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Scientists have developed a new model for predicting cell targets, for drugs, for COVID-19

Author: Aldiyarbek Nurlan 

Translator: Tursunova Balkadisha 

Editor: Akhmetova Aigerim  



Viruses rely on their host to survive, a critical stage in the life cycle is the synthesis of viral particles in the host cell, so understanding this process is key to finding ways to prevent the virus from surviving. 


Using a computer model of human lung cell metabolism, scientists from the University of Warwick's School of natural Sciences determined the stoichiometric requirements for amino acids and nucleic acids of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19. 


Their model identified host-level metabolic disorders that inhibit SARS-CoV-2 reproduction, highlighting reactions in Central metabolism, as well as pathways of amino acid and nucleotide biosynthesis. In fact, the researchers found that only a few of these metabolic disorders are able to selectively inhibit the reproduction of the virus. 


The researchers also noted that some of the enzymes that catalyze such reactions have demonstrated interactions with existing drugs, which can be used to experimentally test the presented predictions using gene knockout techniques and RNA interference techniques. 


"Together, these results highlight the possibility of targeting host metabolism to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 reproduction in human cells in General and in human lung cells in particular. 


He added: "more research is Needed to study cells infected with SARS-CoV-2 and their metabolism, but the model developed here by the researchers can be used as a starting point to test the predictions of specific drugs."