An in Silico Scientific Basis for LL-37 as a Therapeutic and Vitamin D as Preventive for Covid-19.
A multi-pronged approach with help in all forms possible is essential to completely overcome the Covid-19 pandemic. There is a requirement to research as many new and different types of approaches as possible to cater to the entire world population, complementing the vaccines with promising results. The need is also because SARS-CoV-2 has several unknown or variable facets which get revealed from time to time. In this report, in silico scientific findings are presented, which are indicative of the potential for the use of the LL-37 human anti-microbial peptide as a therapeutic against SARS-CoV-2. This indication is based on the high structural similarity of LL-37 to the N-terminal helix, with which the virus interacts, of the receptor for SARS-CoV-2, Angiotensin Converting Enzyme 2. Moreover, there is positive prediction of binding of LL-37 to the receptor-binding domain of SARS-CoV-2. As Vitamin D is known to upregulate the expression of LL-37, the vitamin is a candidate preventive molecule. This report provides the possible basis for why there is an inverse correlation between Vitamin D levels in the body and the severity of or susceptibility to Covid-19. The path for development of LL-37 as a therapeutic could be of lesser duration, as LL-37 is native to the human body. With the scientific link put forth herein, Vitamin D could be used at an effective, medically prescribed, safe dose as a preventive. The information in this report would be valuable in bolstering the worldwide efforts to control the pandemic as early as possible.