Abstract: “SARS-CoV-2 infects host cells by interacting its spike protein with surface angiotensinconverting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptors, expressed in lung and other cell types. Although several risk factors could explain why some countries have lower incidence and fatality rates than others, environmental factors such as diet should be considered. It has been described that countries with high polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) intake have a lower number of COVID-19 victims and a higher rate of recovery from the disease. Moreover, it was found that linoleic acid, an omega-6 PUFA, could stabilize the spike protein in a closed conformation, blocking its interaction with ACE2. These facts prompted us to perform in silico simulations to determine if other PUFA could also stabilize the closed conformation of spike protein and potentially lead to a reduction in SARS-CoV-2 infection. We found that: (a) countries whose source of omega-3 is from marine origin have lower fatality rates; and (b) like linoleic acid, omega-3 PUFA could also bind to the closed conformation of spike protein and therefore, could help reduce COVID-19 complications by reducing viral entrance to cells, in addition to their known anti-inflammatory effects.”

Below is a further extract from the article:

“Hence, we conclude that omega-6, and notably omega-3 PUFA, could be allosteric inhibitors of S-protein and serve as a template for the design of new drugs based on this molecular mechanism.[…] Although several factors must be considered in the explanation of the variability in the number of cases and fatality rates across regions and countries, based on the results of the epidemiological analysis and the in silico simulations present in this work, we conclude that the intake of omega-3 PUFA from marine origin has had a positive impact for the countries that incorporate them in their diet.[…] Consequently, there is a need to carry out clinical studies that demonstrate that omega-3 PUFA supplementation could aid and act synergistically with other treatments to promote patient recovery.”

Alonso Vivar-Sierra et al., Molecules 202126(3), 711

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