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Current Protein & Peptide Science


ISSN (Print): 1389-2037
ISSN (Online): 1875-5550

Review Article

Carbohydrate-Binding Agents: Potential of Repurposing for COVID-19 Therapy

Author(s): Rajesh Kumar Gupta*, Girish R. Apte, Kiran Bharat Lokhande, Satyendra Mishra and Jayanta K. Pal

Volume 21 , Issue 11 , 2020

Page: [1085 - 1096] Pages: 12

DOI: 10.2174/1389203721666200918153717

Price: $65


With the emergence of the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the whole world is suffering from atypical pneumonia, which resulted in more than 559,047 deaths worldwide. In this time of crisis and urgency, the only hope comes from new candidate vaccines and potential antivirals. However, formulating new vaccines and synthesizing new antivirals are a laborious task. Therefore, considering the high infection rate and mortality due to COVID-19, utilization of previous information, and repurposing of existing drugs against valid viral targets have emerged as a novel drug discovery approach in this challenging time. The transmembrane spike (S) glycoprotein of coronaviruses (CoVs), which facilitates the virus’s entry into the host cells, exists in a homotrimeric form and is covered with N-linked glycans. S glycoprotein is known as the main target of antibodies having neutralizing potency and is also considered as an attractive target for therapeutic or vaccine development. Similarly, targeting of N-linked glycans of S glycoprotein envelope of CoV via carbohydrate-binding agents (CBAs) could serve as an attractive therapeutic approach for developing novel antivirals. CBAs from natural sources like lectins from plants, marine algae and prokaryotes and lectin mimics like Pradimicin-A (PRM-A) have shown antiviral activities against CoV and other enveloped viruses. However, the potential use of CBAs specifically lectins was limited due to unfavorable responses like immunogenicity, mitogenicity, hemagglutination, inflammatory activity, cellular toxicity, etc. Here, we reviewed the current scenario of CBAs as antivirals against CoVs, presented strategies to improve the efficacy of CBAs against CoVs; and studied the molecular interactions between CBAs (lectins and PRM-A) with Man9 by molecular docking for potential repurposing against CoVs in general, and SARSCoV- 2, in particular.

Keywords: Lectin, COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, carbohydrate binding agents, pradimicin-A, CBAS.

Graphical Abstract
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