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In silico prediction of inhibitory potential of a punicalagin β-anomer against SARS-COV-2 main protease (MPRO)

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posted on 2023-01-24, 07:26 authored by Norberto Monteiro, Vitória Monteiro, Lorena Lima, Anna Karolline, Richele Machado

The pandemic caused by the new coronavirus has resulted in a global health emergency and has prompted an urgent need for new treatment strategies. No target-specific drugs are currently available for SARS-CoV-2, but new drug candidates targeting the viral replication cycle are being explored. A prime target of drug-discovery efforts is the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro). In this work, we identified a potential inhibitor for SARS-CoV-2 main protease using in silico methodologies. Molecular docking and molecular dynamics studies were carried out to ascertain the inhibitory action of α and β anomers of Punicalagin from fruit peel of Punica granatum against the Mpro protease. The molecular dynamics results revealed that the β-anomeric configuration of punicalagin allowed access to more hydrogen bonds and hydrophobic interaction leading to higher selectivity and specificity of β-anomer than α-anomer. Therefore, the β-anomer of Punicalagin could act as potential inhibitor against the main protease of SARS-CoV-2 and may act as a potential drug candidate.