Ukr.Biochem.J. 2023; Volume 95, Issue 1, Jan-Feb, pp. 90-102


Cathepsin inhibitors as potent inhibitors against SARS-CoV-2 main protease. In silico molecular screening and toxicity prediction

O. Sekiou1*, W. Kherfane2, M. Boumendjel3,
H. Cheniti4, A. Benselhoub1*, S. Bellucci5

1Environmental Research Center, Annaba, Algeria;
2Laboratory of Geodynamics and Natural Resources, Department of Hydraulics,
Badji Mokhtar Annaba University, Annaba, Algeria;
3Laboratory of Biochemistry and Environmental Toxicology,
Badji Mokhtar Annaba University, Algeria;
4National High School of Technology and Engineering (ESTI), Annaba, Algeria;
5INFN Frascati National Laboratories, Rome, Italy;

Received: 05 March 2023; Revised: 28 March 2023;
Accepted: 13 April 2023; Available on-line: 27 April 2023

Since the emergence of the newly identified Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, no targeted therapeutic agents for COVID-19 treatment are available, and effective treatment options remain very limited. Successful crystallization of the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro, PDB-ID 6LU7) made possible the research on finding its potential inhibitors for the prevention of virus replication. To conduct molecular docking, we selected ten representatives of the Cathepsin inhibitors family as possible ligands with a high potential of binding the active site of SARS-CoV-2 main protease as a potential target. The results of molecular docking studies revealed that Ligand1 and Ligand2, with vina scores -8.8 and -8.7 kcal/mol for Mpro, respectively, were the most effective in binding. In silico prediction of physicochemical and toxicological behavior of assessed ligands approved the possibility of their use in clinical essays against SARS-COVID-19.

Keywords: , , , , , ,


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