Neuropeptides, New Ligands of SARS-CoV-2 Nucleoprotein, a Potential Link between Replication, Inflammation and Neurotransmission - Sorbonne Université Access content directly
Journal Articles Molecules Year : 2022

Neuropeptides, New Ligands of SARS-CoV-2 Nucleoprotein, a Potential Link between Replication, Inflammation and Neurotransmission

Abstract

This work identifies new ligands of the nucleoprotein N of SARS-CoV-2 by in silico screening, which used a new model of N, built from an Alphafold model refined by molecular dynamic simulations. The ligands were neuropeptides, such as substance P (1-7) and enkephalin, bound at a large site of the C-terminal or associated with the N-terminal β−sheet. The BA4 and BA5 Omicron variants of N also exhibited a large site as in wt N, and an increased flexibility of the BA5 variant, enabling substance P binding. The binding sites of some ligands deduced from modeling in wt N were assessed by mutation studies in surface plasmon resonance experiments. Dynamic light scattering showed that the ligands impeded RNA binding to N, which likely inhibited replication. We suggest that the physiological role of these neuropeptides in neurotransmission, pain and vasodilation for cholecystokinin and substance P could be altered by binding to N. We speculate that N may link between viral replication and multiple pathways leading to long COVID-19 symptoms. Therefore, N may constitute a “danger hub” that needs to be inhibited, even at high cost for the host. Antivirals targeted to N may therefore reduce the risk of brain fog and stroke, and improve patients’ health.

Dates and versions

hal-03890945 , version 1 (08-12-2022)

Identifiers

Cite

Julien Henri, Laetitia Minder, Kevin Mohanasundaram, Sébastien Dilly, Anne Goupil-Lamy, et al.. Neuropeptides, New Ligands of SARS-CoV-2 Nucleoprotein, a Potential Link between Replication, Inflammation and Neurotransmission. Molecules, 2022, 27 (22), pp.8094. ⟨10.3390/molecules27228094⟩. ⟨hal-03890945⟩
36 View
0 Download

Altmetric

Share

Gmail Mastodon Facebook X LinkedIn More