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Journal Articles Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy Year : 2020

Novel Class of Chikungunya Virus Small Molecule Inhibitors That Targets the Viral Capping Machinery

Abstract

Despite the worldwide reemergence of the chikungunya virus (CHIKV) and the high morbidity associated with CHIKV infections, there is no approved vaccine or antiviral treatment available. Here, we aimed to identify the target of a novel class of CHIKV inhibitors, i.e., the CHVB series. CHVB compounds inhibit the in vitro replication of CHIKV isolates with 50% effective concentrations in the low-micromolar range. A CHVB-resistant variant (CHVBres) was selected that carried two mutations in the gene encoding nsP1 (responsible for viral RNA capping), one mutation in nsP2, and one mutation in nsP3. Reverse genetics studies demonstrated that both nsP1 mutations were necessary and sufficient to achieve similar to 18-fold resistance, suggesting that CHVB targets viral mRNA capping. Interestingly, CHVBres was cross-resistant to the previously described CHIKV capping inhibitors from the MADTP series, suggesting they share a similar mechanism of action. In enzymatic assays, CHVB inhibited the methyltransferase and guanylyltransferase activities of alphavirus nsP1 proteins. To conclude, we identified a class of CHIKV inhibitors that targets the viral capping machinery. The potent anti-CHIKV activity makes this chemical scaffold a potential candidate for CHIKV drug development.

Domains

Virology

Dates and versions

hal-02890582 , version 1 (06-07-2020)

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Rana Abdelnabi, Kristina Kovacikova, Julia Moesslacher, Kim Donckers, Verena Battisti, et al.. Novel Class of Chikungunya Virus Small Molecule Inhibitors That Targets the Viral Capping Machinery. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 2020, 64 (7), ⟨10.1128/AAC.00649-20⟩. ⟨hal-02890582⟩
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