Study pinpoints new drug targets to treat Nipah virus

December 12, 2019

Nipah virus, which is transmitted to humans from bats and pigs, has a high mortality rate and there are no licensed drugs against it. Now, researchers have used information on the structure of the Nipah virus to identified 150 possible inhibitors of the virus. The results are published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases.

Nipah virus infections have killed 72-86% of infected individuals in Bangladesh and India. Although the disease was first identified in 1998, there are no approved drugs or vaccines against it. Though the overall number of fatalities linked with each individual outbreak has never been more than 105, the disease poses a deadly threat and could become pandemic.

In the new work, M.S. Madhusudhan and collagues at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Pune first made three-dimension models of the 9 Nipah virus proteins. Then, they used these models design inhibitory molecules to block the proteins' activity. Finally, the team assessed how effective the proposed inhibitors would be against 15 different strains of the virus-- 3 Bangladeshi, 7 Malaysian and 5 Indian strains.

The researchers computationally identified 4 putative peptides inhibitors and 146 small molecule inhibitors against Nipah virus proteins. 13 of their proposed inhibitors were short-listed as the most promising based on their binding strength, stability, and effectiveness against multiple strains of Nipah virus.

"We conclude that it is highly likely that the proposed inhibitors would be potent against all strains of the virus Nipah and other related zoonotic viruses that pose a serious epidemic threat," the researchers say. "Computational approaches can help identify and design inhibitors that could be rapidly tested or even deployed."
In your coverage please use this URL to provide access to the freely available paper: 0007419

Funding: MS Madhusudhan would like to acknowledge the Wellcome Trust-DBT India alliance for a senior fellowship. Neeladri Sen and Sanjana Nair would like to acknowledge CSIR-SPMF for funding. Kaustubh Amritkar would like to acknowledge INSIPRE-SHE fellowship. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.


Related Proteins Articles from Brightsurf:

New understanding of how proteins operate
A ground-breaking discovery by Centenary Institute scientists has provided new understanding as to the nature of proteins and how they exist and operate in the human body.

Finding a handle to bag the right proteins
A method that lights up tags attached to selected proteins can help to purify the proteins from a mixed protein pool.

Designing vaccines from artificial proteins
EPFL scientists have developed a new computational approach to create artificial proteins, which showed promising results in vivo as functional vaccines.

New method to monitor Alzheimer's proteins
IBS-CINAP research team has reported a new method to identify the aggregation state of amyloid beta (Aβ) proteins in solution.

Composing new proteins with artificial intelligence
Scientists have long studied how to improve proteins or design new ones.

Hero proteins are here to save other proteins
Researchers at the University of Tokyo have discovered a new group of proteins, remarkable for their unusual shape and abilities to protect against protein clumps associated with neurodegenerative diseases in lab experiments.

Designer proteins
David Baker, Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Washington to speak at the AAAS 2020 session, 'Synthetic Biology: Digital Design of Living Systems.' Prof.

Gone fishin' -- for proteins
Casting lines into human cells to snag proteins, a team of Montreal researchers has solved a 20-year-old mystery of cell biology.

Coupled proteins
Researchers from Heidelberg University and Sendai University in Japan used new biotechnological methods to study how human cells react to and further process external signals.

Understanding the power of honey through its proteins
Honey is a culinary staple that can be found in kitchens around the world.

Read More: Proteins News and Proteins Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to