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Has Ivermectin Virus-Directed Effects against SARS-CoV-2? Rationalizing the Action of a Potential Multitarget Antiviral Agent

Francés-Monerris et al., ChemRxiv, doi:10.26434/chemrxiv.12782258.v1
Oct 2020  
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Ivermectin for COVID-19
4th treatment shown to reduce risk in August 2020
*, now known with p < 0.00000000001 from 102 studies, recognized in 22 countries.
No treatment is 100% effective. Protocols combine complementary and synergistic treatments. * >10% efficacy in meta analysis with ≥3 clinical studies.
4,000+ studies for 60+ treatments.
In silico study showing that ivermectin is capable of interfering in different key steps of the SARS-CoV-2 replication cycle.
Ivermectin, better known for antiparasitic activity, is a broad spectrum antiviral with activity against many viruses including H7N7 Götz, Dengue Jitobaom, Tay, Wagstaff, HIV-1 Wagstaff, Simian virus 40 Wagstaff (B), Zika Barrows, Jitobaom, Yang, West Nile Yang, Yellow Fever Mastrangelo, Varghese, Japanese encephalitis Mastrangelo, Chikungunya Varghese, Semliki Forest virus Varghese, Human papillomavirus Li, Epstein-Barr Li, BK Polyomavirus Bennett, and Sindbis virus Varghese.
Ivermectin inhibits importin-α/β-dependent nuclear import of viral proteins Götz, Kosyna, Wagstaff, Wagstaff (B), inhibits SARS-CoV-2 3CLpro Mody, shows spike-ACE2 disruption at 1nM with microfluidic diffusional sizing Fauquet, binds to glycan sites on the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein preventing interaction with blood and epithelial cells and inhibiting hemagglutination Boschi, Scheim, exhibits dose-dependent inhibition of lung injury Abd-Elmawla, Ma, may inhibit SARS-CoV-2 via IMPase inhibition Jitobaom, may inhibit SARS-CoV-2 induced formation of fibrin clots resistant to degradation Vottero, may inhibit SARS-CoV-2 RdRp activity Parvez (B), may be beneficial for COVID-19 ARDS by blocking GSDMD and NET formation Liu (C), shows protection against inflammation, cytokine storm, and mortality in an LPS mouse model sharing key pathological features of severe COVID-19 DiNicolantonio, Zhang, may be beneficial in severe COVID-19 by binding IGF1 to inhibit the promotion of inflammation, fibrosis, and cell proliferation that leads to lung damage Zhao, may minimize SARS-CoV-2 induced cardiac damage Liu, Liu (B), increases Bifidobacteria which play a key role in the immune system Hazan, has immunomodulatory Munson and anti-inflammatory DiNicolantonio (B), Yan properties, and has an extensive and very positive safety profile Descotes.
Francés-Monerris et al., 8 Oct 2020, preprint, 8 authors.
In Silico studies are an important part of preclinical research, however results may be very different in vivo.
This PaperIvermectinAll
Has Ivermectin Virus-Directed Effects against SARS-CoV-2? Rationalizing the Action of a Potential Multitarget Antiviral Agent
Antonio Francés-Monerris, Cristina García-Iriepa, Isabel Iriepa, Cécilia Hognon, Tom Miclot, Giampaolo Barone, Antonio Monari, Marco Marazzi
The novel SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus is causing a devastating pandemic in 2020, threatening public health in many countries. An unprecedented rapid and global response has been set in motion to identify efficient antiviral agents against SARS-CoV-2, mostly relying on the repurposing of drugs presenting or not previously known antiviral activity. Ivermectin is an approved drug used as antiparasitic in humans and animals with well documented broad-spectrum antiviral properties that emerge from host-directed effects. Recent results reported by Wagstaff and coworkers (Antiviral Research 2020, 178, 104787) show a potent inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 replication in vitro by ivermectin, and clinical trials with human volunteers have already started. However, the mode of action of ivermectin is still largely unknown, especially at the molecular level. Here, we employ advanced molecular dynamics simulations to assess the influence of ivermectin on several key viral protein targets, with the aim to reveal the molecular bases of antiviral mechanisms against SARS-CoV-2. Interestingly, we show that ivermectin could be regarded as a multitarget agent, inhibiting different viral functions. These include blocking the recognition by the SARS-CoV-2 Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of the Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2), the interactions with the two viral proteases 3CL pro and PL pro , and the SARS Unique Domain (SUD) non-structural protein. Hence, the wide spectrum of actions involving i) the interference with cell infection, ii) the inhibition of viral replication, and iii) elusion of the host immune system, could point to an unprecedented synergy between host-and virus-directed effects explaining the high anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity observed for this compound. Entry for the Table of Contents Molecular dynamics reveal the interaction hotspots between the antiparasitic drug ivermectin and several SARS-CoV-2 structures. These findings suggest a novel dual mechanism of action for this drug, in which both host-directed and virus-directe effects act synergistically to stop SARS-CoV-2 infection.
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