Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 36093378
Link to DOI – 10506610.1016/j.isci.2022.105066
iScience 2022 Oct; 25(10): 105066
Patients with severe COVID-19 show an altered immune response that fails to control the viral spread and suffer from exacerbated inflammatory response, which eventually can lead to death. A major challenge is to develop an effective treatment for COVID-19. NF-κB is a major player in innate immunity and inflammatory process. By a high-throughput screening approach, we identified FDA-approved compounds that inhibit the NF-κB pathway and thus dampen inflammation. Among these, we show that Auranofin prevents post-translational modifications of NF-κB effectors and their recruitment into activating complexes in response to SARS-CoV-2 infection or cytokine stimulation. In addition, we demonstrate that Auranofin counteracts several steps of SARS-CoV-2 infection. First, it inhibits a raft-dependent endocytic pathway involved in SARS-CoV-2 entry into host cells; Second, Auranofin alters the ACE2 mobility at the plasma membrane. Overall, Auranofin should prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection and inflammatory damages, offering new opportunities as a repurposable drug candidate to treat COVID-19.