Decoding The Gordian Knots At The Ends Of The SARS-CoV-2 Genome

This is the first in a series describing the role of the beginning and end of the SARS-CoV-2 genome in the virus life cycle. I summarize what we know and point out what we need to know about these ends in order to develop new antiviral drugs.

Unraveling the details of the life cycle of the SARS-CoV-2 virus is much like reading a mystery novel. The truth is often deeply buried and the journey laden with misleading clues. As every reader knows, the first and last pages are inevitably the most important. The analogy is closer than you may imagine. The bookends of the viral genome are responsible for many of the virus’s critical functions, including initiation of replication, protein synthesis, and messenger RNA synthesis. Unraveling the details of exactly how these functions occur requires puzzling out the most intricate mysteries. The first observation is that both the beginning five prime (5’) end and terminal three prime (3’) end are complex.

Read the full article on Forbes.

© William A. Haseltine, PhD. All Rights Reserved.