These targets were selected because finding compounds that dock with them could result in drugs for treating different diseases, including chronic kidney disease, prostate cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes, thrombosis and bacterial infections.
One idea researchers are considering is that drugs that work against protein targets of some other virus, such as the flu, hepatitis or Ebola, will automatically work against Covid-19, even when the SARS-CoV-2 protein targets don’t have the same shape.
Now they consist of thousands of processors performing massively parallel processing in which many calculations, such as testing the potential of drugs to dock with a pathogen or cell’s proteins, are performed at the same time.
Supercomputers allow researchers to take a rational approach and aim to selectively muzzle proteins that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, needs for its life cycle.
Also, we and others are venturing out into the wild world of new drug discovery for Covid-19—looking for compounds that have never been tried as drugs before.