Lineage B.1.617+, also known as G/452R.V3 and now denoted by WHO with the Greek letters δ and κ, is a recently described SARS-CoV-2 variant under investigation (VUI) firstly identified in October 2020 in India. As of May 2021, three sublineages labelled as B.1.617.1 (κ), B.1.617.2 ((δ) and B.1.617.3 have been already identified, and their potential impact on the current pandemic is being studied. This variant has 13 amino acid changes, three in its spike protein, which are currently of particular concern: E484Q, L452R and P681R. Here we report a major effect of the mutations characterizing this lineage, represented by a marked alteration of the surface electrostatic potential (EP) of the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of the spike protein. Enhanced RBD-EP is particularly noticeable in the B.1.617.2 ((δ)) sublineage, which shows multiple replacements of neutral or negatively-charged amino acids with positively-charged amino acids. We here hypothesize that this EP change can favor the interaction between the B.1.617+ RBD and the negatively charged ACE2 thus conferring a potential increase in the virus transmission. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617 Indian variants: are electrostatic potential changes responsible for a higher transmission rate? / Pascarella, Stefano; Ciccozzi, Massimo; Zella, Davide; Bianchi, Martina; Benetti, Francesca; Benvenuto, Domenico; Broccolo, Francesco; Cauda, Roberto; Caruso, Arnaldo; Angeletti, Silvia; Giovanetti, Marta; Cassone, Antonio. - In: JOURNAL OF MEDICAL VIROLOGY. - ISSN 0146-6615. - (2021). [10.1002/jmv.27210]

SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617 Indian variants: are electrostatic potential changes responsible for a higher transmission rate?

Pascarella, Stefano;Bianchi, Martina;
2021

Abstract

Lineage B.1.617+, also known as G/452R.V3 and now denoted by WHO with the Greek letters δ and κ, is a recently described SARS-CoV-2 variant under investigation (VUI) firstly identified in October 2020 in India. As of May 2021, three sublineages labelled as B.1.617.1 (κ), B.1.617.2 ((δ) and B.1.617.3 have been already identified, and their potential impact on the current pandemic is being studied. This variant has 13 amino acid changes, three in its spike protein, which are currently of particular concern: E484Q, L452R and P681R. Here we report a major effect of the mutations characterizing this lineage, represented by a marked alteration of the surface electrostatic potential (EP) of the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of the spike protein. Enhanced RBD-EP is particularly noticeable in the B.1.617.2 ((δ)) sublineage, which shows multiple replacements of neutral or negatively-charged amino acids with positively-charged amino acids. We here hypothesize that this EP change can favor the interaction between the B.1.617+ RBD and the negatively charged ACE2 thus conferring a potential increase in the virus transmission. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1562347
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