Repurposing Fragile X Drugs to Inhibit SARS-CoV-2 Viral Reproduction

Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 Aug 26;8:856. doi: 10.3389/fcell.2020.00856. eCollection 2020.


The COVID-19 pandemic is a global health crisis that requires the application of interdisciplinary research to address numerous knowledge gaps including molecular strategies to prevent viral reproduction in affected individuals. In response to the Frontiers Research Topic, "Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Pathophysiology, Epidemiology, Clinical Management, and Public Health Response," this Hypothesis article proposes a novel therapeutic strategy to repurpose metabotropic glutamate 5 receptor (mGluR5) inhibitors to interfere with viral hijacking of the host protein synthesis machinery. We review pertinent background on SARS-CoV-2, fragile X syndrome (FXS) and metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) and provide a mechanistic-based hypothesis and preliminary data to support testing mGluR5 inhibitors in COVID-19 research.

Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus; fragile X mental retardation protein; metabotropic glutamate receptor 5; protein synthesis.