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    Largemouth bass virus (LMBV) is a systemic viral pathogen that can cause high mortality rates in cultivated largemouth bass. However, no treatment is currently approved. Therapeutic strategies against LMBV infection are urgently needed. In this study, we investigated the antiviral activity of piperine against LMBV in vitro and in vivo. In vitro antiviral activity assay showed that 210.28 μM piperine significantly decreased LMBV major capsid protein (MCP) gene expression in epithelioma papulosum cyprinid (EPC) cells by a maximum inhibitory rate of >95%. Piperine treatment inhibited LMBV replication in a dose-dependent manner, with the half-maximal activity (IC50 ) of 34.61 μM. Moreover, piperine significantly decreased the viral titers and cytopathic effects (CPE), contributing to the protection of infected cells. With regard to the steps of piperine affecting the life cycle of viruses, piperine had a direct inactivating effect on LMBV. During the virus adsorption phase, piperine prevented the adsorption of LMBV to EPC cells. Furthermore, piperine played an antiviral role mainly in the later stages of viral infection (4-8 h). To further evaluate the antiviral activity of piperine against LMBV in vivo, largemouth bass as a model organism was carried out in relevant experiments. Intraperitoneal injection of piperine (25 mg/kg) effectively improved the survival rate of LMBV-infected largemouth bass by 20%. In addition, RT-qPCR results of viral replication in liver, spleen, kidney, gill and swim bladder tissues showed that piperine significantly inhibited LMBV replication in vivo, thus protecting largemouth bass from LMBV-induced death. Together, our results suggested that piperine is a therapeutic and preventative agent against LMBV infection. © 2022 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


    Mengmeng Wang, Bin Yang, Zongyi Ren, Jietao Liu, Chenwang Lu, Haifeng Jiang, Fei Ling, Gaoxue Wang, Tianqiang Liu. Inhibition of the largemouth bass virus replication by piperine demonstrates potential application in aquaculture. Journal of fish diseases. 2023 Mar;46(3):261-271

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    PMID: 36504104

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