Targeting SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) methyltransferases (nsp14 and nsp10-nsp16 complex) toward developing small molecule antiviral therapeutics - Part 2
COVID-19 pandemic has brought the world to standstill with more than 55 million people infected to-date and more than 1.34 million mortality so far. It has literally brought the health care systems in many countries to the breaking point, if not beyond. The economic consequences have been devastating with millions of people out of work. We are taking a novel approach by focusing on two SARS-CoV2 (COVID-19) methyltransferases that are essential for viral replication. Both enzymes (nsp14 and nsp16) are druggable. Therefore, identifying potent inhibitor of these two proteins could be used in providing new therapeutics for COVID-19. In addition, because these proteins are highly similar in other coronaviruses such as SARS (SARS-Cov) and MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), and many other coronaviruses currently infecting animals, the same drugs likely could be effective in treatment of other current coronavirus infections, and those possibly infecting humans in future.