A nanomaterial targeting the spike protein captures SARS-CoV-2 variants and promotes viral elimination

Guofang Zhang, Yalin Cong, Feng Liang Liu, Jiufeng Sun, Jiantian Zhang, Guoli Cao, Lingqiang Zhou, Wenjie Yang, Qingle Song, Fangjun Wang, Ke Liu, Jing Qu, Jing Wang, Min He, Shun Feng, Didar Baimanov, Wei Xu, Rong Hua Luo, Xin Yan Long, Shumin LiaoYunping Fan, Yu Feng Li, Bai Li, Ximing Shao, Guocheng Wang, Lijing Fang, Huaiyu Wang, Xue Feng Yu, Yan Zhong Chang, Yuliang Zhao, Liang Li, Peng Yu, Yong Tang Zheng, Diana Boraschi, Hongchang Li, Chunying Chen, Liming Wang, Yang Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The global emergency caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic can only be solved with effective and widespread preventive and therapeutic strategies, and both are still insufficient. Here, we describe an ultrathin two-dimensional CuInP2S6 (CIPS) nanosheet as a new agent against SARS-CoV-2 infection. CIPS exhibits an extremely high and selective binding capacity (dissociation constant (KD) < 1 pM) for the receptor binding domain of the spike protein of wild-type SARS-CoV-2 and its variants of concern, including Delta and Omicron, inhibiting virus entry and infection in angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2)-bearing cells, human airway epithelial organoids and human ACE2-transgenic mice. On association with CIPS, the virus is quickly phagocytosed and eliminated by macrophages, suggesting that CIPS could be successfully used to capture and facilitate virus elimination by the host. Thus, we propose CIPS as a promising nanodrug for future safe and effective anti-SARS-CoV-2 therapy, and as a decontamination agent and surface-coating material to reduce SARS-CoV-2 infectivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)993-1003
Number of pages11
JournalNature Nanotechnology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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