Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Ultra-Large-Scale Screening of Natural Compound...


Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

Ultra-Large-Scale Screening of Natural Compounds and Free Energy Calculations Revealed Potential Inhibitors for the Receptor-Binding Domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

  • Lisha Guo
  • Faryar Zafar
  • Nawal Moeen
  • Fahad M. Alshabrmi
  • Junqi Lin
  • Syed Shujait Ali
  • Muhammad Munir
  • Abbas Khan
  • Dongqing Wei
  • John Zhang (Editor)
Article number7317
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>28/10/2022
Issue number21
Number of pages16
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The emergence of immune-evading variants of SARS-CoV-2 further aggravated the ongoing pandemic. Despite the deployments of various vaccines, the acquired mutations are capable of escaping both natural and vaccine-induced immune responses. Therefore, further investigation is needed to design a decisive pharmacological treatment that could efficiently block the entry of this virus into cells. Hence, the current study used structure-based methods to target the RBD of the recombinant variant (Deltacron) of SARS-CoV-2, which was used as a model variant. From the virtual drug screenings of various databases, a total of four hits were identified as potential lead molecules. Key residues were blocked by these molecules with favorable structural dynamic features. The binding free energies further validated the potentials of these molecules. The TBE for MNP was calculated to be −32.86 ± 0.10 kcal/mol, for SANC00222 the TBE was −23.41 ± 0.15 kcal/mol, for Liriodenine the TBE was −34.29 ± 0.07 kcal/mol, while for Carviolin the TBE was calculated to be −27.67 ± 0.12 kcal/mol. Moreover, each complex demonstrated distinct internal motion and a free energy profile, indicating a different strategy for the interaction with and inhibition of the RBD. In conclusion, the current study demands further in vivo and in vitro validation for the possible usage of these compounds as potential drugs against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants.