Receptor-binding domain as a target for developing SARS vaccines
JOURNAL OF THORACIC DISEASE
Authors: Zhu, Xiaojie; Liu, Qi; Du, Lanying; Lu, Lu; Jiang, Shibo
A decade ago, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus (SARS-CoV) caused a global pandemic with a mortality rate of 10%. Reports of recent outbreaks of a SARS-like disease caused by Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) have raised serious concerns of a possible reemergence of SARS-CoV, either by laboratory escape or the presence of a natural reservoir. Therefore, the development of effective and safe SARS vaccines is still needed. Based on our previous studies, we believe that the receptor-binding domain (RBD) in the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV spike (S) protein is the most important target for developing a SARS vaccine. In particular, RBD of S protein contains the critical neutralizing domain (CND), which is able to induce highly potent neutralizing antibody response and cross-protection against divergent SARS-CoV strains. Furthermore, a RBD-based subunit vaccine is expected to be safer than other vaccines that may induce Th2-type immunopathology. This review will discuss key advances in the development of RBD-based SARS vaccines and the possibility of using a similar strategy to develop vaccines against MERS-CoV.
Combining a Fusion Inhibitory Peptide Targeting the MERS-CoV S2 Protein HR1 Domain and a Neutralizing Antibody Specific for the S1 Protein Receptor-Binding Domain (RBD) Showed Potent Synergism against Pseudotyped MERS-CoV with or without Mutations in RBD
Authors: Wang, Cong; Hua, Chen; Xia, Shuai; Li, Weihua; Lu, Lu; Jiang, Shibo
Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) has continuously posed a threat to public health worldwide, yet no therapeutics or vaccines are currently available to prevent or treat MERS-CoV infection. We previously identified a fusion inhibitory peptide (HR2P-M2) targeting the MERS-CoV S2 protein HR1 domain and a highly potent neutralizing monoclonal antibody (m336) specific to the S1 spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD). However, m336 was found to have reduced efficacy against MERS-CoV strains with mutations in RBD, and HR2P-M2 showed low potency, thus limiting the clinical application of each when administered separately. However, we herein report that the combination of m336 and HR2P-M2 exhibited potent synergism in inhibiting MERS-CoV S protein-mediated cell-cell fusion and infection by MERS-CoV pseudoviruses with or without mutations in the RBD, resulting in the enhancement of antiviral activity in contrast to either one administered alone. Thus, this combinatorial strategy could be used in clinics for the urgent treatment of MERS-CoV-infected patients.