Molecular docking of SP40 peptide towards cellular receptors for enterovirus 71 (EV-A71)

Masomian, Malihe * and Lalani, S.* and Poh, Chit Laa * (2021) Molecular docking of SP40 peptide towards cellular receptors for enterovirus 71 (EV-A71). Molecules, 26 (21). p. 6576. ISSN 1420-3049

Malihe Masomian Molecular Docking Molecules-26-06576.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (5MB) | Preview
Official URL:


Abstract: Enterovirus 71 (EV-A71) is one of the predominant etiological agents of hand, foot and mouth disease (HMFD), which can cause severe central nervous system infections in young children. There is no clinically approved vaccine or antiviral agent against HFMD. The SP40 peptide, derived from the VP1 capsid of EV-A71, was reported to be a promising antiviral peptide that targeted the host receptor(s) involved in viral attachment or entry. So far, the mechanism of action of SP40 peptide is unknown. In this study, interactions between ten reported cell receptors of EV-A71 and the antiviral SP40 peptide were evaluated through molecular docking simulations, followed by in vitro receptor blocking with specific antibodies. The preferable binding region of each receptor to SP40 was predicted by global docking using HPEPDOCK and the cell receptor-SP40 peptide complexes were refined using FlexPepDock. Local molecular docking using GOLD (Genetic Optimization for Ligand Docking) showed that the SP40 peptide had the highest binding score to nucleolin followed by annexin A2, SCARB2 and human tryptophanyl-tRNA synthetase. The average Gold-Score for 5 top-scoring models of human cyclophilin, fibronectin, human galectin, DC-SIGN and vimentin were almost similar. Analysis of the nucleolin-SP40 peptide complex showed that SP40 peptide binds to the RNA binding domains (RBDs) of nucleolin. Furthermore, receptor blocking by specific monoclonal antibody was performed for seven cell receptors of EV-A71 and the results showed that the blocking of nucleolin by anti-nucleolin alone conferred a 93% reduction in viral infectivity. Maximum viral inhibition (99.5%) occurred when SCARB2 was concurrently blocked with anti-SCARB2 and the SP40 peptide. This is the first report to reveal the mechanism of action of SP40 peptide in silico through molecular docking analysis. This study provides information on the possible binding site of SP40 peptide to EV-A71 cellular receptors. Such information could be useful to further validate the interaction of the SP40 peptide with nucleolin by site-directed mutagenesis of the nucleolin binding site.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: hand, foot and mouth disease; molecular docking; receptor blocking; nucleolin; SCARB2; annexin2; human tryptophanyl-tRNA synthetase
Subjects: Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR355 Virology
Divisions: Sunway University > School of Medical and Life Sciences [formerly School of Healthcare and Medical Sciences until 2020] > Centre for Virus and Vaccine Research [dissolved]
Depositing User: Dr Janaki Sinnasamy
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 06 Dec 2021 02:53
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2021 02:53

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item