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Molecules ; 26(16)2021 Aug 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34443484


The COVID-19 outbreak has rapidly spread on a global scale, affecting the economy and public health systems throughout the world. In recent years, peptide-based therapeutics have been widely studied and developed to treat infectious diseases, including viral infections. Herein, the antiviral effects of the lysine linked dimer des-Cys11, Lys12,Lys13-(pBthTX-I)2K ((pBthTX-I)2K)) and derivatives against SARS-CoV-2 are reported. The lead peptide (pBthTX-I)2K and derivatives showed attractive inhibitory activities against SARS-CoV-2 (EC50 = 28-65 µM) and mostly low cytotoxic effect (CC50 > 100 µM). To shed light on the mechanism of action underlying the peptides' antiviral activity, the Main Protease (Mpro) and Papain-Like protease (PLpro) inhibitory activities of the peptides were assessed. The synthetic peptides showed PLpro inhibition potencies (IC50s = 1.0-3.5 µM) and binding affinities (Kd = 0.9-7 µM) at the low micromolar range but poor inhibitory activity against Mpro (IC50 > 10 µM). The modeled binding mode of a representative peptide of the series indicated that the compound blocked the entry of the PLpro substrate toward the protease catalytic cleft. Our findings indicated that non-toxic dimeric peptides derived from the Bothropstoxin-I have attractive cellular and enzymatic inhibitory activities, thereby suggesting that they are promising prototypes for the discovery and development of new drugs against SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Venenos de Crotalídeos/química , Dimerização , Papaína/antagonistas & inibidores , Peptídeos/química , Peptídeos/farmacologia , SARS-CoV-2/enzimologia , Antivirais/química , Antivirais/metabolismo , Antivirais/farmacologia , Simulação de Acoplamento Molecular , Papaína/química , Papaína/metabolismo , Peptídeos/metabolismo , Inibidores de Proteases/química , Inibidores de Proteases/metabolismo , Inibidores de Proteases/farmacologia , Conformação Proteica , SARS-CoV-2/efeitos dos fármacos
Viruses ; 12(6)2020 05 30.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32486283


Single-stranded positive RNA ((+) ssRNA) viruses include several important human pathogens. Some members are responsible for large outbreaks, such as Zika virus, West Nile virus, SARS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2, while others are endemic, causing an enormous global health burden. Since vaccines or specific treatments are not available for most viral infections, the discovery of direct-acting antivirals (DAA) is an urgent need. Still, the low-throughput nature of and biosafety concerns related to traditional antiviral assays hinders the discovery of new inhibitors. With the advances of reverse genetics, reporter replicon systems have become an alternative tool for the screening of DAAs. Herein, we review decades of the use of (+) ssRNA viruses replicon systems for the discovery of antiviral agents. We summarize different strategies used to develop those systems, as well as highlight some of the most promising inhibitors identified by the method. Despite the genetic alterations introduced, reporter replicons have been shown to be reliable systems for screening and identification of viral replication inhibitors and, therefore, an important tool for the discovery of new DAAs.

Antivirais/farmacologia , Descoberta de Drogas/métodos , Genes Reporter/fisiologia , Vírus de RNA/efeitos dos fármacos , Replicon/fisiologia , Animais , Antivirais/química , Linhagem Celular , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cricetinae , Humanos , Vírus de RNA/genética , Transfecção , Células Vero
FEBS J ; 286(17): 3340-3358, 2019 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31044497


The Golgi complex is part of the endomembrane system and is responsible for receiving transport cargos from the endoplasmic reticulum and for sorting and targeting them to their final destination. To perform its function in higher eukaryotic cells, the Golgi needs to be correctly assembled as a flattened membrane sandwich kept together by a protein matrix. The precise mechanism controlling the Golgi cisternae assembly is not yet known, but it is widely accepted that the Golgi Reassembly and Stacking Protein (GRASP) is a main component of the Golgi protein matrix. Unlike mammalian cells, which have two GRASP genes, lower eukaryotes present only one gene and distinct Golgi cisternae assembly. In this study, we performed a set of biophysical studies to get insights on the structural properties of the GRASP domains (DGRASPs) from both human GRASP55 and GRASP65 and compare them with GRASP domains from lower eukaryotes (Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Cryptococcus neoformans). Our data suggest that both human DGRASPs are essentially different from each other and that DGRASP65 is more similar to the subgroup of DGRASPs from lower eukaryotes in terms of its biophysical properties. GRASP55 is present mainly in the Golgi medial and trans faces, which are absent in both fungi, while GRASP65 is located in the cis-Golgi. We suggest that the GRASP65 gene is more ancient and that its paralogue GRASP55 might have appeared later in evolution, together with the medial and trans Golgi faces in mammalians.

Proteínas Fúngicas/química , Proteínas da Matriz do Complexo de Golgi/química , Homologia Estrutural de Proteína , Cryptococcus neoformans , Evolução Molecular , Proteínas Fúngicas/genética , Proteínas da Matriz do Complexo de Golgi/genética , Proteínas da Matriz do Complexo de Golgi/metabolismo , Saccharomyces cerevisiae
ACS Omega ; 2(7): 3913-3920, 2017 Jul 31.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30023708


B-cell epitope sequences from Zika virus (ZIKV) NS1 protein have been identified using epitope prediction tools. Mapping these sequences onto the NS1 surface reveals two major conformational epitopes and a single linear one. Despite an overall average sequence identity of ca. 55% between the NS1 from ZIKV and the four dengue virus (DENV) serotypes, epitope sequences were found to be highly conserved. Nevertheless, nonconserved epitope-flanking residues are responsible for a dramatically divergent electrostatic surface potential on the epitope regions of ZIKV and DENV2 serotypes. These findings suggest that strategies for differential diagnostics on the basis of short linear NS1 sequences are likely to fail due to immunological cross-reactions. Overall, results provide the molecular basis of differential discrimination between Zika and DENVs by NS1 monoclonal antibodies.