The Suramin Derivative NF449 Interacts with the 5-fold Vertex of the Enterovirus A71 Capsid to Prevent Virus Attachment to PSGL-1 and Heparan Sulfate

Yorihiro Nishimura, Noel P. McLaughlin, Jieyan Pan, Sara Goldstein, Susan Hafenstein, Hiroyuki Shimizu, Jeffrey D. Winkler, Jeffrey M. Bergelson

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NF449, a sulfated compound derived from the antiparasitic drug suramin, was previously reported to inhibit infection by enterovirus A71 (EV-A71). In the current work, we found that NF449 inhibits virus attachment to target cells, and specifically blocks virus interaction with two identified receptors—the P-selectin ligand, PSGL-1, and heparan sulfate glycosaminoglycan—with no effect on virus binding to a third receptor, the scavenger receptor SCARB2. We also examined a number of commercially available suramin analogues, and newly synthesized derivatives of NF449; among these, NF110 and NM16, like NF449, inhibited virus attachment at submicromolar concentrations. PSGL-1 and heparan sulfate, but not SCARB2, are both sulfated molecules, and their interaction with EV-A71 is thought to involve positively charged capsid residues, including a conserved lysine at VP1-244, near the icosahedral 5-fold vertex. We found that mutation of VP1-244 resulted in resistance to NF449, suggesting that this residue is involved in NF449 interaction with the virus capsid. Consistent with this idea, NF449 and NF110 prevented virus interaction with monoclonal antibody MA28-7, which specifically recognizes an epitope overlapping VP1-244 at the 5-fold vertex. Based on these observations we propose that NF449 and related compounds compete with sulfated receptor molecules for a binding site at the 5-fold vertex of the EV-A71 capsid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere1005184
JournalPLoS pathogens
Issue number10
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Virology

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