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A review on the cleavage priming of the spike protein on coronavirus by angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 and furin.

  • Hasan, Anwarul1, 2
  • Paray, Bilal Ahamad3
  • Hussain, Arif4
  • Qadir, Fikry Ali5
  • Attar, Farnoosh6
  • Aziz, Falah Mohammad5
  • Sharifi, Majid7
  • Derakhshankhah, Hossein8
  • Rasti, Behnam9
  • Mehrabi, Masoumeh9
  • Shahpasand, Koorosh10
  • Saboury, Ali Akbar11
  • Falahati, Mojtaba7
  • 1 Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, College of Engineering, Qatar University, Doha, Qatar. , (Qatar)
  • 2 Biomedical Research Center, Qatar University, Doha, Qatar. , (Qatar)
  • 3 Department of Zoology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. , (Saudi Arabia)
  • 4 School of Life Sciences, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. , (United Arab Emirates)
  • 5 Department of Biology, Salahaddin University-Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq. , (Iraq)
  • 6 Faculty of Food Industry and Agriculture, Department of Biology, Standard Research Institute (SRI), Karaj, Iran. , (Iran)
  • 7 Department of Nanotechnology, Faculty of Advanced Science and Technology, Tehran Medical Sciences, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran. , (Iran)
  • 8 Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran. , (Iran)
  • 9 Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Basic Sciences, Lahijan Branch, Islamic Azad University (IAU), Lahijan, Guilan, Iran. , (Iran)
  • 10 Department of Stem Cells and Developmental Biology, Cell Science Research Center, Royan Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Technology (RI-SCBT), Tehran, Iran. , (Iran)
  • 11 Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran. , (Iran)
Published Article
Journal of biomolecular structure & dynamics
Publication Date
May 01, 2021
DOI: 10.1080/07391102.2020.1754293
PMID: 32274964


The widespread antigenic changes lead to the emergence of a new type of coronavirus (CoV) called as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-CoV-2 that is immunologically different from the previous circulating species. Angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE-2) is one of the most important receptors on the cell membrane of the host cells (HCs) which its interaction with spike protein (SP) with a furin-cleavage site results in the SARS-CoV-2 invasion. Hence, in this review, we presented an overview on the interaction of ACE-2 and furin with SP. As several kinds of CoVs, from various genera, have at their S1/S2 binding site a preserved site, we further surveyed the role of furin cleavage site (FCS) on the life cycle of the CoV. Furthermore, we discussed that the small molecular inhibitors can limit the interaction of ACE-2 and furin with SP and can be used as potential therapeutic platforms to combat the spreading CoV epidemic. Finally, some ongoing challenges and future prospects for the development of potential drugs to promote targeting specific activities of the CoV were reviewed. In conclusion, this review may pave the way for providing useful information about different compounds involved in improving the effectiveness of CoV vaccine or drugs with minimum toxicity against human health.Communicated by Ramaswamy H. Sarma.

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