of new, more effective strategies to control and prevent the spread of ssRNAv diseases. In this scenario, cryogenic electron microscopy (cryoEM), relying on the technical and methodological revolution it has undergone in recent years, can provide invaluable help in elucidating how these macromolecular complexes are organized, packaged within the virion, or the functional implications of these structures. In this review, we summarize some of the most prominent achievements by cryoEM in the study of RNP and nucleocapsid structures in lipid-enveloped ssRNAv.


Subject(s)
Influenza A virus , RNA, Viral , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Ribonucleoproteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Nucleocapsid/metabolism , Influenza A virus/genetics
5.
Front Cell Infect Microbiol ; 12: 966870, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2276215

ABSTRACT

The recent pandemic caused by Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 has resulted in enormous deaths around the world. Clues from genomic sequences of parent and their mutants can be obtained to understand the evolving pathogenesis of this virus. Apart from the viral proteins, virus-encoded microRNAs (miRNAs) have been shown to play a vital role in regulating viral pathogenesis. Thus we sought to investigate the miRNAs encoded by SARS-CoV-2, its mutants, and the host. Here, we present the results obtained using a dual approach i.e (i) identifying host-encoded miRNAs that might regulate viral pathogenesis and (ii) identifying viral-encoded miRNAs that might regulate host cell signaling pathways and aid in viral pathogenesis. Analysis utilizing the first approach resulted in the identification of ten host-encoded miRNAs that could target the SARS, SARS-CoV-2, and its mutants. Interestingly our analysis revealed that there is a significantly higher number of host miRNAs that could target the SARS-CoV-2 genome as compared to the SARS reference genome. Results from the second approach resulted in the identification of a set of virus-encoded miRNAs which might regulate host signaling pathways. Our analysis further identified a similar "GA" rich motif in the SARS-CoV-2 and its mutant genomes that was shown to play a vital role in lung pathogenesis during severe SARS infections. In summary, we have identified human and virus-encoded miRNAs that might regulate the pathogenesis of SARS coronaviruses and describe similar non-coding RNA sequences in SARS-CoV-2 that were shown to regulate SARS-induced lung pathology in mice.


Subject(s)
Genome, Viral , MicroRNAs , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Humans , Mice , COVID-19 , MicroRNAs/genetics , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics
6.
Viruses ; 15(3)2023 03 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2281503

ABSTRACT

The spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), causing the COVID-19 outbreak, posed a primary concern of public health worldwide. The most common changes in SARS-CoV-2 are single nucleotide substitutions, also reported insertions and deletions. This work investigates the presence of SARS-CoV-2 ORF7a deletions identified in COVID-19-positive individuals. Sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 complete genomes showed three different ORF7a size deletions (190-nt, 339-nt and 365-nt). Deletions were confirmed through Sanger sequencing. The ORF7a∆190 was detected in a group of five relatives with mild symptoms of COVID-19, and the ORF7a∆339 and ORF7a∆365 in a couple of co-workers. These deletions did not affect subgenomic RNAs (sgRNA) production downstream of ORF7a. Still, fragments associated with sgRNA of genes upstream of ORF7a showed a decrease in size when corresponding to samples with deletions. In silico analysis suggests that the deletions impair protein proper function; however, isolated viruses with partial deletion of ORF7a can replicate in culture cells similarly to wild-type viruses at 24 hpi, but with less infectious particles after 48 hpi. These findings on deleted ORF7a accessory protein gene, contribute to understanding SARS-CoV-2 phenotypes such as replication, immune evasion and evolutionary fitness as well insights into the role of SARS-CoV-2_ORF7a in the mechanism of virus-host interactions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Viral Proteins , Humans , Cell Culture Techniques , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sequence Analysis , Sequence Deletion , Viral Proteins/genetics , Subgenomic RNA/genetics
7.
Sci Rep ; 13(1): 4154, 2023 03 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2249038

ABSTRACT

The rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an unprecedented amount of sequence data of the SARS-CoV-2 genome-millions of sequences and counting. This amount of data, while being orders of magnitude beyond the capacity of traditional approaches to understanding the diversity, dynamics, and evolution of viruses, is nonetheless a rich resource for machine learning (ML) approaches as alternatives for extracting such important information from these data. It is of hence utmost importance to design a framework for testing and benchmarking the robustness of these ML models. This paper makes the first effort (to our knowledge) to benchmark the robustness of ML models by simulating biological sequences with errors. In this paper, we introduce several ways to perturb SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences to mimic the error profiles of common sequencing platforms such as Illumina and PacBio. We show from experiments on a wide array of ML models that some simulation-based approaches with different perturbation budgets are more robust (and accurate) than others for specific embedding methods to certain noise simulations on the input sequences. Our benchmarking framework may assist researchers in properly assessing different ML models and help them understand the behavior of the SARS-CoV-2 virus or avoid possible future pandemics.


Subject(s)
Computer Simulation , Genome, Viral , Machine Learning , Research Design , SARS-CoV-2 , Machine Learning/standards , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Genome, Viral/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Sequence Analysis, RNA
8.
Virology ; 581: 97-115, 2023 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2265395

ABSTRACT

The majority of SARS-CoV-2 therapeutic development work has focussed on targeting the spike protein, viral polymerase and proteases. As the pandemic progressed, many studies reported that these proteins are prone to high levels of mutation and can become drug resistant. Thus, it is necessary to not only target other viral proteins such as the non-structural proteins (NSPs) but to also target the most conserved residues of these proteins. In order to understand the level of conservation among these viruses, in this review, we have focussed on the conservation across RNA viruses, conservation across the coronaviruses and then narrowed our focus to conservation of NSPs across coronaviruses. We have also discussed the various treatment options for SARS-CoV-2 infection. A synergistic melding of bioinformatics, computer-aided drug-design and in vitro/vivo studies can feed into better understanding of the virus and therefore help in the development of small molecule inhibitors against the viral proteins.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , COVID-19/epidemiology , Drug Design , Viral Proteins/genetics , Disease Outbreaks , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
9.
mBio ; 14(2): e0012723, 2023 04 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2274752

ABSTRACT

Viruses are known to co-opt host machinery for translation initiation, but less is known about which host factors are required for the formation of ribosomes used to synthesize viral proteins. Using a loss-of-function CRISPR screen, we show that synthesis of a flavivirus-encoded fluorescent reporter depends on multiple host factors, including several 60S ribosome biogenesis proteins. Viral phenotyping revealed that two of these factors, SBDS, a known ribosome biogenesis factor, and the relatively uncharacterized protein SPATA5, were broadly required for replication of flaviviruses, coronaviruses, alphaviruses, paramyxoviruses, an enterovirus, and a poxvirus. Mechanistic studies revealed that loss of SPATA5 caused defects in rRNA processing and ribosome assembly, suggesting that this human protein may be a functional ortholog of yeast Drg1. These studies implicate specific ribosome biogenesis proteins as viral host dependency factors that are required for synthesis of virally encoded protein and accordingly, optimal viral replication. IMPORTANCE Viruses are well known for their ability to co-opt host ribosomes to synthesize viral proteins. The specific factors involved in translation of viral RNAs are not fully described. In this study, we implemented a unique genome-scale CRISPR screen to identify previously uncharacterized host factors that are important for the synthesis of virally encoded protein. We found that multiple genes involved in 60S ribosome biogenesis were required for viral RNA translation. Loss of these factors severely impaired viral replication. Mechanistic studies on the AAA ATPase SPATA5 indicate that this host factor is required for a late step in ribosome formation. These findings reveal insight into the identity and function of specific ribosome biogenesis proteins that are critical for viral infections.


Subject(s)
Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats , Flavivirus , Humans , Ribosomes/metabolism , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , ATPases Associated with Diverse Cellular Activities/metabolism
10.
Microbiol Spectr ; 11(1): e0194322, 2023 02 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2242938

ABSTRACT

We utilized a high-throughput cell-based assay to screen several chemical libraries for inhibitors of herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) gene expression. From this screen, four aurora kinase inhibitors were identified that potently reduced gene expression during HSV-1 lytic infection. HSV-1 is known to interact with cellular kinases to regulate gene expression by modulating the phosphorylation and/or activities of viral and cellular proteins. To date, the role of aurora kinases in HSV-1 lytic infection has not been reported. We demonstrated that three aurora kinase inhibitors strongly reduced the transcript levels of immediate-early (IE) genes ICP0, ICP4, and ICP27 and impaired HSV-1 protein expression from all classes of HSV-1, including ICP0, ICP4, ICP8, and gC. These restrictions caused by the aurora kinase inhibitors led to potent reductions in HSV-1 viral replication. The compounds TAK 901, JNJ 7706621, and PF 03814735 decreased HSV-1 titers by 4,500-, 13,200-, and 8,400-fold, respectively, when present in a low micromolar range. The antiviral activity of these compounds correlated with an apparent decrease in histone H3 phosphorylation at serine 10 (H3S10ph) during viral infection, suggesting that the phosphorylation status of H3 influences HSV-1 gene expression. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the aurora kinase inhibitors also impaired the replication of other RNA and DNA viruses. These inhibitors significantly reduced yields of vaccinia virus (a poxvirus, double-stranded DNA, cytoplasmic replication) and mouse hepatitis virus (a coronavirus, positive-sense single-strand RNA [ssRNA]), whereas vesicular stomatitis virus (rhabdovirus, negative-sense ssRNA) yields were unaffected. These results indicated that the activities of aurora kinases play pivotal roles in the life cycles of diverse viruses. IMPORTANCE We have demonstrated that aurora kinases play a role during HSV-1 lytic infection. Three aurora kinase inhibitors significantly impaired HSV-1 immediate-early gene expression. This led to a potent reduction in HSV-1 protein expression and viral replication. Together, our results illustrate a novel role for aurora kinases in the HSV-1 lytic cycle and demonstrate that aurora kinase inhibitors can restrict HSV-1 replication. Furthermore, these aurora kinase inhibitors also reduced the replication of murine coronavirus and vaccinia virus, suggesting that multiple viral families utilize the aurora kinases for their own replication.


Subject(s)
Herpes Simplex , Herpesvirus 1, Human , Immediate-Early Proteins , RNA Viruses , Animals , Mice , Herpesvirus 1, Human/genetics , Immediate-Early Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Cell Line , Herpes Simplex/genetics , DNA/metabolism , RNA/metabolism , Life Cycle Stages
11.
Mol Biol Evol ; 40(2)2023 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2189385

ABSTRACT

Some viruses (e.g., human immunodeficiency virus 1 and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) have been experimentally proposed to accelerate features of human aging and of cellular senescence. These observations, along with evolutionary considerations on viral fitness, raised the more general puzzling hypothesis that, beyond documented sources in human genetics, aging in our species may also depend on virally encoded interactions distorting our aging to the benefits of diverse viruses. Accordingly, we designed systematic network-based analyses of the human and viral protein interactomes, which unraveled dozens of viruses encoding proteins experimentally demonstrated to interact with proteins from pathways associated with human aging, including cellular senescence. We further corroborated our predictions that specific viruses interfere with human aging using published experimental evidence and transcriptomic data; identifying influenza A virus (subtype H1N1) as a major candidate age distorter, notably through manipulation of cellular senescence. By providing original evidence that viruses may convergently contribute to the evolution of numerous age-associated pathways through co-evolution, our network-based and bipartite network-based methodologies support an ecosystemic study of aging, also searching for genetic causes of aging outside a focal aging species. Our findings, predicting age distorters and targets for anti-aging therapies among human viruses, could have fundamental and practical implications for evolutionary biology, aging study, virology, medicine, and demography.


Subject(s)
Aging , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype , Influenza A virus , Humans , Aging/genetics , Influenza A virus/genetics , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Biological Coevolution , Cellular Senescence
12.
Microbiol Spectr ; 11(1): e0370722, 2023 02 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2193578

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 virion is composed of four structural proteins: spike (S), nucleocapsid (N), membrane (M), and envelope (E). E spans the membrane a single time and is the smallest, yet most enigmatic of the structural proteins. E is conserved among coronaviruses and has an essential role in virus-mediated pathogenesis. We found that ectopic expression of E had deleterious effects on the host cell as it activated stress responses, leading to LC3 lipidation and phosphorylation of the translation initiation factor eIF2α that resulted in host translational shutoff. During infection E is highly expressed, although only a small fraction is incorporated into virions, suggesting that E activity is regulated and harnessed by the virus to its benefit. Consistently, we found that proteins from heterologous viruses, such as the γ1 34.5 protein of herpes simplex virus 1, prevented deleterious effects of E on the host cell and allowed for E protein accumulation. This observation prompted us to investigate whether other SARS-CoV-2 structural proteins regulate E. We found that the N and M proteins enabled E protein accumulation, whereas S did not. While γ1 34.5 protein prevented deleterious effects of E on the host cells, it had a negative effect on SARS-CoV-2 replication. The negative effect of γ1 34.5 was most likely associated with failure of SARS-CoV-2 to divert the translational machinery and with deregulation of autophagy. Overall, our data suggest that SARS-CoV-2 causes stress responses and subjugates these pathways, including host protein synthesis (phosphorylated eIF2α) and autophagy, to support optimal virus replication. IMPORTANCE In late 2019, a new ß-coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, entered the human population causing a pandemic that has resulted in over 6 million deaths worldwide. Although closely related to SARS-CoV, the mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis are not fully understood. We found that ectopic expression of the SARS-CoV-2 E protein had detrimental effects on the host cell, causing metabolic alterations, including shutoff of protein synthesis and mobilization of cellular resources through autophagy activation. Coexpression of E with viral proteins known to subvert host antiviral responses such as autophagy and translational inhibition, either from SARS-CoV-2 or from heterologous viruses, increased cell survival and E protein accumulation. However, such factors were found to negatively impact SARS-CoV-2 infection, as autophagy contributes to formation of viral membrane factories and translational control offers an advantage for viral gene expression. Overall, SARS-CoV-2 has evolved mechanisms to harness host functions that are essential for virus replication.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Autophagy , Protein Processing, Post-Translational , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Proteins/genetics
13.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 19977, 2022 Nov 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2133615

ABSTRACT

Metabolomic analysis of blood plasma samples from COVID-19 patients is a promising approach allowing for the evaluation of disease progression. We performed the metabolomic analysis of plasma samples of 30 COVID-19 patients and the 19 controls using the high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with tandem mass spectrometric detection (LC-MS/MS). In our analysis, we identified 103 metabolites enriched in KEGG metabolic pathways such as amino acid metabolism and the biosynthesis of aminoacyl-tRNAs, which differed significantly between the COVID-19 patients and the controls. Using ANDSystem software, we performed the reconstruction of gene networks describing the potential genetic regulation of metabolic pathways perturbed in COVID-19 patients by SARS-CoV-2 proteins. The nonstructural proteins of SARS-CoV-2 (orf8 and nsp5) and structural protein E were involved in the greater number of regulatory pathways. The reconstructed gene networks suggest the hypotheses on the molecular mechanisms of virus-host interactions in COVID-19 pathology and provide a basis for the further experimental and computer studies of the regulation of metabolic pathways by SARS-CoV-2 proteins. Our metabolomic analysis suggests the need for nonstructural protein-based vaccines and the control strategy to reduce the disease progression of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Gene Regulatory Networks , Chromatography, Liquid , Tandem Mass Spectrometry , Plasma , Viral Proteins/genetics , Disease Progression
14.
Viruses ; 14(12)2022 12 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2143731

ABSTRACT

Positive-strand RNA virus RNA genome replication occurs in membrane-associated RNA replication complexes (RCs). Nodavirus RCs are outer mitochondrial membrane invaginations whose necked openings to the cytosol are "crowned" by a 12-fold symmetrical proteinaceous ring that functions as the main engine of RNA replication. Similar protein crowns recently visualized at the openings of alphavirus and coronavirus RCs highlight their broad conservation and functional importance. Using cryo-EM tomography, we earlier showed that the major nodavirus crown constituent is viral protein A, whose polymerase, RNA capping, membrane interaction and multimerization domains drive RC formation and function. Other viral proteins are strong candidates for unassigned EM density in the crown. RNA-binding RNAi inhibitor protein B2 co-immunoprecipitates with protein A and could form crown subdomains that protect nascent viral RNA and dsRNA templates. Capsid protein may interact with the crown since nodavirus virion assembly has spatial and other links to RNA replication. Using cryoelectron tomography and complementary approaches, we show that, even when formed in mammalian cells, nodavirus RC crowns generated without B2 and capsid proteins are functional and structurally indistinguishable from mature crowns in infected Drosophila cells expressing all viral proteins. Thus, the only nodaviral factors essential to form functional RCs and crowns are RNA replication protein A and an RNA template. We also resolve apparent conflicts in prior results on B2 localization in infected cells, revealing at least two distinguishable pools of B2. The results have significant implications for crown structure, assembly, function and control as an antiviral target.


Subject(s)
RNA Replication , Viral Proteins , Animals , Viral Proteins/genetics , Virus Replication , Virus Assembly , Capsid Proteins/genetics , Drosophila/genetics , RNA, Double-Stranded , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , Mammals
15.
Viruses ; 14(10)2022 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2066560

ABSTRACT

The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) resulted in a major health crisis worldwide with its continuously emerging new strains, resulting in new viral variants that drive "waves" of infection. PCR or antigen detection assays have been routinely used to detect clinical infections; however, the emergence of these newer strains has presented challenges in detection. One of the alternatives has been to detect and characterize variant-specific peptide sequences from viral proteins using mass spectrometry (MS)-based methods. MS methods can potentially help in both diagnostics and vaccine development by understanding the dynamic changes in the viral proteome associated with specific strains and infection waves. In this study, we developed an accessible, flexible, and shareable bioinformatics workflow that was implemented in the Galaxy Platform to detect variant-specific peptide sequences from MS data derived from the clinical samples. We demonstrated the utility of the workflow by characterizing published clinical data from across the world during various pandemic waves. Our analysis identified six SARS-CoV-2 variant-specific peptides suitable for confident detection by MS in commonly collected clinical samples.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/diagnosis , Proteome , Peptides , Viral Proteins/genetics
16.
Microbiol Spectr ; 10(5): e0232222, 2022 Oct 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2053139

ABSTRACT

Over the last 2 years, several global virus-host interactome studies have been published with SARS-CoV-2 proteins with the purpose of better understanding how specific viral proteins can subvert or utilize different cellular processes to promote viral infection and pathogenesis. However, most of the virus-host protein interactions have not yet been confirmed experimentally, and their biological significance is largely unknown. The goal of this study was to verify the interaction of NSP5, the main protease of SARS-CoV-2, with the host epigenetic factor histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2) and test if HDAC2 is required for NSP5-mediated inhibition of the type I interferon signaling pathway. Our results show that NSP5 can significantly reduce the expression of a subset of immune response genes such as IL-6, IL-1ß, and IFNß, which requires NSP5's protease activity. We also found that NSP5 can inhibit Sendai virus-, RNA sensor-, and DNA sensor-mediated induction of IFNß promoter, block the IFN response pathway, and reduce the expression of IFN-stimulated genes. We also provide evidence for HDAC2 interacting with IRF3, and NSP5 can abrogate their interaction by binding to both IRF3 and HDAC2. In addition, we found that HDAC2 plays an inhibitory role in the regulation of IFNß and IFN-induced promoters, but our results indicate that HDAC2 is not involved in NSP5-mediated inhibition of IFNß gene expression. Taken together, our data show that NSP5 interacts with HDAC2 but NSP5 inhibits the IFNß gene expression and interferon-signaling pathway in an HDAC2-independent manner. IMPORTANCE SARS-CoV-2 has developed multiple strategies to antagonize the host antiviral response, such as blocking the IFN signaling pathway, which favors the replication and spreading of the virus. A recent SARS-CoV-2 protein interaction mapping revealed that the main viral protease NSP5 interacts with the host epigenetic factor HDAC2, but the interaction was not confirmed experimentally and its biological importance remains unclear. Here, we not only verified the interaction of HDAC2 with NSP5, but we also found that HDAC2 also binds to IRF3, and NSP5 can disrupt the IRF3-HDAC2 complex. Furthermore, our results show that NSP5 can efficiently repress the IFN signaling pathway regardless of whether viral infections, RNA, or DNA sensors activated it. However, our data indicate that HDAC2 is not involved in NSP5-mediated inhibition of IFNß promoter induction and IFNß gene expression.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Interferon Type I , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Histone Deacetylase 2/metabolism , Interleukin-6 , Signal Transduction , Interferon-beta/genetics , Interferon-beta/metabolism , Interferons , Viral Proteins/genetics , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Peptide Hydrolases/metabolism , DNA , RNA , Viral Proteases , Interferon Type I/metabolism
17.
Nature ; 610(7931): 381-388, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2050416

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged at the end of 2019 and caused the devastating global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), in part because of its ability to effectively suppress host cell responses1-3. In rare cases, viral proteins dampen antiviral responses by mimicking critical regions of human histone proteins4-8, particularly those containing post-translational modifications required for transcriptional regulation9-11. Recent work has demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 markedly disrupts host cell epigenetic regulation12-14. However, how SARS-CoV-2 controls the host cell epigenome and whether it uses histone mimicry to do so remain unclear. Here we show that the SARS-CoV-2 protein encoded by ORF8 (ORF8) functions as a histone mimic of the ARKS motifs in histone H3 to disrupt host cell epigenetic regulation. ORF8 is associated with chromatin, disrupts regulation of critical histone post-translational modifications and promotes chromatin compaction. Deletion of either the ORF8 gene or the histone mimic site attenuates the ability of SARS-CoV-2 to disrupt host cell chromatin, affects the transcriptional response to infection and attenuates viral genome copy number. These findings demonstrate a new function of ORF8 and a mechanism through which SARS-CoV-2 disrupts host cell epigenetic regulation. Further, this work provides a molecular basis for the finding that SARS-CoV-2 lacking ORF8 is associated with decreased severity of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Epigenesis, Genetic , Histones , Host Microbial Interactions , Molecular Mimicry , SARS-CoV-2 , Viral Proteins , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Chromatin/genetics , Chromatin/metabolism , Chromatin Assembly and Disassembly , Epigenome/genetics , Histones/chemistry , Histones/metabolism , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/metabolism
18.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(19)2022 Sep 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2043768

ABSTRACT

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, understanding the pathology of the SARS-CoV-2 RNA virus and its life cycle has been the priority of many researchers. Currently, new variants of the virus have emerged with various levels of pathogenicity and abundance within the human-host population. Although much of viral pathogenicity is attributed to the viral Spike protein's binding affinity to human lung cells' ACE2 receptor, comprehensive knowledge on the distinctive features of viral variants that might affect their life cycle and pathogenicity is yet to be attained. Recent in vivo studies into the RNA structure of the SARS-CoV-2 genome have revealed certain long-range RNA-RNA interactions. Using in silico predictions and a large population of SARS-CoV-2 sequences, we observed variant-specific evolutionary changes for certain long-range RRIs. We also found statistical evidence for the existence of one of the thermodynamic-based RRI predictions, namely Comp1, in the Beta variant sequences. A similar test that disregarded sequence variant information did not, however, lead to significant results. When performing population-based analyses, aggregate tests may fail to identify novel interactions due to variant-specific changes. Variant-specific analyses can result in de novo RRI identification.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Viral Proteins/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Pandemics , Polyproteins/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
19.
PLoS One ; 17(9): e0260331, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2009678

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 has affected people worldwide as the causative agent of COVID-19. The virus is related to the highly lethal SARS-CoV-1 responsible for the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak in Asia. Research is ongoing to understand why both viruses have different spreading capacities and mortality rates. Like other beta coronaviruses, RNA-RNA interactions occur between different parts of the viral genomic RNA, resulting in discontinuous transcription and production of various sub-genomic RNAs. These sub-genomic RNAs are then translated into other viral proteins. In this work, we performed a comparative analysis for novel long-range RNA-RNA interactions that may involve the Spike region. Comparing in-silico fragment-based predictions between reference sequences of SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 revealed several predictions amongst which a thermodynamically stable long-range RNA-RNA interaction between (23660-23703 Spike) and (28025-28060 ORF8) unique to SARS-CoV-2 was observed. The patterns of sequence variation using data gathered worldwide further supported the predicted stability of the sub-interacting region (23679-23690 Spike) and (28031-28042 ORF8). Such RNA-RNA interactions can potentially impact viral life cycle including sub-genomic RNA production rates.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Proteins , Genome, Viral , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics
20.
Medicine (Baltimore) ; 101(35): e29554, 2022 Sep 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2008659

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Coronavirus (CoV) disease (COVID-19) identified in Wuhan, China, in 2019, is mainly characterized by atypical pneumonia and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and is caused by SARS CoV-2, which belongs to the Coronaviridae family. Determining the underlying disease mechanisms is central to the identification and development of COVID-19-specific drugs for effective treatment and prevention of human-to-human transmission, disease complications, and deaths. METHODS: Here, next-generation RNA sequencing (RNA Seq) data were obtained using Illumina Next Seq 500 from SARS CoV-infected A549 cells and mock-treated A549 cells from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) (GSE147507), and quality control (QC) was assessed before RNA Seq analysis using CLC Genomics Workbench 20.0. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were imported into BioJupies to decipher COVID-19 induced signaling pathways and small molecules derived from chemical synthesis or natural sources to mimic or reverse COVID -19 specific gene signatures. In addition, iPathwayGuide was used to identify COVID-19-specific signaling pathways, as well as drugs and natural products with anti-COVID-19 potential. RESULTS: Here, we identified the potential activation of upstream regulators such as signal transducer and activator of transcription 2 (STAT2), interferon regulatory factor 9 (IRF9), and interferon beta (IFNß), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1ß), and interferon regulatory factor 3 (IRF3). COVID-19 infection activated key infectious disease-specific immune-related signaling pathways such as influenza A, viral protein interaction with cytokine and cytokine receptors, measles, Epstein-Barr virus infection, and IL-17 signaling pathway. Besides, we identified drugs such as prednisolone, methylprednisolone, diclofenac, compound JQ1, and natural products such as Withaferin-A and JinFuKang as candidates for further experimental validation of COVID-19 therapy. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, we have used the in silico next-generation knowledge discovery (NGKD) methods to discover COVID-19-associated pathways and specific therapeutics that have the potential to ameliorate the disease pathologies associated with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Biological Products , COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Epstein-Barr Virus Infections , A549 Cells , Cytokines/metabolism , Diclofenac , Herpesvirus 4, Human/genetics , Humans , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/genetics , Interferon Regulatory Factor-3/metabolism , Interferon-Stimulated Gene Factor 3, gamma Subunit/genetics , Interferon-Stimulated Gene Factor 3, gamma Subunit/metabolism , Interferon-beta , Interleukin-17/metabolism , Interleukin-1beta/metabolism , Methylprednisolone , RNA , Receptors, Cytokine/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , STAT2 Transcription Factor , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Viral Proteins/genetics
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