As we have learned in AP Biology class, the spike protein, or S protein, is located on the surface of SARS-CoV-2 is linked to transmissibility and cell entry. Located on the S protein is the receptor-binding domain (RBD) which is a key factor that allows the virus to dock to body receptors and invade host cells. Effective antibody therapeutics target S proteins.
Due to their small size and ability to penetrate into lung tissue, nanobodies have been speculated to be an excellent source for novel COVID-19 antibody therapeutics. A recent study measured these proposed capabilities for potential usage as a treatment. The proposed therapeutics would be used in veterinary medicine and aim to directly prevent SARS-CoV-2 pseudoviruses from compromising host cells.
The researchers screened and sequenced specific nanobodies, then, they were produced and amplified. The study validated the speculation by observing the carefully selected nanobodies bind to the SARS-CoV-2 S protein and RBD protein simultaneously. 85% of pseudoviruses were observed to be inhibited in a solution with 100mg of nanobody concentration.
What makes nanobodies even more attractive for usage in veterinary medicine is that its inexpensive to produce and can be made in large amounts. Given these beneficial qualities of nanobodies, they seem to be a plausible and favorable COVID-19 treatment.