Gian Gaetano TartagliaCentre de Regulació Genòmica (CRG)

The main question is which type of host proteins are exploited by the virus to spread.

We produced an atlas of human proteins interacting with SARS-CoV-2. Our results were shared with the community since the very beginning of the pandemic. The most important concept is that there are proteins binding to specific regions (3’ and 5’ ends of RNA genome) that regulate viral replication in a tight way. One of these interactions, if blocked, could be key to stop the infection.

SARS-CoV-2 interactions tend to form blobs (phase separated assemblies in more technical terms) where specific components end up. These interactions help viral replication. Some of them are elements of the cell that are trapped to avoid the self-defence of the cell. How cool is that? Knowing these interactions is important to develop an anti-viral strategy, which would complement the current approach based on vaccination.

Vandelli A, Monti M, Milanetti E, Armaos A, Rupert J, Zacco E, Bechara E, Delli Ponti R, Tartaglia GG 2020. ‘Structural analysis of SARS-CoV-2 genome and predictions of the human interactome‘. Nucleic Acids Res. 48(20):11270-11283.