ACE2 & TMPRSS2 Expressions in Head & Neck Tissues: A Systematic Review.

Head and Neck Pathology
Jerome R LechienSven Saussez


To review the data regarding the expression of angiotensin converting enzyme-2 (ACE2) and transmembrane protease serine-2 (TMPRSS2) in head and neck tissue. Scopus, Cochrane Library, Medrxiv, Google Scholar and PubMED/MEDLINE were searched by four independent investigators for studies investigating ACE2 or TMPRSS2 expressions in head and neck tissues. The following outcomes were considered: sample origin (animal versus human); detection method; anatomical location and cell types. PRISMA checklist and modified population, intervention, comparison, outcome, timing and setting (PICOTS) framework were used to perform the review. Of the 24 identified studies, 17 met our inclusion criteria. Thirteen studies were conducted during the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were expressed in oral, pharyngeal, sinusonasal human mucosa. The following cell types expressed ACE2: basal, apical, goblet, minor salivary, and endothelial cells. TMPRSS2 was found in goblet and apical respiratory cells. ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were found in the olfactory region, especially in sustentacular non-neural and neural stem cells. Animal studies suggested that ACE2 expression may vary regarding age. There was an i...Continue Reading


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