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Science. 2020 Mar 13;367(6483):1260-1263. doi: 10.1126/science.abb2507. Epub 2020 Feb 19.

Cryo-EM structure of the 2019-nCoV spike in the prefusion conformation.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular Biosciences, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA.
2
Vaccine Research Center, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.
3
Department of Molecular Biosciences, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA. jmclellan@austin.utexas.edu.
#
Contributed equally

Abstract

The outbreak of a novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) represents a pandemic threat that has been declared a public health emergency of international concern. The CoV spike (S) glycoprotein is a key target for vaccines, therapeutic antibodies, and diagnostics. To facilitate medical countermeasure development, we determined a 3.5-angstrom-resolution cryo-electron microscopy structure of the 2019-nCoV S trimer in the prefusion conformation. The predominant state of the trimer has one of the three receptor-binding domains (RBDs) rotated up in a receptor-accessible conformation. We also provide biophysical and structural evidence that the 2019-nCoV S protein binds angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) with higher affinity than does severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-CoV S. Additionally, we tested several published SARS-CoV RBD-specific monoclonal antibodies and found that they do not have appreciable binding to 2019-nCoV S, suggesting that antibody cross-reactivity may be limited between the two RBDs. The structure of 2019-nCoV S should enable the rapid development and evaluation of medical countermeasures to address the ongoing public health crisis.

PMID:
32075877
DOI:
10.1126/science.abb2507
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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