Severely ill COVID-19 patients display augmented functional properties in SARS-CoV-2-reactive CD8 + T cells

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Anthony KusnadiChristian H Ottensmeier

Abstract

The molecular properties of CD8 + T cells that respond to SARS-CoV-2 infection are not fully known. Here, we report on the single-cell transcriptomes of >80,000 virus-reactive CD8 + T cells from 39 COVID-19 patients and 10 healthy subjects. COVID-19 patients segregated into two groups based on whether the dominant CD8 + T cell response to SARS-CoV-2 was 'exhausted' or not. SARS-CoV-2-reactive cells in the exhausted subset were increased in frequency and displayed lesser cytotoxicity and inflammatory features in COVID-19 patients with mild compared to severe illness. In contrast, SARS-CoV-2-reactive cells in the non-exhausted subsets from patients with severe disease showed enrichment of transcripts linked to co-stimulation, pro-survival NF-κB signaling, and anti-apoptotic pathways, suggesting the generation of robust CD8 + T cell memory responses in patients with severe COVID-19 illness. CD8 + T cells reactive to influenza and respiratory syncytial virus from healthy subjects displayed polyfunctional features. Cells with such features were mostly absent in SARS-CoV-2 responsive cells from both COVID-19 patients and healthy controls non-exposed to SARS-CoV-2. Overall, our single-cell analysis revealed substantial diversity in th...Continue Reading

Citations

Nov 7, 2020·International Reviews of Immunology·Vijay Kumar

Datasets Mentioned

BETA
GSE153931

Methods Mentioned

BETA
Flow Cytometry
RNA-seq
PCA

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