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Asunaprevir for COVID-19

Asunaprevir has been reported as potentially beneficial for treatment of COVID-19. We have not reviewed these studies. See all other treatments.
Calleja et al., Inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 PLpro, Frontiers in Chemistry, doi:10.3389/fchem.2022.876212
The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 causing the COVID-19 pandemic, has highlighted how a combination of urgency, collaboration and building on existing research can enable rapid vaccine development to fight disease outbreaks. However, even countries with high vaccination rates still see surges in case numbers and high numbers of hospitalized patients. The development of antiviral treatments hence remains a top priority in preventing hospitalization and death of COVID-19 patients, and eventually bringing an end to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. The SARS-CoV-2 proteome contains several essential enzymatic activities embedded within its non-structural proteins (nsps). We here focus on nsp3, that harbours an essential papain-like protease (PLpro) domain responsible for cleaving the viral polyprotein as part of viral processing. Moreover, nsp3/PLpro also cleaves ubiquitin and ISG15 modifications within the host cell, derailing innate immune responses. Small molecule inhibition of the PLpro protease domain significantly reduces viral loads in SARS-CoV-2 infection models, suggesting that PLpro is an excellent drug target for next generation antivirals. In this review we discuss the conserved structure and function of PLpro and the ongoing efforts to design small molecule PLpro inhibitors that exploit this knowledge. We first discuss the many drug repurposing attempts, concluding that it is unlikely that PLpro-targeting drugs already exist. We next discuss the wealth of structural information on SARS-CoV-2 PLpro inhibition, for which there are now ∼30 distinct crystal structures with small molecule inhibitors bound in a surprising number of distinct crystallographic settings. We focus on optimisation of an existing compound class, based on SARS-CoV PLpro inhibitor GRL-0617, and recapitulate how new GRL-0617 derivatives exploit different features of PLpro, to overcome some compound liabilities.
Lou et al., Potential Target Discovery and Drug Repurposing for Coronaviruses: Study Involving a Knowledge Graph–Based Approach, Journal of Medical Internet Research, doi:10.2196/45225
Background The global pandemics of severe acute respiratory syndrome, Middle East respiratory syndrome, and COVID-19 have caused unprecedented crises for public health. Coronaviruses are constantly evolving, and it is unknown which new coronavirus will emerge and when the next coronavirus will sweep across the world. Knowledge graphs are expected to help discover the pathogenicity and transmission mechanism of viruses. Objective The aim of this study was to discover potential targets and candidate drugs to repurpose for coronaviruses through a knowledge graph–based approach. Methods We propose a computational and evidence-based knowledge discovery approach to identify potential targets and candidate drugs for coronaviruses from biomedical literature and well-known knowledge bases. To organize the semantic triples extracted automatically from biomedical literature, a semantic conversion model was designed. The literature knowledge was associated and integrated with existing drug and gene knowledge through semantic mapping, and the coronavirus knowledge graph (CovKG) was constructed. We adopted both the knowledge graph embedding model and the semantic reasoning mechanism to discover unrecorded mechanisms of drug action as well as potential targets and drug candidates. Furthermore, we have provided evidence-based support with a scoring and backtracking mechanism. Results The constructed CovKG contains 17,369,620 triples, of which 641,195 were extracted from biomedical literature, covering 13,065 concept unique identifiers, 209 semantic types, and 97 semantic relations of the Unified Medical Language System. Through multi-source knowledge integration, 475 drugs and 262 targets were mapped to existing knowledge, and 41 new drug mechanisms of action were found by semantic reasoning, which were not recorded in the existing knowledge base. Among the knowledge graph embedding models, TransR outperformed others (mean reciprocal rank=0.2510, Hits@10=0.3505). A total of 33 potential targets and 18 drug candidates were identified for coronaviruses. Among them, 7 novel drugs (ie, quinine, nelfinavir, ivermectin, asunaprevir, tylophorine, Artemisia annua extract, and resveratrol) and 3 highly ranked targets (ie, angiotensin converting enzyme 2, transmembrane serine protease 2, and M protein) were further discussed. Conclusions We showed the effectiveness of a knowledge graph–based approach in potential target discovery and drug repurposing for coronaviruses. Our approach can be extended to other viruses or diseases for biomedical knowledge discovery and relevant applications.
Please send us corrections, updates, or comments. c19early involves the extraction of 100,000+ datapoints from thousands of papers. Community updates help ensure high accuracy. Vaccines and treatments are complementary. All practical, effective, and safe means should be used based on risk/benefit analysis. No treatment, vaccine, or intervention is 100% available and effective for all current and future variants. We do not provide medical advice. Before taking any medication, consult a qualified physician who can provide personalized advice and details of risks and benefits based on your medical history and situation. FLCCC and WCH provide treatment protocols.
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