The spike glycoprotein of the new coronavirus 2019-nCoV contains a furin-like cleavage site absent in CoV of the same clade

Antiviral Res. 2020 Apr;176:104742. doi: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2020.104742. Epub 2020 Feb 10.

Abstract

In 2019, a new coronavirus (2019-nCoV) infecting Humans has emerged in Wuhan, China. Its genome has been sequenced and the genomic information promptly released. Despite a high similarity with the genome sequence of SARS-CoV and SARS-like CoVs, we identified a peculiar furin-like cleavage site in the Spike protein of the 2019-nCoV, lacking in the other SARS-like CoVs. In this article, we discuss the possible functional consequences of this cleavage site in the viral cycle, pathogenicity and its potential implication in the development of antivirals.

Keywords: 2019-nCoV; Antivirals; Furin; Maturation protease; SARS-CoV; Spike protein.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Betacoronavirus / chemistry*
  • Furin / chemistry*
  • Genome, Viral
  • Protein Conformation
  • Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus / chemistry*

Substances

  • Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
  • spike protein, SARS-CoV-2
  • Furin

Supplementary concepts

  • severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2