Molecule of the Month: SARS-CoV-2 RNA-dependent RNA Polymerase
Coronaviruses duplicate their RNA genome using a specialized polymerase
Under the Microscope
Exploring the Structure
RNA-dependent RNA Polymerase
Remdesivir is a modified adenine-like nucleotide that is converted to an active triphosphate form and then added to the product RNA strand, blocking the function of the polymerase. This structure (PDB entry 7bv2) captures the drug (green) after it has been attached to the product strand. Two magnesium ions (magenta) assist with the normal polymerase reaction, and the structure also found a pyrophosphate nearby (dark purple). To explore this structure in more detail, click on the image for an interactive JSmol.
Topics for Further Discussion
- Try searching for "RNA-dependent RNA polymerase" at the main RCSB site to see similar enzymes from other viruses.
- Be sure to take a look at the cryoEM maps for these structures at the EMDataBank--there is a link to them at the top of each Structure Summary page.
September 2020, David Goodselldoi:10.2210/rcsb_pdb/mom_2020_9