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Iota-Carrageenan Inhibits Replication of SARS-CoV-2 and the Respective Variants of Concern Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta

Fröba et al., International Journal of Molecular Sciences, doi:10.3390/ijms222413202
Dec 2021  
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In Vitro study of iota-, lambda-, and kappa-carrageenan sulfated polysaccharides extracted from red seaweed on SARS-CoV-2 Wuhan type and variants Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta, showing that all three carrageenan types had antiviral activity. Iota-carrageenan had comparable IC50 values against all variants. Authors conclude that iota-carrageenan might be effective for prophylaxis and treatment of SARS-CoV-2 for existing and potentially future variants.
15 preclinical studies support the efficacy of iota-carrageenan for COVID-19:
Fröba et al., 8 Dec 2021, peer-reviewed, 14 authors.
In Vitro studies are an important part of preclinical research, however results may be very different in vivo.
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Iota-Carrageenan Inhibits Replication of SARS-CoV-2 and the Respective Variants of Concern Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta
Maria Fröba, Maximilian Große, Christian Setz, Pia Rauch, Janina Auth, Lucas Spanaus, Jan Münch, Natalia Ruetalo, Michael Schindler, Martina Morokutti-Kurz, Philipp Graf, Eva Prieschl-Grassauer, Andreas Grassauer, Ulrich Schubert
International Journal of Molecular Sciences, doi:10.3390/ijms222413202
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread around the world and remains a major public health threat. Vaccine inefficiency, vaccination breakthroughs and lack of supply, especially in developing countries, as well as the fact that a non-negligible part of the population either refuse vaccination or cannot be vaccinated due to age, pre-existing illness or non-response to existing vaccines intensify this issue. This might also contribute to the emergence of new variants, being more efficiently transmitted, more virulent and more capable of escaping naturally acquired and vaccine-induced immunity. Hence, the need of effective and viable prevention options to reduce viral transmission is of outmost importance. In this study, we investigated the antiviral effect of iota-, lambda-and kappa-carrageenan, sulfated polysaccharides extracted from red seaweed, on SARS-CoV-2 Wuhan type and the spreading variants of concern (VOCs) Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta. Carrageenans as part of broadly used nasal and mouth sprays as well as lozenges have the potential of first line defense to inhibit the infection and transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Here, we demonstrate by using a SARS-CoV-2 spike pseudotyped lentivirus particles (SSPL) system and patient-isolated SARS-CoV-2 VOCs to infect transgenic A549ACE2/TMPRSS2 and Calu-3 human lung cells that all three carrageenan types exert antiviral activity. Iota-carrageenan exhibits antiviral activity with comparable IC 50 values against the SARS-CoV-2 Wuhan type and the VOCs. Altogether, these results indicate that iota-carrageenan might be effective for prophylaxis and treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infections independent of the present and potentially future variants.
Supplementary Materials: The following are available online at 10.3390/ijms222413202/s1. Author Contributions: Conceptualization, M.F., M.G., C.S., A.G. and U.S.; methodology, M.F., M.G., C.S., P.R., J.A., L.S., J.M., N.R., M.S., M.M.-K., P.G., E.P.-G. and U.S.; validation, M.F., M.G., C.S., M.S., M.M.-K., E.P.-G., A.G. and U.S.; investigation, M.F., M.G., C.S., M.S., P.R., J.A., L.S., J.M., N.R. and M.M.-K., P.G.; data curation, U.S.; writing-original draft preparation, M.F., M.G., C.S, J.M., M.M.-K. and U.S.; writing-review and editing, M.F., M.G., C.S., P.R., J.A., L.S., J.M., N.R., M.S., M. Conflicts of Interest: The authors have read the journal's policy and declare that the authors Andreas Grassauer, Eva Prieschl-Grassauer, Philipp Graf, and Martina Morokutti-Kurz are employed by Marinomed Biotech AG. Andreas Grassauer and Eva Prieschl-Grassauer are co-founders of Marinomed Biotech AG. Andreas Grassauer, Eva Prieschl-Grassauer and Martina Morokutti-Kurz are inventors of a patent submission related to the content of the manuscript; the number of this patent application is EP20186334. The funders had no role in the design of the study; in the collection, analyses, or interpretation of data; in the writing of the manuscript, or in the decision to publish the results.
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