α-lipoic acid for COVID-19
α-lipoic acid has been reported as potentially beneficial for treatment of COVID-19. We have not reviewed these studies. See all other treatments.
SARS-CoV-2 Main Protease Targets Host Selenoproteins and Glutathione Biosynthesis for Knockdown via Proteolysis, Potentially Disrupting the Thioredoxin and Glutaredoxin Redox Cycles, Antioxidants, doi:10.3390/antiox12030559 ,
Associations between dietary selenium status and the clinical outcome of many viral infections, including SARS-CoV-2, are well established. Multiple independent studies have documented a significant inverse correlation between selenium status and the incidence and mortality of COVID-19. At the molecular level, SARS-CoV-2 infection has been shown to decrease the expression of certain selenoproteins, both in vitro and in COVID-19 patients. Using computational methods, our group previously identified a set of six host proteins that contain potential SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro) cleavage sites. Here we show experimentally that Mpro can cleave four of the six predicted target sites, including those from three selenoproteins: thioredoxin reductase 1 (TXNRD1), selenoprotein F, and selenoprotein P, as well as the rate-limiting enzyme in glutathione synthesis, glutamate-cysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC). Cleavage was assessed by incubating recombinant SARS-CoV-2 Mpro with synthetic peptides spanning the proposed cleavage sites, and analyzing the products via UPLC-MS. Furthermore, upon incubation of a recombinant Sec498Ser mutant of the full TXNRD1 protein with SARS-CoV-2 Mpro, the predicted cleavage was observed, destroying the TXNRD1 C-terminal redox center. Mechanistically, proteolytic knockdown of both TXNRD1 and GCLC is consistent with a viral strategy to inhibit DNA synthesis, conserving the pool of ribonucleotides for increased virion production. Viral infectivity could also be enhanced by GCLC knockdown, given the ability of glutathione to disrupt the structure of the viral spike protein via disulfide bond reduction. These findings shed new light on the importance of dietary factors like selenium and glutathione in COVID-19 prevention and treatment.
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