Viroporins of Mpox Virus

Kingshuk Basu, Miriam Krugliak, Isaiah T. Arkin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Mpox or monkeypox virus (MPXV) belongs to the subclass of Poxviridae and has emerged recently as a global threat. With a limited number of anti-viral drugs available for this new virus species, it is challenging to thwart the illness it begets. Therefore, characterizing new drug targets in the virus may prove advantageous to curbing the disease. Since channels as a family are excellent drug targets, we have sought to identify viral ion channels for this virus, which are instrumental in formulating channel-blocking anti-viral drugs. Bioinformatics analyses yielded eight transmembranous proteins smaller or equal to 100 amino acids in length. Subsequently, three independent bacteria-based assays have pointed to five of the eight proteins that exhibit ion channel activity. Finally, we propose a tentative structure of four ion channels from their primary amino acid sequences, employing AlphaFold2 and molecular dynamic simulation methods. These results may represent the first steps in characterizing MPXV viroporins en route to developing blockers that inhibit their function.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number13828
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 by the authors.


  • Mpox virus
  • ion channel assay
  • molecular dynamic simulation
  • viral ion channels


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