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Acetylsalicylic Acid and Salicylic Acid Inhibit SARS-CoV-2 Replication in Precision-Cut Lung Slices

ORCID
0000-0002-2974-6290
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
Geiger, Nina;
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
König, Eva-Maria;
Affiliation
University Hospital Wuerzburg, 97080 Wuerzburg, Germany
Oberwinkler, Heike;
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
Roll, Valeria;
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
Diesendorf, Viktoria;
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
Fähr, Sofie;
Affiliation
Preclinical Pharmacology and In-Vitro Toxicology, Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM, 30625 Hannover, Germany
Obernolte, Helena;
ORCID
0000-0002-7804-4527
Affiliation
Preclinical Pharmacology and In-Vitro Toxicology, Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM, 30625 Hannover, Germany
Sewald, Katherina;
ORCID
0000-0002-2332-226X
Affiliation
Preclinical Pharmacology and In-Vitro Toxicology, Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM, 30625 Hannover, Germany
Wronski, Sabine;
Affiliation
University Hospital Wuerzburg, 97080 Wuerzburg, Germany
Steinke, Maria;
ORCID
0000-0003-1908-4091
Affiliation
Institute for Virology and Immunobiology, Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg, Versbacher Strasse 7, 97078 Wuerzburg, Germany
Bodem, Jochen

Aspirin, with its active compound acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), shows antiviral activity against rhino- and influenza viruses at high concentrations. We sought to investigate whether ASA and its metabolite salicylic acid (SA) inhibit SARS-CoV-2 since it might use similar pathways to influenza viruses. The compound-treated cells were infected with SARS-CoV-2. Viral replication was analysed by RTqPCR. The compounds suppressed SARS-CoV-2 replication in cell culture cells and a patient-near replication system using human precision-cut lung slices by two orders of magnitude. While the compounds did not interfere with viral entry, it led to lower viral RNA expression after 24 h, indicating that post-entry pathways were inhibited by the compounds.

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