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1.
PLoS One ; 17(6): e0270609, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2196920

ABSTRACT

Covid-19 progression shows sex-dependent features. It is hypothesized that a better Covid-19 survival rate in females can be attributed to the presence of higher 17ß-estradiol (E2) levels in women than in men. Virus SARS-CoV-2 is enabled to enter the cell with the use of angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). The expression of several renin-angiotensin system components has been shown to exert a rhythmic pattern, and a role of the circadian system in their regulation has been implicated. Therefore, the aim of the study is to elucidate possible interference between E2 signalling and the circadian system in the regulation of the expression of ACE2 mRNA and functionally related molecules. E2 was administered at a dosage of 40 µg/kg/day for 7 days to male Wistar rats, and sampling of the lungs and colon was performed during a 24-h cycle. The daily pattern of expression of molecules facilitating SARS-CoV-2 entry into the cell, clock genes and E2 receptors was analysed. As a consequence of E2 administration, a rhythm in ACE2 and TMPRSS2 mRNA expression was observed in the lungs but not in the colon. ADAM17 mRNA expression showed a pronounced rhythmic pattern in both tissues that was not influenced by E2 treatment. ESR1 mRNA expression exerted a rhythmic pattern, which was diminished by E2 treatment. The influence of E2 administration on ESR2 and GPER1 mRNA expression was greater in the lungs than in the colon as a significant rhythm in ESR2 and GPER1 mRNA expression appeared only in the lungs after E2 treatment. E2 administration also increased the amplitude of bmal1 expression in the lungs, which implicates altered functioning of peripheral oscillators in response to E2 treatment. The daily pattern of components of the SARS-CoV-2 entrance pathway and their responsiveness to E2 should be considered in the timing of pharmacological therapy for Covid-19.


Subject(s)
ADAM17 Protein , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Colon , Estradiol , Lung , Receptors, Estradiol , ADAM17 Protein/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Colon/drug effects , Colon/metabolism , Estradiol/pharmacology , Female , Lung/metabolism , Male , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , RNA, Messenger/biosynthesis , RNA, Messenger/genetics , Rats , Rats, Wistar , Receptors, Estradiol/genetics , Receptors, Estradiol/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Transcription, Genetic/drug effects , Virus Internalization
2.
J Am Chem Soc ; 144(36): 16604-16611, 2022 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2185543

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the infectious agent of the COVID-19 pandemic, remains a global medical problem. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) was identified as the primary viral entry receptor, and transmembrane serine protease 2 primes the spike protein for membrane fusion. However, ACE2 expression is generally low and variable across tissues, suggesting that auxiliary receptors facilitate viral entry. Identifying these factors is critical for understanding SARS-Cov-2 pathophysiology and developing new countermeasures. However, profiling host-virus interactomes involves extensive genetic screening or complex computational predictions. Here, we leverage the photocatalytic proximity labeling platform µMap to rapidly profile the spike interactome in human cells and identify eight novel candidate receptors. We systemically validate their functionality in SARS-CoV-2 pseudoviral uptake assays with both Wuhan and Delta spike variants and show that dual expression of ACE2 with either neuropilin-2, ephrin receptor A7, solute carrier family 6 member 15, or myelin and lymphocyte protein 2 significantly enhances viral uptake. Collectively, our data show that SARS-CoV-2 synergistically engages several host factors for cell entry and establishes µMap as a powerful tool for rapidly interrogating host-virus interactomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Humans , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Internalization
4.
Viruses ; 14(11)2022 Nov 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2110271

ABSTRACT

The spike (S) protein of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) facilitates viral entry into host cells and is the key target for neutralizing antibodies. The SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.620 carries fifteen mutations in the S protein and is spread in Africa, the US and Europe, while lineage R.1 harbors four mutations in S and infections were observed in several countries, particularly Japan and the US. However, the impact of the mutations in B.1.620 and R.1 S proteins on antibody-mediated neutralization and host cell entry are largely unknown. Here, we report that these mutations are compatible with robust ACE2 binding and entry into cell lines, and they markedly reduce neutralization by vaccine-induced antibodies. Our results reveal evasion of neutralizing antibodies by B.1.620 and R.1, which might have contributed to the spread of these lineages.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Virus Internalization , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Mutation
5.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(22)2022 Nov 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2110130

ABSTRACT

Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is a target of interest for both COVID-19 and cardiovascular disease management. Even though lower ACE2 levels may be beneficial in SARS-CoV-2 infectivity, maintaining the ACE1/ACE2 balance is also crucial for cardiovascular health. So far, reports describing conditions capable of altering ACE2 protein levels, especially via dietary components, are limited. In this study, the effects of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n3-PUFA) on the protein levels of ACE1 and ACE2 in rodent tissues, human endothelial and kidney cell lines, and human plasma were examined. The ability of n3-PUFA to affect the entry of the SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus into cells was also tested. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and in some cases eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), but not α-linoleic acid (ALA), reduced both ACE1 and ACE2 (non-glycosylated p100 and glycosylated p130 forms) in the heart, aorta, and kidneys of obese rats, as well as in human EA.hy926 endothelial and HEK293 kidney cells. Dietary supplementation with either DHA or ALA had no effect on plasma soluble ACE2 levels in humans. However, treatment of HEK293 cells with 80 and 125 µM DHA for 16 h inhibited the entry of the SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus. These results strongly suggest that DHA treatment may reduce the ability of SARS-CoV-2 to infect cells via a mechanism involving a decrease in the absolute level of ACE2 protein as well as its glycosylation. Our findings warrant further evaluation of long-chain n3-PUFA supplements as a novel option for restricting SARS-CoV-2 infectivity in the general population.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Fatty Acids, Omega-3 , Humans , Rats , Animals , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , SARS-CoV-2 , HEK293 Cells , Fatty Acids, Omega-3/pharmacology , Virus Internalization , Docosahexaenoic Acids/pharmacology
6.
Viruses ; 14(11)2022 Nov 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2116124

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is highly contagious and remains a major public health challenge despite the availability of effective vaccines. SARS-CoV-2 enters cells through the binding of its spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) to the human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor in concert with accessory receptors/molecules that facilitate viral attachment, internalization, and fusion. Although ACE2 plays a critical role in SARS-CoV-2 replication, its expression profiles are not completely associated with infection patterns, immune responses, and clinical manifestations. Additionally, SARS-CoV-2 infects cells that lack ACE2, and the infection is resistant to monoclonal antibodies against spike RBD in vitro, indicating that some human cells possess ACE2-independent alternative receptors, which can mediate SARS-CoV-2 entry. Here, we discuss these alternative receptors and their interactions with SARS-CoV-2 components for ACE2-independent viral entry. These receptors include CD147, AXL, CD209L/L-SIGN/CLEC4M, CD209/DC-SIGN/CLEC4L, CLEC4G/LSECtin, ASGR1/CLEC4H1, LDLRAD3, TMEM30A, and KREMEN1. Most of these receptors are known to be involved in the entry of other viruses and to modulate cellular functions and immune responses. The SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant exhibits altered cell tropism and an associated change in the cell entry pathway, indicating that emerging variants may use alternative receptors to escape the immune pressure against ACE2-dependent viral entry provided by vaccination against RBD. Understanding the role of ACE2-independent alternative receptors in SARS-CoV-2 viral entry and pathogenesis may provide avenues for the prevention of infection by SARS-CoV-2 variants and for the treatment of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Receptors, Virus , Virus Internalization , Humans , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , SARS-CoV-2
7.
ACS Chem Biol ; 17(7): 1937-1950, 2022 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2106315

ABSTRACT

Inhibition of the protein kinase CSNK2 with any of 30 specific and selective inhibitors representing different chemotypes, blocked replication of pathogenic human, bat, and murine ß-coronaviruses. The potency of in-cell CSNK2A target engagement across the set of inhibitors correlated with antiviral activity and genetic knockdown confirmed the essential role of the CSNK2 holoenzyme in ß-coronavirus replication. Spike protein endocytosis was blocked by CSNK2A inhibition, indicating that antiviral activity was due in part to a suppression of viral entry. CSNK2A inhibition may be a viable target for the development of anti-SARS-like ß-coronavirus drugs.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Coronavirus/genetics , Humans , Mice , Virus Internalization
9.
Viruses ; 14(11)2022 Oct 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2090366

ABSTRACT

The recently circulating SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.5 is rampaging the world with elevated transmissibility compared to the original SARS-CoV-2 strain. Immune escape of BA.5 was observed after treatment with many monoclonal antibodies, calling for broad-spectrum, immune-escape-evading therapeutics. In retrospect, we previously reported Kansetin as an ACE2 mimetic and a protein antagonist against SARS-CoV-2, which proved potent neutralization bioactivity on the Reference, Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Omicron strains of SARS-CoV-2. Since BA.5 is expected to rely on the interaction of the Spike complex with human ACE2 for cell entry, we reasonably assumed the lasting efficacy of the ACE2-mimicking Kansetin for neutralizing the new SARS-CoV-2 variant. The investigation was accordingly performed on in vitro Kansetin-Spike binding affinity by SPR and cell infection inhibition ability with pseudovirus and live virus assays. As a result, Kansetin showed dissociation constant KD and half inhibition concentration IC50 at the nanomolar to picomolar level, featuring a competent inhibition effect against the BA.5 sublineage. Conclusively, Kansetin is expected to be a promising therapeutic option against BA.5 and future SARS-CoV-2 sublineages.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Humans , Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Antibodies, Viral/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Virus Internalization , Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology
11.
J Extracell Vesicles ; 11(10): e12269, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2084354

ABSTRACT

Small Extracellular Vesicles (sEVs) are 50-200 nm in diameter vesicles delimited by a lipid bilayer, formed within the endosomal network or derived from the plasma membrane. They are secreted in various biological fluids, including airway nasal mucus. The goal of this work was to understand the role of sEVs present in the mucus (mu-sEVs) produced by human nasal epithelial cells (HNECs) in SARS-CoV-2 infection. We show that uninfected HNECs produce mu-sEVs containing SARS-CoV-2 receptor ACE2 and activated protease TMPRSS2. mu-sEVs cleave prefusion viral Spike proteins at the S1/S2 boundary, resulting in higher proportions of prefusion S proteins exposing their receptor binding domain in an 'open' conformation, thereby facilitating receptor binding at the cell surface. We show that the role of nasal mu-sEVs is to complete prefusion Spike priming performed by intracellular furin during viral egress from infected cells. This effect is mediated by vesicular TMPRSS2 activity, rendering SARS-CoV-2 virions prone to entry into target cells using the 'early', TMPRSS2-dependent pathway instead of the 'late', cathepsin-dependent route. These results indicate that prefusion Spike priming by mu-sEVs in the nasal cavity plays a role in viral tropism. They also show that nasal mucus does not protect from SARS-CoV-2 infection, but instead facilitates it.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Extracellular Vesicles , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Furin , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , SARS-CoV-2 , Proviruses/metabolism , Lipid Bilayers , Virus Internalization , Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Extracellular Vesicles/metabolism , Cathepsins
12.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(20)2022 Oct 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2082255

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 virus can utilize host cell proteases to facilitate cell entry, whereby the Spike (S) protein is cleaved at two specific sites to enable membrane fusion. Furin, transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2), and cathepsin L (CatL) are the major proteases implicated, and are thus targets for anti-viral therapy. The human serpin (serine protease inhibitor) alpha-1 antitrypsin (A1AT) shows inhibitory activity for TMPRSS2, and has previously been found to suppress cell infection with SARS-CoV-2. Here, we have generated modified serpin inhibitors with increased specificity for these cellular proteases. Using SerpinB3 (SCCA-1), a cross-class inhibitor of CatL, as a scaffold, we have designed and produced reactive centre loop (RCL) variants to more specifically target both furin and TMPRSS2. Two further variants were generated by substituting the RCL P7-P1 with the spike protein S1/S2 cleavage site from either SARS-CoV-2 alpha or delta (P681R) sequences. Altered inhibitory specificity of purified recombinant proteins was verified in protease assays, with attenuated CatL inhibition and gain of furin or TMPRSS2 inhibition, as predicted, and modified serpins were shown to block S protein cleavage in vitro. Furthermore, the serpin variants were able to inhibit S-pseudoparticle entry into A549-ACE2-TMPRSS2 cells and suppress SARS-CoV-2 replication in Vero E6 cells expressing TMPRSS2. The construct designed to inhibit TMPRSS2 (B3-TMP) was most potent. It was more effective than A1AT for TMPRSS2 enzyme inhibition (with an eighteen-fold improvement in the second order inhibition rate constant) and for blocking SARS-CoV-2 viral replication. These findings advance the potential for serpin RCL mutagenesis to generate new inhibitors, and may lead to novel anti-viral biological molecules.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Serpins , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Furin/genetics , Furin/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Serpins/genetics , Serpins/pharmacology , Cathepsin L/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Virus Internalization , COVID-19/drug therapy , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Mutagenesis , Recombinant Proteins , Serine , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics
13.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 6100, 2022 Oct 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2077054

ABSTRACT

In cultured cells, SARS-CoV-2 infects cells via multiple pathways using different host proteases. Recent studies have shown that the furin and TMPRSS2 (furin/TMPRSS2)-dependent pathway plays a minor role in infection of the Omicron variant. Here, we confirm that Omicron uses the furin/TMPRSS2-dependent pathway inefficiently and enters cells mainly using the cathepsin-dependent endocytosis pathway in TMPRSS2-expressing VeroE6/TMPRSS2 and Calu-3 cells. This is the case despite efficient cleavage of the spike protein of Omicron. However, in the airways of TMPRSS2-knockout mice, Omicron infection is significantly reduced. We furthermore show that propagation of the mouse-adapted SARS-CoV-2 QHmusX strain and human clinical isolates of Beta and Gamma is reduced in TMPRSS2-knockout mice. Therefore, the Omicron variant isn't an exception in using TMPRSS2 in vivo, and analysis with TMPRSS2-knockout mice is important when evaluating SARS-CoV-2 variants. In conclusion, this study shows that TMPRSS2 is critically important for SARS-CoV-2 infection of murine airways, including the Omicron variant.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Humans , Mice , Cathepsins , Furin/genetics , Furin/metabolism , Mice, Knockout , Peptide Hydrolases , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Internalization
14.
Biochim Biophys Acta Biomembr ; 1864(11): 184031, 2022 11 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2068718

ABSTRACT

Mammarenaviruses include many significant worldwide-widespread human pathogens, among them Lassa virus (LASV), having a dramatic morbidity and mortality rate. They are a potential high-risk menace to the worldwide public health since there are no treatments and there is a high possibility of animal-to-human and human-to-human viral transmission. These viruses enter into the cells by endocytosis fusing its membrane envelope with the late endosomal membrane thanks to the glycoprotein GP2, a membrane fusion protein of class I. This protein contains different domains, among them the N-terminal fusion peptide (NFP), the internal fusion loop (IFL), the membrane proximal external region (MPER) and the transmembrane domain (TMD). All these domains are implicated in the membrane fusion process. In this work, we have used an all-atom molecular dynamics study to know the binding of these protein domains with a complex membrane mimicking the late endosome one. We show that the NFP/IFL domain is capable of spontaneously inserting into the membrane without a significant change of secondary structure, the MPER domain locates at the bilayer interface with an orientation parallel to the membrane surface and tends to interact with other MPER domains, and the TMD domain tilts inside the bilayer. Moreover, they predominantly interact with negatively charged phospholipids. Overall, these membrane-interacting domains would characterise a target that would make possible to find effective antiviral molecules against LASV in particular and Mammarenaviruses in general.


Subject(s)
Lassa virus , Virus Internalization , Animals , Endosomes , Humans , Membrane Fusion , Peptides
15.
Viruses ; 14(10)2022 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2066559

ABSTRACT

Viruses are dependent on host factors in order to efficiently establish an infection and replicate. Targeting the interactions of such host factors provides an attractive strategy to develop novel antivirals. Syntenin is a protein known to regulate the architecture of cellular membranes by its involvement in protein trafficking and has previously been shown to be important for human papilloma virus (HPV) infection. Here, we show that a highly potent and metabolically stable peptide inhibitor that binds to the PDZ1 domain of syntenin inhibits severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection by blocking the endosomal entry of the virus. Furthermore, we found that the inhibitor also hampered chikungunya infection and strongly reduced flavivirus infection, which is completely dependent on receptor-mediated endocytosis for their entry. In conclusion, we have identified a novel broad spectrum antiviral inhibitor that efficiently targets a broad range of RNA viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , RNA Viruses , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Syntenins , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Virus Internalization
16.
PLoS One ; 17(10): e0275988, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2065157

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection results in a wide range of outcomes characterized by a high heterogeneity in both symptomatology and susceptibility to the disease. In such a perspective, COVID-19 may be considered as a multifactorial disease featured by the interaction between the environment, which is the virus itself, and the genetic profile of the host. Our analysis aimed at investigating the transmission dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 within families whose members responded in different ways to the infection, although the exposure was common to the entire group and occurred before the availability of any vaccine. The goal was to understand how the genetic background of each subject can influence the viral infection outcome and hence the above-mentioned clinical variability. We performed a segregation analysis in 19 Italian families with a designed custom panel of 42 genes involved in immunity and virus entry and which have also been shown to be related to SARS-CoV-2 host response. We carried out both a familial segregation analysis and a global statistical analysis. In the former we identified eighteen risk variants co-segregating with a COVID-positive status and six variants with a possible protective effect. In addition, sixteen variants showed a trend of association to a severe phenotype. Together with common SNPs, we detected private rare variants that may also provide insight into the observed clinical COVID-19 heterogeneity. The global statistical analysis confirmed statistically significant positive associations between SARS-CoV-2 individual response and some specific gene variants identified in familial analysis. In conclusion our data confirm that the clinical expression of COVID-19 is markedly influenced by the host genetic profile both with a mendelian transmission pattern and a polygenic architecture.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Virus Diseases , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Virus Internalization
17.
Arch Virol ; 167(10): 1931-1946, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2059867

ABSTRACT

Since 2020, SARS-CoV-2 has caused a pandemic virus that has posed many challenges worldwide. Infection with this virus can result in a number of symptoms, one of which is anosmia. Olfactory dysfunction can be a temporary or long-term viral complication caused by a disorder of the olfactory neuroepithelium. Processes such as inflammation, apoptosis, and neuronal damage are involved in the development of SARS-CoV-2-induced anosmia. One of the receptors that play a key role in the entry of SARS-CoV-2 into the host cell is the transmembrane serine protease TMPRSS2, which facilitates this process by cleaving the viral S protein. The gene encoding TMPRSS2 is located on chromosome 21. It contains 15 exons and has many genetic variations, some of which increase the risk of disease. Delta strains have been shown to be more dependent on TMPRSS2 for cell entry than Omicron strains. Blockade of this receptor by serine protease inhibitors such as camostat and nafamostat can be helpful for treating SARS-CoV-2 symptoms, including anosmia. Proper understanding of the different functional aspects of this serine protease can help to overcome the therapeutic challenges of SARS-CoV-2 symptoms, including anosmia. In this review, we describe the cellular and molecular events involved in anosmia induced by SARS-CoV-2 with a focus on the function of the TMPRSS2 receptor.


Subject(s)
Anosmia , COVID-19 , Serine Endopeptidases , Anosmia/virology , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Proteases , Virus Internalization
18.
mBio ; 13(5): e0254322, 2022 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2053129

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has had a devastating impact on global public health, emphasizing the importance of understanding innate immune mechanisms and cellular restriction factors that cells can harness to fight viral infections. The multimembrane-spanning zinc metalloprotease ZMPSTE24 is one such restriction factor. ZMPSTE24 has a well-characterized proteolytic role in the maturation of prelamin A, precursor of the nuclear scaffold protein lamin A. An apparently unrelated role for ZMPSTE24 in viral defense involves its interaction with the interferon-inducible membrane proteins (IFITMs), which block virus-host cell fusion by rigidifying cellular membranes and thereby prevent viral infection. ZMPSTE24, like the IFITMs, defends cells against a broad spectrum of enveloped viruses. However, its ability to protect against coronaviruses has never been examined. Here, we show that overexpression of ZMPSTE24 reduces the efficiency of cellular infection by SARS-CoV-2 Spike-pseudotyped lentivirus and that genetic knockout or small interfering RNA-mediated knockdown of endogenous ZMPSTE24 enhances infectivity. We further demonstrate a protective role for ZMPSTE24 in a Spike-ACE2-dependent cell-cell fusion assay. In both assays, a catalytic dead version of ZMPSTE24 is equally as protective as the wild-type protein, indicating that ZMPSTE24's proteolytic activity is not required for defense against SARS-CoV-2. Finally, we demonstrate by plaque assays that Zmpste24-/- mouse cells show enhanced infection by a genuine coronavirus, mouse hepatitis virus (MHV). This study extends the range of viral protection afforded by ZMPSTE24 to include coronaviruses and suggests that targeting ZMPSTE24's mechanism of viral defense could have therapeutic benefit. IMPORTANCE The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has underscored the importance of understanding intrinsic cellular components that can be harnessed as the cell's first line of defense to fight against viral infection. Our paper focuses on one such protein, the integral membrane protease ZMPSTE24, which interacts with interferon-inducible transmembrane proteins (IFITMs). IFITMs interfere with virus entry by inhibiting fusion between viral and host cell membranes, and ZMPSTE24 appears to contribute to this inhibitory activity. ZMPSTE24 has been shown to defend cells against several, but not all, enveloped viruses. In this study, we extend ZMPSTE24's reach to include coronaviruses, by showing that ZMPSTE24 protects cells from SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus infection, Spike protein-mediated cell-cell fusion, and infection by the mouse coronavirus MHV. This work lays the groundwork for further studies to decipher the mechanistic role of ZMPSTE24 in blocking the entry of SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses into cells.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Murine hepatitis virus , Humans , Mice , Animals , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Pandemics , Lamin Type A , Membrane Proteins/genetics , Membrane Proteins/metabolism , RNA, Small Interfering , Virus Internalization , Murine hepatitis virus/genetics , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Giant Cells , Metalloproteases , Interferons , Zinc
19.
Food Chem Toxicol ; 169: 113438, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2049210

ABSTRACT

High infection caused by mutations of SARS-CoV-2 calls for new prevention strategy. Ganoderma lucidum known as a superior immunoenhancer exhibits various antiviral effects, whether it can resist SARS-CoV-2 remains unclear. Herein, virtual screening combined with in vitro hACE2 inhibition assays were used to investigate its anti SARS-CoV-2 effect. Potential 54 active components, 80 core targets and 20 crucial pathways were identified by the component-target-pathway network. The binding characters of these components to hACE2 and its complexes with spike protein including omicron variant was analyzed by molecular docking. Lucidenic acid A was selected as the top molecule with high affinity to all receptors by forming hydrogen bonds. Molecular dynamics simulation showed it had good binding stability with the receptor proteins. Finally, in vitro FRET test demonstrated it inhibited the hACE2 activity with IC50 2 µmol/mL. Therefore, lucidenic acid A can prevent the virus invasion by blocking hACE2 binding with SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antiviral Agents , COVID-19 , Cholic Acids , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Virus Internalization , Humans , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Cholic Acids/pharmacology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Molecular Docking Simulation , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Reishi/chemistry
20.
ACS Infect Dis ; 8(10): 2045-2058, 2022 Oct 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2050259

ABSTRACT

The entry of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) into host cells requires binding of the viral spike glycoprotein to the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor, which triggers subsequent conformational changes to facilitate viral and cellular fusion at the plasma membrane or following endocytosis. Here, we experimentally identified selective and broad inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 entry that share a tricyclic ring (or similar) structure. The inhibitory effect was restricted to early steps during infection and the entry inhibitors interacted with the receptor binding domain of the SARS-CoV-2 spike but did not significantly interfere with receptor (ACE2) binding. Instead, some of these compounds induced conformational changes or affected spike assembly and blocked SARS-CoV-2 spike cell-cell fusion activity. The broad inhibitors define a highly conserved binding pocket that is present on the spikes of SARS-CoV-1, SARS-CoV-2, and all circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants tested and block SARS-CoV spike activity required for mediating viral entry. These compounds provide new insights into the SARS-CoV-2 spike topography, as well as into critical steps on the entry pathway, and can serve as lead candidates for the development of broad-range entry inhibitors against SARS-CoVs.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Glycoproteins , Humans , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Virus Internalization
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