The newly emerged 2019 novel coronavirus (CoV), named as severe acute respiratory syndrome CoV-2 (SARS-CoV-2), like SARS-CoV (now, SARS-CoV-1) and Middle East respiratory syndrome CoV (MERS-CoV), has been associated with high infection rates with over 36,405 deaths. In the absence of approved marketed drugs against coronaviruses, the treatment and management of this novel CoV disease (COVID-19) worldwide is a challenge. Drug repurposing that has emerged as an effective drug discovery approach from earlier approved drugs could reduce the time and cost compared to de novo drug discovery. Direct virus-targeted antiviral agents target specific nucleic acid or proteins of the virus while host-based antivirals target either the host innate immune responses or the cellular machineries that are crucial for viral infection. Both the approaches necessarily interfere with viral pathogenesis. Here we summarize the present status of both virus-based and host-based drug repurposing perspectives for coronaviruses in general and the SARS-CoV-2 in particular.
This review presented the information with respect to repurposing of FDA-approved drugs as well as those under clinical trials for SARS-CoV-1 and MERS-CoVs, wherein a lot of effort had gone in during the last decade or more. This knowledge has in fact, formed the basis for efforts towards drug repurposing for the SARS-CoV-2 as well. As highlighted in this review, phase III clinical trials of a few drugs have been initiated, though most of these are notably targeting the virus directly, essentially the RdRp or the chymotrypsin-like protease 3CLpro. The spike glycoprotein also needs be explored as a target for the SARS-CoV-2 as the S1 domain of this virus deviates from the other human CoVs. It is thus important that the spike protein should be considered as a potential SARS-CoV-2 therapeutic target. On the other hand, considering that the strategy of targeting viral proteins is vulnerable to the emergence of viral resistance, other coronavirus targets such as the papain-like protease, helicaseetc., also need to be attempted for drug repurposing. Further, several more of the potential SARS and/or MERS host-based inhibitors should be assessed against SARS-CoV-2. The ongoing vigorous efforts would help develop broad-spectrum anti-CoV agents against SARS-CoV-2.
Reference & source information : http://www.ijmr.org.in/
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