Shanet Susan Alex via News-Medical – A recent study published in the journal Computers in Biology and Medicine demonstrated that the phytochemical curcumin is a potent therapeutic prospect against the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron variant.
The ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused over 508 million SARS-CoV-2 cases and six million deaths to date globally. As of now, the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant is the dominant strain worldwide. Omicron was designated a variant of concern (VOC) since it can evade vaccine- and infection-induced immunity due to several mutations in its spike (S) protein, including 15 amino acid substitutions across the receptor-binding domain (RBD).
Recent studies indicate that many of the most widely used COVID-19 vaccinations offer little or no immunity against Omicron infection. To date, no specific therapeutic regimen for this VOC has been recommended. As a result, Omicron might jeopardize worldwide attempts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic by posing a public health risk.
About the Study
The present paper aimed to profile seven phytochemicals (capsaicin, gingerol, allicin, curcumin, piperine, zingeberene, and cinnamaldehyde) and discover possible therapeutic options against the Omicron variant. The researchers built a three-dimensional layout of Omicron S RBD by integrating 15 amino acid alterations to the Native S structure. The team contrasted the structural changes of the Omicron S with the Native S. The authors docked the seven phytochemicals with the Omicron S-human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2) complex and the Omicron S protein…
The study findings illustrated that curcumin harbored the most significant inhibitory capability with Omicron S protein out of the seven phytochemicals tested. The authors also found that curcumin could disturb the Omicron S-hACE2 aggregate. Further, the MD simulation showed that curcumin might establish a stable complex with Omicron S in the physiological milieu.
To summarize, the present data depicted that curcumin has the potential to be used as a medicinal agent against the highly infectious SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant.
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