Single Cell RNA Sequencing Analysis of Human Kidney Reveals the Presence of ACE2 Receptor: A Potential Pathway of COVID-19 Infection
29 Pages Posted: 2 Mar 2020More...
Background: A novel coronavirus called COVID-19, which shared 82% similarity of genome sequence with SARS-CoV, was found in Wuhan in late December of 2019, causing an epidemic outbreak of novel coronavirus-induced pneumonia with dramatically increasing number of cases. Several organs are vulnerable to COVID-19 infection. Acute kidney injury (AKI) was reported in parts of case-studies reporting characteristics of COVID-19 patients. This study aimed at analyzing the potential route of COVID-19 entry and mechanism at cellular level.
Methods: cRNA-seq technology was used to obtain evidence of potential route and ACE2 expressing cell in renal system for underlying pathogenesis of kidney injury caused by COVID-19. The whole process was performed under R with Seurat packages. Canonical marker genes were used to annotate different types of cells.
Results: Ten different clusters were identified and ACE2 was mainly expressed in proximal tubule and glomerular parietal epithelial cells. From GO & KEGG enrichment analysis, imbalance of ACE2 expression, renin-angiotensin system (RAS) activation, and neutrophil-related processes were the main issue of COVID-19 leading kidney injury.
Conclusion: Our study provided the cellular evidence that COVID-19 invaded human kidney tissue via proximal convoluted tubule, proximal tubule, proximal straight tubule cells and glomerular parietal cells by means of ACE2-related pathway and used their cellular protease TMPRSS2 for priming.
Funding Statement: The authors stated: "Not available."
Declaration of Interests: All authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
Keywords: COVID-19, Virus, scRNA-seq, Kidney, ACE2
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