heavy metal viral inhibition?

Tim Fitzmaurice tjf11 at cus.cam.ac.uk
Wed Apr 24 06:12:32 EST 1996

On Tue, 23 Apr 1996, Tim Fitzmaurice wrote:
> On 14 Apr 1996, MIKE wrote:
> > Does anyone know if virii are inhibited by any heavy metal and what the 
> > chemical mechanism is? I have speculated that if this were to happen the 
> > heavy metal probably binds non-competitively to some early viral enzyme 
> > needed for host cell attachment or penetration.Any info would be greatly 
> > appreciated.
> I saw a citation for zinc compounds inhibiting the herpesviruses amongst 
> others....the journal was called Heavy Metal Drugs...so I assume there 
> are a variety.
Ooooops cock-up.....it was Metal-based Drugs.....anyway here is the 
citation I was talking about...

(1)   TI: Complexes of zinc with picolinic and aspartic acids inactivate 
          free varicella-zoster virions
      AU: Shishkov_S, Varadinova_T, Bontchev_P, Nachev_C, Michailova_E
      JN: Metal-Based Drugs, 1996, Vol.3, No.1, pp.11-14
      AB: Zn(II) picolinate and aspartate, Zn(pic)2 and Zn(asp)2, have 
          been shown to inhibit key steps of the replication of HSV-1. In
          the present study we describe the effect of Zn(pic)2 and 
          Zn(asp)2 on the replication of VZV and on the infectivity of 
          free virions. The experiments are done using BHK-21 cells, a 
          clinical isolate of VZV and Zn-complexes in concentration of 10
          muM. When Zn-complexes are present during the whole period of 
          infection, the yield of infectious virus progeny decreases up 
          to 98%. The infectivity of VZV is completely restored after the
          removal of zinc. The virucidal effect is manifested at the 2nd 
          h of contact, when 90% of the virions are inactivated. The 
          results show that both Zn(pic)2 and Zn(asp)2 specifically 
          inactivate free VZV virions with no effect on viral 

I've only got the abstract, not read the paper in detail...


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