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By Nakarin Suwannarach, Molecules | 14 April 2020

Natural Bioactive Compounds from Fungi as Potential Candidates for Protease Inhibitors and Immunomodulators to Apply for Coronaviruses

Nakarin Suwannarach 1,2,*OrcID,Jaturong Kumla 1,2,Kanaporn Sujarit 1,3OrcID,Thanawat Pattananandecha 4,Chalermpong Saenjum 4OrcID and Saisamorn Lumyong 1,2,5

1Research Center of Microbial Diversity and Sustainable Utilization, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
2Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
3Division of Biology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi, Thanyaburi, Pathumthani 12110, Thailand
4Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
5Academy of Science, The Royal Society of Thailand, Bangkok 10300, Thailand
*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.



The inhibition of viral protease is an important target in antiviral drug discovery and development. To date, protease inhibitor drugs, especially HIV-1 protease inhibitors, have been available for human clinical use in the treatment of coronaviruses. However, these drugs can have adverse side effects and they can become ineffective due to eventual drug resistance. Thus, the search for natural bioactive compounds that were obtained from bio-resources that exert inhibitory capabilities against HIV-1 protease activity is of great interest. Fungi are a source of natural bioactive compounds that offer therapeutic potential in the prevention of viral diseases and for the improvement of human immunomodulation. Here, we made a brief review of the current findings on fungi as producers of protease inhibitors and studies on the relevant candidate fungal bioactive compounds that can offer immunomodulatory activities as potential therapeutic agents of coronaviruses in the future.