Structural Basis of Remdesivir Inhibiting SARS-2 Transcription

illustration of chemical structures

The outbreak of COVID-19 has caused a global pandemic resulting in a remarkable number of infections and deaths worldwide. Remdesivir has been clinically proven to be an effective antiviral drug against COVID-19 infection. However, the lack of the structures of the key complex of RNA polymerase with Remdesivir has hindered the understanding of the detailed transcription and inhibition mechanisms and identification of more effective antiviral drugs.

Led by Bin Liu, PhD, assistant professor, the Hormel Institute, this study will provide a structural basis for understanding the mechanisms of how COVID-19 virus transcription is inhibited by Remdesivir, and therefore pave the way for discovering more effective antiviral drugs.

“The information gained from our proposed study will greatly advance the understanding of COVID-19 virus replication/transcription machinery, and facilitate the development of novel antiviral drugs and novel therapeutic strategies for SARS-2 infection,” said Liu.

This project is supported by the UMN Campus Public Health Officer's CO:VID (Collaborative Outcomes: Visionary Innovation & Discovery) grants program, which support University of Minnesota faculty to catalyze and energize small-scale research projects designed to address and mitigate the COVID-19 virus and its associated risks.