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Sodium Polyoxotungstate Inhibits the Replication of Influenza Virus by Blocking the Nuclear Import of vRNP.

Microorganisms 2024 May 18
Both pandemic and seasonal influenza are major health concerns, causing significant mortality and morbidity. Current influenza drugs primarily target viral neuraminidase and RNA polymerase, which are prone to drug resistance. Polyoxometalates (POMs) are metal cation clusters bridged by oxide anions. They have exhibited potent anti-tumor, antiviral, and antibacterial effects. They have remarkable activity against various DNA and RNA viruses, including human immunodeficiency virus, herpes simplex virus, hepatitis B and C viruses, dengue virus, and influenza virus. In this study, we have identified sodium polyoxotungstate (POM-1) from an ion channel inhibitor library. In vitro, POM-1 has been demonstrated to have potent antiviral activity against H1N1, H3N2, and oseltamivir-resistant H1N1 strains. POM-1 can cause virion aggregation during adsorption, as well as endocytosis. However, the aggregation is reversible; it does not interfere with virus adsorption and endocytosis. Our results suggest that POM-1 exerts its antiviral activity by inhibiting the nuclear import of viral ribonucleoprotein (vRNP). This distinct mechanism of action, combined with its wide range of efficacy, positions POM-1 as a promising therapeutic candidate for influenza treatment and warrants further investigation.

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