Molecular Mask - Prepare for the next pandemic

Infectious Disease/Vaccines

Drug discovery and development platform using peptoids to block viral transmission. Proof of concept for COVID-19 with two novel peptoids that block the interaction of SARS COV 2 and ACE2 receptor in live mammals.

Project Team

Aloe Blacc
Aloe Blacc

Project Status

Clinical Stage
Patent Status
Patent filed

Funding Opportunity

Opportunity type
Funding requested
Funding allocated


Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) remains a global health crisis, despite the development and use of vaccines in certain countries. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, uses its spike protein to bind to the human cell surface receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which allows the virus to enter the human body. Using our unique cell screening technology, we identified two ACE2-binding peptoid compounds and developed dimeric derivatives (ACE2P1D1 and ACE2P2D1) that effectively blocked spike protein-ACE2 interaction, resulting in the inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus entry into human cells. ACE2P1D1 and ACE2P2D1 also blocked infection by a D614G mutant pseudovirus. More importantly, these compounds do not decrease ACE2 expression nor its enzyme activity (which is important in normal blood pressure regulation), suggesting safe applicability in humans.

Project Details

Our in vivo study using the Syrian Golden Hamster showed no toxicity and histological analysis showed significant lung protection.