News Release

Analysis of intermediate hosts and susceptible animals of SARS-CoV-2 by computational methods

Peer-Reviewed Publication

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Announcing a new article publication for Zoonoses journal. In this article the authors Yueying Yang, Mengzhu Zheng, Yang Liu, Yali Wang, Yang Xu, Yirong Zhou, Dejuan Sun, Lixia Chen and Hua Li from tShenyang Pharmaceutical University, Shenyang, China and Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China analyse, with computer modelling, the intermediate hosts of SARS-CoV-2.

The traceability of SARS-CoV- 2 and the discovery of susceptible animal species is crucial to halt viral transmission and explore the mechanism of cross-species transmission. The authors of this article selected 82 representative ACE2 sequences from the 1000 sequences with the closest homology to the hACE2 protein. All selected ACE2 proteins were subjected to homology modeling.

Potential natural and intermediate hosts, as well as animal species susceptible to SARS-CoV-2, were analyzed systematically by calculation of the binding free energy of ACE2 protein to the RBD of SARSCoV- 2. Primates, some wild Felidae, civets, goats, spotted hyenas and golden hamsters are susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 and may be potential intermediate hosts, whereas pangolins, birds and reptiles are unlikely to be intermediate hosts. Mice, rats and guinea pig are not susceptible to SARS-CoV-2. Given their possible susceptibility, non-human primates, goats and golden hamsters could potentially be used as experimental models to examine SARS-CoV-2 infection without transgenesis. The authors suggest possible candidates for the natural and intermediate hosts of SARS-CoV-2 to provide insight for future studies.

Article reference: Yueying Yang, Mengzhu Zheng, Yang Liu, Yali Wang, Yang Xu, Yirong Zhou, Dejuan Sun, Lixia Chen and Hua Li, Analysis of Intermediate Hosts and Susceptible Animals of SARS-CoV-2 by Computational Methods. Zoonoses, 2021,


Keywords: SARS-CoV-2, Intermediate hosts, Susceptible animals, Spike, ACE2

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eISSN 2737-7474

ISSN 2737-7466

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