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CORRECTED: German Group Explores SARS Coronavirus Proteinase Structure

This article has been corrected from a previous version, which contained scientific errors.


NEW YORK, May 13 - A group of German scientists has predicted the structure of a proteinases that controls replication in the SARS coronavirus based on homology modeling to existing coronavirus proteinases and has determined that drugs binding to active sites in these proteinases are likely to act on similar binding site in the SARS coronavirus proteinases, according to an article published online in Science today.


The group includes researchers from the University of L beck Institute of Biochemistry, the University of W rzburg Institute of Virology and Immunology, and the University of Jena Institute of Molecular Biology.


In the paper, they report on this viral proteinase, M(pro) or 3CL(pro), as an "active target for therapy." The researchers crystallized the structure of a similar proteinase M(pro) in human coronavirus 229-E, as well as that of an inhibitor complex of porcine coronavirus M(pro). Based on these structures, they constructed a homology model for M(pro) in the SARS coronavirus. This work led them to conclude that the substrate-binding sites in the SARS coronavirus are similar to those in these better-characterized coronaviruses, and that existing agents designed to work on the binding sites of other coronavirues are likely, with modification, to work on the SARS coronavirus M(pro) proteinase binding site.


This latest work comes just after an analysis of different SARS coronavirus' sequences was published in the Lancet. Scientists have remarked as to the rapid progress of genomic-based research on this syndrome.


GenomeWeb Coverage of SARS


Genome Institute of Singapore Collaborates with Hemispherix on RNA-based SARS Therapeutic (May 13, 2003)

Study Analyzes How SARS Virus Changed As It Spread Across the Globe (May 9, 2003)

InforSense Donates KDE Software to Shanghai for SARS Research (May 8, 2003)

CombiMatrix Develops siRNA to Target SARS Virus (May 7, 2003)


Focus Tech Claims First RT-PCR SARS Diagnostic (May 5, 2003)

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Roche to Launch RT-PCR-based SARS Diagnostic by July (April 28, 2003)

///issues/news//121956-1.html" Line...(April 25, 2003)

NCID said to Launch PCR Test for SARS Next Week ( ///issues/news//121956-1.html""Arial, Helvetica">CombiMatrix's Ali Arjomand on Developing a SARS Microarray (BioArray News, April 25, 2003)

///issues/news//121956-1.html"">University of Manitoba Proteomics Researchers Tackle SARS Virus Proteins (ProteoMonitor, April 21, 2003)
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Singapore Genome Institute Joins SARS Sequencing Fray (April 16, 2003)

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CDC Completes SARS Virus Genome Draft On Heels of Canadian Team  (April 14, 2003)


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