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A study on the effect of natural products against the transmission of B.1.1.529 Omicron

Alkafaas et al., Virology Journal, doi:10.1186/s12985-023-02160-6
Aug 2023  
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Review of natural products for SARS-CoV-2 omicron including an In Silico study showing quercetin, curcumin, ascorbic acid, nigellidine, and chloroquine among many compounds docked to the ACE2 metallopeptidase domain. Quercetin, curcumin, and ascorbic acid bound ACE2 with energy scores of -16.51, -13.5, and -12.55 kcal/mol. Nigellidine and chloroquine bound with lower affinity (-11.73 and -10.33 kcal/mol). The results suggest these compounds may have potential to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 infection by binding the ACE2 receptor.
Study covers quercetin, curcumin, nigella sativa, vitamin C, and HCQ.
Alkafaas et al., 25 Aug 2023, peer-reviewed, 12 authors. Contact:,,,,
In Silico studies are an important part of preclinical research, however results may be very different in vivo.
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A study on the effect of natural products against the transmission of B.1.1.529 Omicron
Samar Sami Alkafaas, Abanoub Mosaad Abdallah, Aya Misbah Hussien, Heba Bedair, Mahmoud Abdo, Soumya Ghosh, Sara Samy Elkafas, Wilgince Apollon, Morteza Saki, Samah A Loutfy, Helen Onyeaka, Mohamed Hessien
Virology Journal, doi:10.1186/s12985-023-02160-6
Background The recent outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic resulted in a successful vaccination program launched by the World Health Organization. However, a large population is still unvaccinated, leading to the emergence of mutated strains like alpha, beta, delta, and B.1.1.529 (Omicron). Recent reports from the World Health Organization raised concerns about the Omicron variant, which emerged in South Africa during a surge in COVID-19 cases in November 2021. Vaccines are not proven completely effective or safe against Omicron, leading to clinical trials for combating infection by the mutated virus. The absence of suitable pharmaceuticals has led scientists and clinicians to search for alternative and supplementary therapies, including dietary patterns, to reduce the effect of mutated strains. Main body This review analyzed Coronavirus aetiology, epidemiology, and natural products for combating Omicron. Although the literature search did not include keywords related to in silico or computational research, in silico investigations were emphasized in this study. Molecular docking was implemented to compare the interaction between natural products and Chloroquine with the ACE2 receptor protein amino acid residues of Omicron. The global Omicron infection proceeding SARS-CoV-2 vaccination was also elucidated. The docking results suggest that DGCG may bind to the ACE2 receptor three times more effectively than standard chloroquine. Conclusion The emergence of the Omicron variant has highlighted the need for alternative therapies to reduce the impact of mutated strains. The current review suggests that natural products such as DGCG may be effective in binding to the ACE2 receptor and combating the Omicron variant, however, further research is required to validate the results of this study and explore the potential of natural products to mitigate COVID-19. Highlights • There are 32 mutations in the spike of the Omicron variant. • Non-SARS-COV-2 vaccinated individuals accelerate transmission of Omicron variant.
Declarations Ethics approval and consent to participate Not applicable. Consent for publication All the authors read and agreed to publish this article. Competing interests The authors declare that they have no competing interests. Publisher's Note Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
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