Computer-designed Synthetic Proteins Exhibit Potential in Protecting Lab-Grown Human Cells from SARS-Cov-2

Oct, 2020 - By SMI

Computer-designed Synthetic Proteins Exhibit Potential in Protecting Lab-Grown Human Cells from SARS-Cov-2

According to a new research study by the researchers of the University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine have reported to develop Computer-designed mini proteins that have exhibited potential in preventing SARS-CoV-2 (virus that causes COVID-19) to infect lab-grown human cells by interfering with the mechanism that coronaviruses use to break into and enter cells. In the research study, the lead antiviral candidate, called LCB1, resembled the best-known SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies, which is currently being evaluated in rodents.

It is evident that coronaviruses are specked Spike proteins, which latch onto human cells and allows the virus to enter and infect. Researchers suggested that development of novel drugs that can inhibit the entry mechanism might result in treatment or prevention of infection. In this study, researchers with the help of computer developed new proteins, which gets attached tightly to SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein, thereby hindering its entrance to infect cells.

Longxing Cao, lead author, stated, “Although extensive clinical testing is still needed, we believe the best of these computer-generated antivirals are quite promising. They appear to block SARS-CoV-2 infection at least as well as monoclonal antibodies, but are much easier to produce and far more stable, potentially eliminating the need for refrigeration”.

Moreover, researchers reported to develop antiviral proteins utilizing two approaches, one by utilizing ACE2 receptor, and second one involved designing of entire synthetic proteins from scratch, which exhibited more potential by producing potent antivirals, including LCB1. Researchers concluded that these mini proteins are potential starting points for new SARS-CoV-2 therapeutics.

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