SARS-CoV-2 virus continues to evolve and mutate causing most of the mutated variants resist to many of the therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). Despite several mAbs retained neutralizing capability for Omicron BA.1 and BA.2, reduction in neutralization potency was reported. Hence, effort of searching for mAb that is broader in neutralization breadth without losing the neutralizing ability is continued. MW06 was reported with capability in neutralizing most of the variants of concern (VOC) and it binds to the conserved region (left flank) near epitope mAb sotrovimab (S309). In this study, binding affinity of mAb MW06 and its cocktail formulation with MW05 for receptor binding domain (RBD) SARS-CoV-2 virus was investigated under molecular dynamics simulations (MDs). Binding free energies computed by Molecular Mechanics Generalised Born Surface Area (MM-GBSA) algorithm predicted the binding affinity of MW06 for RBD BA.1 (−53 kcal/mol) as strong as RBD wildtype (−58 kcal/mol) while deterioration was observed for RBD BA.2 (−43 kcal/mol). Alike S309 and MW06, simulated cocktail mAb (MW05 and MW06)-RBD interactions suggested the neutralizing capability of the cocktail formulation for RBD BA.1 and BA.2 reduced. Meanwhile, residue pairs that favour the communication between the mAb and RBD have been identified by decomposing the free energy per pairwise residue basis. Apart from understanding the effects of mutation occurred in the RBD region on human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2) binding, it pictured how a heavily mutated RBD in impacting the mAb-RBD interactions. In addition to energetic profile obtained from MDs, plotting the dynamics cross-correlation map of the mAb-RBD complex under elastic network model (ENM) to understand the cross-correlations between residue fluctuations. It allows simple and rapid analysis on the motions or dynamics of the protein residues of mAbs and RBD in complex. Protein residues having correlated motions are normally part of the structural domains of the protein and their respective motions and protein function are related. Motion of mutated RBD residues and mAb residues was less correlated while their respective interactions energy computed to be higher. The combined techniques of MDs and ENM offered simplicity in understanding dynamics and energy contribution that explain binding affinity of mAb-RBD complexes.

Fuente: Heliyon
Available online 3 January 2023, e12667