Friman T, Chernobrovkin A, Martinez Molina D, Arnold L
SLAS Discov - (-) 2472555220973597 [2020-11-18; online 2020-11-18]
The reuse of preexisting small molecules for a novel emerging disease threat is a rapid measure to discover unknown applications for previously validated therapies. A pertinent and recent example where such a strategy could be employed is in the fight against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Therapies designed or discovered to target viral proteins also have off-target effects on the host proteome when employed in a complex physiological environment. This study aims to assess these host cell targets for a panel of FDA-approved antiviral compounds including remdesivir, using the cellular thermal shift assay (CETSA) coupled with mass spectrometry (CETSA MS) in noninfected cells. CETSA MS is a powerful method to delineate direct and indirect interactions between small molecules and protein targets in intact cells. Biologically active compounds can induce changes in thermal stability, in their primary binding partners, and in proteins that in turn interact with the direct targets. Such engagement of host targets by antiviral drugs may contribute to the clinical effect against the virus but can also constitute a liability. We present here a comparative study of CETSA molecular target engagement fingerprints of antiviral drugs to better understand the link between off-targets and efficacy.