Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo)TiHo eLib

Cationic geminoid peptide amphiphiles inhibit DENV2 protease, furin, and viral replication

Dengue is an important arboviral infectious disease for which there is currently no specific cure. We report gemini-like (geminoid) alkylated amphiphilic peptides containing lysines in combination with glycines or alanines (C15H31C(O)-Lys-(Gly or Ala)nLys-NHC16H33, shorthand notation C16-KXnK-C16 with X = A or G, and n = 0-2). The representatives with 1 or 2 Ala inhibit dengue protease and human furin, two serine proteases involved in dengue virus infection that have peptides with cationic amino acids as their preferred substrates, with IC50 values in the lower µM range. The geminoid C16-KAK-C16 combined inhibition of DENV2 protease (IC50 2.3 µM) with efficacy against replication of wildtype DENV2 in LLC-MK2 cells (EC50 4.1 µM) and an absence of toxicity. We conclude that the lysine-based geminoids have activity against dengue virus infection, which is based on their inhibition of the proteases involved in viral replication and are therefore promising leads to further developing antiviral therapeutics, not limited to dengue.


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