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1.
Protein J ; 39(3): 198-216, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718840

ABSTRACT

The devastating effects of the recent global pandemic (termed COVID-19 for "coronavirus disease 2019") caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS CoV-2) are paramount with new cases and deaths growing at an exponential rate. In order to provide a better understanding of SARS CoV-2, this article will review the proteins found in the SARS CoV-2 that caused this global pandemic.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/chemistry , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Betacoronavirus/genetics , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/metabolism , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins , Drug Discovery/methods , Genome, Viral , Host-Pathogen Interactions/drug effects , Humans , Nucleocapsid Proteins/chemistry , Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Nucleocapsid Proteins/metabolism , Pandemics , Phosphoproteins , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/metabolism , Polyproteins , Protein Interaction Maps/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2 , Sequence Alignment , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Viral Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/genetics , Viral Matrix Proteins/metabolism , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Viroporin Proteins
2.
J Virol ; 96(3): e0184221, 2022 02 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1691423

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a beta coronavirus that emerged in 2012, causing severe pneumonia and renal failure. MERS-CoV encodes five accessory proteins. Some of them have been shown to interfere with host antiviral immune response. However, the roles of protein 8b in innate immunity and viral virulence was rarely studied. Here, we introduced individual MERS-CoV accessory protein genes into the genome of an attenuated murine coronavirus (Mouse hepatitis virus, MHV), respectively, and found accessory protein 8b could enhance viral replication in vivo and in vitro and increase the lethality of infected mice. RNA-seq analysis revealed that protein 8b could significantly inhibit type I interferon production (IFN-I) and innate immune response in mice infected with MHV expressing protein 8b. We also found that MERS-CoV protein 8b could initiate from multiple internal methionine sites and at least three protein variants were identified. Residues 1-23 of protein 8b was demonstrated to be responsible for increased virulence in vivo. In addition, the inhibitory effect on IFN-I of protein 8b might not contribute to its virulence enhancement as aa1-23 deletion did not affect IFN-I production in vitro and in vivo. Next, we also found that protein 8b was localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)/Golgi membrane in infected cells, which was disrupted by C-terminal region aa 88-112 deletion. This study will provide new insight into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection. IMPORTANCE Multiple coronaviruses (CoV) cause severe respiratory infections and become global public health threats such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2. Each coronavirus contains different numbers of accessory proteins which show high variability among different CoVs. Accessory proteins are demonstrated to play essential roles in pathogenesis of CoVs. MERS-CoV contains 5 accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5, 8b), and deletion of all four accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5), significantly affects MERS-CoV replication and pathogenesis. However, whether ORF8b also regulates MERS-CoV infection is unknown. Here, we constructed mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) recombinant virus expressing MERS-CoV protein 8b and demonstrated protein 8b could significantly enhance the virulence of MHV, which is mediated by N-terminal domain of protein 8b. This study will shed light on the understanding of pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection.


Subject(s)
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Murine hepatitis virus/physiology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Animals , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Mice , Mortality , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Tropism , Virulence/genetics , Virulence Factors/genetics
3.
RNA Biol ; 19(1): 1-11, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1569455

ABSTRACT

The role for circulating miRNAs as biomarkers of the COVID-19 disease remains uncertain. We analysed the circulating miRNA profile in twelve COVID-19 patients with moderate-severe disease. This analysis was conducted by performing next generation sequencing (NGS) followed by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). Compared with healthy controls, we detected significant changes in the circulating miRNA profile of COVID-19 patients. The miRNAs that were significantly altered in all the COVID-19 patients were miR-150-5p, miR-375, miR-122-5p, miR-494-3p, miR-3197, miR-4690-5p, miR-1915-3p, and miR-3652. Infection assays performed using miRNA mimics in HEK-293 T cells determined miR-150-5p to have a crucial role in SARS-CoV-2 infection and this was based on the following data: (i) miR-150-5p mimic lowered in vitro SARS-CoV-2 infection; (ii) miR-150-5p inhibitor reversed the effects of miR-150-5p mimic on SARS-CoV-2 infection of cells; and (iii) a novel miRNA recognition element (MRE) was identified in the coding strand of SARS-CoV-2 nsp10, the expression of which could be inhibited by miR-150-5p mimic. Our findings identified crucial miRNA footprints in COVID-19 patients with moderate-severe disease. A combination of co-transfection and Western blotting experiments also determined the ability of miR-150-5p to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 infection via directly interacting with MRE in the coding strand of nsp10. Our investigation showed that a sharp decline in the miR-150-5p plasma levels in COVID-19 patients may support enhanced SARS-CoV-2 infection. Furthermore, this study provides insight into one possible mechanism by which COVID-19-induced changes to miR-150-5p levels may promote SARS-CoV-2 infection via modulating nsp10 expression.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation, Viral , MicroRNAs/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/biosynthesis , Animals , COVID-19/genetics , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , HEK293 Cells , Humans , MicroRNAs/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Vero Cells , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
4.
J Virol ; 96(3): e0184221, 2022 02 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1532965

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a beta coronavirus that emerged in 2012, causing severe pneumonia and renal failure. MERS-CoV encodes five accessory proteins. Some of them have been shown to interfere with host antiviral immune response. However, the roles of protein 8b in innate immunity and viral virulence was rarely studied. Here, we introduced individual MERS-CoV accessory protein genes into the genome of an attenuated murine coronavirus (Mouse hepatitis virus, MHV), respectively, and found accessory protein 8b could enhance viral replication in vivo and in vitro and increase the lethality of infected mice. RNA-seq analysis revealed that protein 8b could significantly inhibit type I interferon production (IFN-I) and innate immune response in mice infected with MHV expressing protein 8b. We also found that MERS-CoV protein 8b could initiate from multiple internal methionine sites and at least three protein variants were identified. Residues 1-23 of protein 8b was demonstrated to be responsible for increased virulence in vivo. In addition, the inhibitory effect on IFN-I of protein 8b might not contribute to its virulence enhancement as aa1-23 deletion did not affect IFN-I production in vitro and in vivo. Next, we also found that protein 8b was localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)/Golgi membrane in infected cells, which was disrupted by C-terminal region aa 88-112 deletion. This study will provide new insight into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection. IMPORTANCE Multiple coronaviruses (CoV) cause severe respiratory infections and become global public health threats such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2. Each coronavirus contains different numbers of accessory proteins which show high variability among different CoVs. Accessory proteins are demonstrated to play essential roles in pathogenesis of CoVs. MERS-CoV contains 5 accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5, 8b), and deletion of all four accessory proteins (protein 3, 4a, 4b, 5), significantly affects MERS-CoV replication and pathogenesis. However, whether ORF8b also regulates MERS-CoV infection is unknown. Here, we constructed mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) recombinant virus expressing MERS-CoV protein 8b and demonstrated protein 8b could significantly enhance the virulence of MHV, which is mediated by N-terminal domain of protein 8b. This study will shed light on the understanding of pathogenesis of MERS-CoV infection.


Subject(s)
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Murine hepatitis virus/physiology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Animals , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Mice , Mortality , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Tropism , Virulence/genetics , Virulence Factors/genetics
5.
Viruses ; 13(9)2021 08 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1390783

ABSTRACT

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic exemplifies the general need to better understand viral infections. The positive single-strand RNA genome of its causative agent, the SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), encodes all viral enzymes. In this work, we focused on one particular methyltransferase (MTase), nsp16, which, in complex with nsp10, is capable of methylating the first nucleotide of a capped RNA strand at the 2'-O position. This process is part of a viral capping system and is crucial for viral evasion of the innate immune reaction. In light of recently discovered non-canonical RNA caps, we tested various dinucleoside polyphosphate-capped RNAs as substrates for nsp10-nsp16 MTase. We developed an LC-MS-based method and discovered four types of capped RNA (m7Gp3A(G)- and Gp3A(G)-RNA) that are substrates of the nsp10-nsp16 MTase. Our technique is an alternative to the classical isotope labelling approach for the measurement of 2'-O-MTase activity. Further, we determined the IC50 value of sinefungin to illustrate the use of our approach for inhibitor screening. In the future, this approach may be an alternative technique to the radioactive labelling method for screening inhibitors of any type of 2'-O-MTase.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Methyltransferases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Chromatography, Liquid , Gene Expression Regulation, Viral , Humans , Mass Spectrometry , Methylation , Methyltransferases/genetics , RNA Caps , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Substrate Specificity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
6.
FEBS J ; 288(17): 5130-5147, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1388264

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 virus has triggered a global pandemic with devastating consequences. The understanding of fundamental aspects of this virus is of extreme importance. In this work, we studied the viral ribonuclease nsp14, one of the most interferon antagonists from SARS-CoV-2. Nsp14 is a multifunctional protein with two distinct activities, an N-terminal 3'-to-5' exoribonuclease (ExoN) and a C-terminal N7-methyltransferase (N7-MTase), both critical for coronaviruses life cycle, indicating nsp14 as a prominent target for the development of antiviral drugs. In coronaviruses, nsp14 ExoN activity is stimulated through the interaction with the nsp10 protein. We have performed a biochemical characterization of nsp14-nsp10 complex from SARS-CoV-2. We confirm the 3'-5' exoribonuclease and MTase activities of nsp14 and the critical role of nsp10 in upregulating the nsp14 ExoN activity. Furthermore, we demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 nsp14 N7-MTase activity is functionally independent of the ExoN activity and nsp10. A model from SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-nsp10 complex allowed mapping key nsp10 residues involved in this interaction. Our results show that a stable interaction between nsp10 and nsp14 is required for the nsp14-mediated ExoN activity of SARS-CoV-2. We studied the role of conserved DEDD catalytic residues of SARS-CoV-2 nsp14 ExoN. Our results show that motif I of ExoN domain is essential for the nsp14 function, contrasting to the functionality of these residues in other coronaviruses, which can have important implications regarding the specific pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2. This work unraveled a basis for discovering inhibitors targeting specific amino acids in order to disrupt the assembly of this complex and interfere with coronaviruses replication.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Exoribonucleases/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Drug Design , Exoribonucleases/antagonists & inhibitors , Humans , Multiprotein Complexes/drug effects , Multiprotein Complexes/genetics , Protein Interaction Maps/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Virus Replication/genetics
7.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 49(9): 5382-5392, 2021 05 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387965

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 infection has posed unprecedented threat to global public health. The virus-encoded non-structural protein 14 (nsp14) is a bi-functional enzyme consisting of an exoribonuclease (ExoN) domain and a methyltransferase (MTase) domain and plays a pivotal role in viral replication. Here, we report the structure of SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN domain bound to its co-factor nsp10 and show that, compared to the SARS-CoV nsp10/nsp14-full-length complex, SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN retains an integral exoribonuclease fold and preserves an active configuration in the catalytic center. Analysis of the nsp10/nsp14-ExoN interface reveals a footprint in nsp10 extensively overlapping with that observed in the nsp10/nsp16 structure. A marked difference in the co-factor when engaging nsp14 and nsp16 lies in helix-α1', which is further experimentally ascertained to be involved in nsp14-binding but not in nsp16-engagement. Finally, we also show that nsp10/nsp14-ExoN is enzymatically active despite the absence of nsp14-MTase domain. These data demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 nsp10/nsp14-ExoN functions as an exoribonuclease with both structural and functional integrity.


Subject(s)
Biocatalysis , Exoribonucleases/chemistry , Exoribonucleases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Binding Sites , Crystallography, X-Ray , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Guanine , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/deficiency , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Protein Domains/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
9.
Viruses ; 13(8)2021 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1335227

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the causative agent of the coronavirus disease-19 pandemic. One of the key components of the coronavirus replication complex are the RNA methyltransferases (MTases), RNA-modifying enzymes crucial for RNA cap formation. Recently, the structure of the 2'-O MTase has become available; however, its biological characterization within the infected cells remains largely elusive. Here, we report a novel monoclonal antibody directed against the SARS-CoV-2 non-structural protein nsp10, a subunit of both the 2'-O RNA and N7 MTase protein complexes. Using this antibody, we investigated the subcellular localization of the SARS-CoV-2 MTases in cells infected with the SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Methyltransferases/metabolism , RNA Caps/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Antibodies, Monoclonal/analysis , Humans , Methyltransferases/analysis , Methyltransferases/genetics , Protein Transport , RNA Caps/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/analysis , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/analysis , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
10.
Science ; 373(6559): 1142-1146, 2021 Sep 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1329031

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus 3'-to-5' exoribonuclease (ExoN), residing in the nonstructural protein (nsp) 10­nsp14 complex, boosts replication fidelity by proofreading RNA synthesis and is critical for the virus life cycle. ExoN also recognizes and excises nucleotide analog inhibitors incorporated into the nascent RNA, undermining the effectiveness of nucleotide analog­based antivirals. Here we present cryo­electron microscopy structures of both wild-type and mutant severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) nsp10-nsp14 in complex with an RNA substrate bearing a 3'-end mismatch at resolutions ranging from 2.5 to 3.9 angstroms. The structures reveal the molecular determinants of ExoN substrate specificity and offer insight into the molecular mechanisms of mismatch correction during coronavirus RNA synthesis. Our findings provide guidance for rational design of improved anticoronavirus therapies.


Subject(s)
DNA Mismatch Repair , Exoribonucleases/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Drug Design , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Humans , Protein Domains , RNA, Viral/biosynthesis , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Substrate Specificity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
11.
Biochem J ; 478(13): 2481-2497, 2021 07 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1289949

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented itself as one of the most critical public health challenges of the century, with SARS-CoV-2 being the third member of the Coronaviridae family to cause a fatal disease in humans. There is currently only one antiviral compound, remdesivir, that can be used for the treatment of COVID-19. To identify additional potential therapeutics, we investigated the enzymatic proteins encoded in the SARS-CoV-2 genome. In this study, we focussed on the viral RNA cap methyltransferases, which play key roles in enabling viral protein translation and facilitating viral escape from the immune system. We expressed and purified both the guanine-N7 methyltransferase nsp14, and the nsp16 2'-O-methyltransferase with its activating cofactor, nsp10. We performed an in vitro high-throughput screen for inhibitors of nsp14 using a custom compound library of over 5000 pharmaceutical compounds that have previously been characterised in either clinical or basic research. We identified four compounds as potential inhibitors of nsp14, all of which also showed antiviral capacity in a cell-based model of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Three of the four compounds also exhibited synergistic effects on viral replication with remdesivir.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Exoribonucleases/antagonists & inhibitors , Methyltransferases/antagonists & inhibitors , RNA Caps/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Small Molecule Libraries/pharmacology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/pharmacology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Chlorobenzenes/pharmacology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Enzyme Assays , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Exoribonucleases/isolation & purification , Exoribonucleases/metabolism , Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer , High-Throughput Screening Assays , Indazoles/pharmacology , Indenes/pharmacology , Indoles/pharmacology , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/isolation & purification , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Nitriles/pharmacology , Phenothiazines/pharmacology , Purines/pharmacology , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Small Molecule Libraries/chemistry , Substrate Specificity , Trifluperidol/pharmacology , Vero Cells , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/isolation & purification , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/isolation & purification , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism
12.
Viruses ; 13(6)2021 06 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1270126

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus accessory proteins are a unique set of proteins whose genes are interspersed among or within the genes encoding structural proteins. Different coronavirus genera, or even different species within the same coronavirus genus, encode varying amounts of accessory proteins, leading to genus- or species-specificity. Though accessory proteins are dispensable for the replication of coronavirus in vitro, they play important roles in regulating innate immunity, viral proliferation, and pathogenicity. The function of accessory proteins on virus infection and pathogenesis is an area of particular interest. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on accessory proteins of several representative coronaviruses that infect humans or animals, including the emerging severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), with an emphasis on their roles in interaction between virus and host, mainly involving stress response, innate immunity, autophagy, and apoptosis. The cross-talking among these pathways is also discussed.


Subject(s)
Immunity, Innate , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Immune Evasion , Open Reading Frames , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Virus Replication
13.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 3287, 2021 06 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253936

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 nsp16/nsp10 enzyme complex modifies the 2'-OH of the first transcribed nucleotide of the viral mRNA by covalently attaching a methyl group to it. The 2'-O methylation of the first nucleotide converts the status of mRNA cap from Cap-0 to Cap-1, and thus, helps the virus evade immune surveillance in host cells. Here, we report two structures of nsp16/nsp10 representing pre- and post-release states of the RNA product (Cap-1). We observe overall widening of the enzyme upon product formation, and an inward twisting motion in the substrate binding region upon product release. These conformational changes reset the enzyme for the next round of catalysis. The structures also identify a unique binding mode and the importance of a divalent metal ion for 2'-O methylation. We also describe underlying structural basis for the perturbed enzymatic activity of a clinical variant of SARS-CoV-2, and a previous SARS-CoV outbreak strain.


Subject(s)
Magnesium/chemistry , RNA Caps/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Binding Sites , Biocatalysis , Cloning, Molecular , Crystallography, X-Ray , Escherichia coli/genetics , Escherichia coli/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation, Viral , Humans , Magnesium/metabolism , Methylation , Methyltransferases , Models, Molecular , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , RNA Caps/chemistry , RNA Caps/genetics , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , S-Adenosylmethionine/chemistry , S-Adenosylmethionine/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Sequence Alignment , Sequence Homology, Amino Acid , Substrate Specificity , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
14.
Cell Rep ; 35(9): 109197, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1230395

ABSTRACT

Over 950,000 whole-genome sequences of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) have been determined for viruses isolated from around the world. These sequences are critical for understanding the spread and evolution of SARS-CoV-2. Using global phylogenomics, we show that mutations frequently occur in the C-terminal end of ORF7a. We isolate one of these mutant viruses from a patient sample and use viral challenge experiments to link this isolate (ORF7aΔ115) to a growth defect. ORF7a is implicated in immune modulation, and we show that the C-terminal truncation negates anti-immune activities of the protein, which results in elevated type I interferon response to the viral infection. Collectively, this work indicates that ORF7a mutations occur frequently, and that these changes affect viral mechanisms responsible for suppressing the immune response.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Immunity , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/immunology , Animals , Chlorocebus aethiops , Genome, Viral , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Interferon Type I/immunology , Mutation , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
15.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 49(9): 5382-5392, 2021 05 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217861

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 infection has posed unprecedented threat to global public health. The virus-encoded non-structural protein 14 (nsp14) is a bi-functional enzyme consisting of an exoribonuclease (ExoN) domain and a methyltransferase (MTase) domain and plays a pivotal role in viral replication. Here, we report the structure of SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN domain bound to its co-factor nsp10 and show that, compared to the SARS-CoV nsp10/nsp14-full-length complex, SARS-CoV-2 nsp14-ExoN retains an integral exoribonuclease fold and preserves an active configuration in the catalytic center. Analysis of the nsp10/nsp14-ExoN interface reveals a footprint in nsp10 extensively overlapping with that observed in the nsp10/nsp16 structure. A marked difference in the co-factor when engaging nsp14 and nsp16 lies in helix-α1', which is further experimentally ascertained to be involved in nsp14-binding but not in nsp16-engagement. Finally, we also show that nsp10/nsp14-ExoN is enzymatically active despite the absence of nsp14-MTase domain. These data demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 nsp10/nsp14-ExoN functions as an exoribonuclease with both structural and functional integrity.


Subject(s)
Biocatalysis , Exoribonucleases/chemistry , Exoribonucleases/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Binding Sites , Crystallography, X-Ray , Exoribonucleases/genetics , Guanine , Methyltransferases/chemistry , Methyltransferases/deficiency , Methyltransferases/genetics , Methyltransferases/metabolism , Models, Molecular , Protein Domains/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics
16.
SLAS Discov ; 26(6): 757-765, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1194439

ABSTRACT

Frequent outbreaks of novel coronaviruses (CoVs), highlighted by the current severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, necessitate the development of therapeutics that could be easily and effectively administered worldwide. The conserved mRNA-capping process enables CoVs to evade their host immune system and is a target for antiviral development. Nonstructural protein (nsp) 16 in complex with nsp10 catalyzes the final step of coronaviral mRNA capping through its 2'-O-methylation activity. Like other methyltransferases, the SARS-CoV-2 nsp10-nsp16 complex is druggable. However, the availability of an optimized assay for high-throughput screening (HTS) is an unmet need. Here, we report the development of a radioactivity-based assay for the methyltransferase activity of the nsp10-nsp16 complex in a 384-well format, kinetic characterization, and optimization of the assay for HTS (Z' factor = 0.83). Considering the high conservation of nsp16 across known CoV species, the potential inhibitors targeting the SARS-CoV-2 nsp10-nsp16 complex may also be effective against other emerging pathogenic CoVs.


Subject(s)
Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , High-Throughput Screening Assays , RNA Caps/antagonists & inhibitors , RNA, Viral/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Adenosine/chemistry , Adenosine/pharmacology , COVID-19/virology , Cloning, Molecular , Enzyme Assays , Enzyme Inhibitors/chemistry , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Escherichia coli/genetics , Escherichia coli/metabolism , Gene Expression , Genetic Vectors/chemistry , Genetic Vectors/metabolism , Humans , Kinetics , Methylation , Methyltransferases , Models, Molecular , RNA Caps/genetics , RNA Caps/metabolism , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , Recombinant Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/enzymology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Tritium , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism
17.
SLAS Discov ; 26(5): 620-627, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1021348

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, evades the human immune system by capping its RNA. This process protects the viral RNA and is essential for its replication. Multiple viral proteins are involved in this RNA capping process, including the nonstructural protein 16 (nsp16), which is an S-adenosyl-l-methionine (SAM)-dependent 2'-O-methyltransferase. Nsp16 is significantly active when in complex with another nonstructural protein, nsp10, which plays a key role in its stability and activity. Here we report the development of a fluorescence polarization (FP)-based RNA displacement assay for nsp10-nsp16 complex in a 384-well format with a Z' factor of 0.6, suitable for high-throughput screening. In this process, we purified the nsp10-nsp16 complex to higher than 95% purity and confirmed its binding to the methyl donor SAM, the product of the reaction, S-adenosyl-l-homocysteine (SAH), and a common methyltransferase inhibitor, sinefungin, using isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). The assay was further validated by screening a library of 1124 drug-like compounds. This assay provides a cost-effective high-throughput method for screening the nsp10-nsp16 complex for RNA competitive inhibitors toward developing COVID-19 therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , High-Throughput Screening Assays , RNA, Viral/antagonists & inhibitors , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Small Molecule Libraries/pharmacology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine/pharmacology , Binding, Competitive , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Fluorescence Polarization , Gene Expression Regulation , Host-Pathogen Interactions/drug effects , Humans , Methyltransferases , Protein Binding , RNA Caps/antagonists & inhibitors , RNA Caps/genetics , RNA Caps/metabolism , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Signal Transduction , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/metabolism , Virus Replication
18.
J Mol Biol ; 433(2): 166725, 2021 01 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-947287

ABSTRACT

The unprecedented scale of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has catalyzed an intense effort of the global scientific community to unravel different aspects of the disease in a short time. One of the crucial aspects of these developments is the determination of more than three hundred experimental structures of SARS-CoV-2 proteins in the last few months. These include structures of viral non-structural, structural, and accessory proteins and their complexes determined by either X-ray diffraction or cryo-electron microscopy. These structures elucidate the intricate working of different components of the viral machinery at the atomic level during different steps of the viral life cycle, including attachment to the host cell, viral genome replication and transcription, and genome packaging and assembly of the virion. Some of these proteins are also potential targets for drug development against the disease. In this review, we discuss important structural features of different SARS-CoV-2 proteins with their function, and their potential as a target for therapeutic interventions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/chemistry , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Genome, Viral , Humans , Life Cycle Stages/genetics , Models, Molecular , Protein Conformation , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Viral Structural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Structural Proteins/genetics , Virus Replication
19.
Epidemiol Infect ; 148: e262, 2020 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-889104

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has recently caused acute respiratory distress syndrome affecting more than 200 countries with varied mortality rate. Successive genetic variants of SARS-CoV-2 become evident across the globe immediately after its complete genome sequencing. Here, we found a decent association of SARS-CoV-2 ORF3a mutation with higher mortality rate. Extensive in silico studies revealed several amino acid changes in ORF3a protein which ultimately leads to diverse structural modifications like B cell epitope loss, gain/loss of phosphorylation site and loss of leucine zipper motif. We could further relate these changes to the enhanced antigenic diversity of SARS-CoV-2. Through protein−protein network analysis and functional annotation studies, we obtained a close federation of ORF3a protein with host immune response via divergent signal transduction pathways including JAK-STAT, chemokine and cytokine-related pathways. Our data not only unveil the fairly appreciable association of ORF3a mutation with higher mortality rate, but also suggest a potential mechanistic insight towards the immunopathogenic manifestation of SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Amino Acid Sequence , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Cytokines/immunology , Humans , Immune Evasion , Mutation , Mutation Rate , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , SARS-CoV-2 , Signal Transduction , Viroporin Proteins
20.
Biochem J ; 477(5): 1009-1019, 2020 03 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-827308

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus is the causative agent of a respiratory disease with a high case fatality rate. During the formation of the coronaviral replication/transcription complex, essential steps include processing of the conserved polyprotein nsp7-10 region by the main protease Mpro and subsequent complex formation of the released nsp's. Here, we analyzed processing of the coronavirus nsp7-10 region using native mass spectrometry showing consumption of substrate, rise and fall of intermediate products and complexation. Importantly, there is a clear order of cleavage efficiencies, which is influenced by the polyprotein tertiary structure. Furthermore, the predominant product is an nsp7+8(2 : 2) hetero-tetramer with nsp8 scaffold. In conclusion, native MS, opposed to other methods, can expose the processing dynamics of viral polyproteins and the landscape of protein interactions in one set of experiments. Thereby, new insights into protein interactions, essential for generation of viral progeny, were provided, with relevance for development of antivirals.


Subject(s)
RNA-Binding Proteins/genetics , Sequence Alignment/methods , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/genetics , Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , Cysteine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Cysteine Endopeptidases/genetics , Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer , Protein Structure, Secondary , RNA-Binding Proteins/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins/chemistry , Virus Replication/physiology
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