Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and accessory proteases (TMPRSS2 and CTSL) are needed for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) cellular entry, and their expression may shed light on viral tropism and impact across the body. We assessed the cell-type-specific expression of ACE2, TMPRSS2 and CTSL across 107 single-cell RNA-sequencing studies from different tissues. ACE2, TMPRSS2 and CTSL are coexpressed in specific subsets of respiratory epithelial cells in the nasal passages, airways and alveoli, and in cells from other organs associated with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) transmission or pathology. We performed a meta-analysis of 31 lung single-cell RNA-sequencing studies with 1,320,896 cells from 377 nasal, airway and lung parenchyma samples from 228 individuals. This revealed cell-type-specific associations of age, sex and smoking with expression levels of ACE2, TMPRSS2 and CTSL. Expression of entry factors increased with age and in males, including in airway secretory cells and alveolar type 2 cells. Expression programs shared by ACE2+TMPRSS2+ cells in nasal, lung and gut tissues included genes that may mediate viral entry, key immune functions and epithelial-macrophage cross-talk, such as genes involved in the interleukin-6, interleukin-1, tumor necrosis factor and complement pathways. Cell-type-specific expression patterns may contribute to the pathogenesis of COVID-19, and our work highlights putative molecular pathways for therapeutic intervention.
FörderungenGerman Center for Lung Research and Helmholtz Association BHF/DZHK grant UK Regenerative Medicine Platform Rutherford Fund Fellowship Netherlands Lung Foundation MRC Erling-Persson Family Foundation (HDCA) Horizon2020 Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research Erling-Persson Family Foundation (Human Developmental Cell Atlas) Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation BHF CZI RFA CZF2019-002431e for Research Excellence Swedish Cancer Society Swedish Research Council NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre ATS Foundation/Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals Research Fellowship in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis Parker B. Francis Fellowship Manton Foundation Klarman Cell Observatory Cancer Research UK Heart and Stroke Foundation Canadian Institute of Health Research Canada Research Chair Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation Centre for Regenerative Medicine, Imperial College London Janssen Pharmaceuticals Stand Up to Cancer is a division of the Entertainment Industry Foundation Stand Up to Cancer-LUNGevity-American Lung Association Lung Cancer Interception Dream Team Translational Cancer Reserach Grant Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) Seed Network Stanford Child Health Research Institute (Woods Family Faculty Scholarship) European Commission (ESPACE/HEuropean Union) European Research Council (ERC) Medical Research Council (MRC) Department of Defense National Research Foundation of Korea ERC Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Wall Center for Pulmonary Vascular Disease Howard Hughes Medical Institute Three Lakes Foundation Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany in the framework of CaRNAtion British Heart Foundation (BHF)/German Centre for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) grant, ERC Advanced Grant under the Horizon 2020 Program NIH award from Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development DFG NIH National Institutes of Health (NIH)/NHLBI Agence Nationale de la Recherche (France Genomique) Alan and Sandra Gerry Metastasis and Tumor Ecosystems Center Rosetrees Trust GSK CZI Foundation Wellcome Trust Horizon 2020 Horizon2020 HCA 'discovAIR' project ERC Advanced Grant under the Horizon 2020 Program British Heart Foundation (BHF)/German Centre for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) grant CZI LENDULET-BIOMAG grant CZI Seed Network grant Stanford Child Health Research Institute CZI Biohub LungMAP and CZI Seed Network Agence Nationale de la Recherche (SAHARRA) Agence Nationale de la Recherche (UCAJEDI) Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy ERC advanced grant New-Chol CZI DAF, an advised fund of Silicon Valley Community Foundation NIAID Novel Alternative Model Systems for Enteric Diseases consortium HGF grant sparse2big German Research Foundation (ImmunoSensation2-the immune sensory system) Helmholtz Association CPI ATS Foundation/Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals Research Fellowship CZI-HCA Seed projects NHLBI/NIH HubMap consortium European Commission (ESPACE/HEuropean Union Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program) German Center for Lung Research Helmholtz Association's Initiative and Networking Fund through Helmholtz AI Silicon Valley Community Foundation NIAID Novel Alternative Model Systems NHLBI Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Sloan Fellowship in Chemistry Beckman Young Investigator Program NIH (NHLBI) HGF German Research Foundation (DFG) National Science Foundation Cambridge University Hospitals NIHR Biomedical Research Centre NHLBI Molecular Atlas of Lung Development Program Human Tissue Core grants National Natural Science Foundation of China National Key RD Program Conseil Departemental des Alpes Maritimes CZI (Silicon Valley Foundation) Fondation pour la Recherche Medicale Agence Nationale de la Recherche Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy by means of the PPP MRC of the Wellcome-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute Boehringer Ingelheim