Protective role of combined polyphenols and micronutrients against influenza a virus and SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro

Marta De Angelis, David Della-Morte, Gabriele Buttinelli, Angela Di Martino, Francesca Pacifici, Paola Checconi, Luigina Ambrosio, Paola Stefanelli, Anna Teresa Palamara, Enrico Garaci, Camillo Ricordi, Lucia Nencioni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Polyphenols have been widely studied for their antiviral effect against respiratory virus infections. Among these, resveratrol (RV) has been demonstrated to inhibit influenza virus replication and more recently, it has been tested together with pterostilbene against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. In the present work, we evaluated the antiviral activity of polydatin, an RV precursor, and a mixture of polyphenols and other micronutrients, named A5+, against influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 infections. To this end, we infected Vero E6 cells and analyzed the replication of both respiratory viruses in terms of viral proteins synthesis and viral titration. We demonstrated that A5+ showed a higher efficacy in inhibiting both influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 infections compared to polydatin treatment alone. Indeed, post infection treatment significantly decreased viral proteins expression and viral release, probably by interfering with any step of virus replicative cycle. Intriguingly, A5+ treatment strongly reduced IL-6 cytokine production in influenza virus-infected cells, suggesting its potential anti-inflammatory properties during the infection. Overall, these results demonstrate the synergic and innovative antiviral efficacy of A5+ mixture, although further studies are needed to clarify the mechanisms underlying its inhibitory effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1721
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Antivirals
  • COVID-19
  • Influenza virus
  • Micronutrients
  • Polydatin
  • Polyphenols
  • SARS-CoV-2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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