Single-Cell RNA-seq Identifies Cell Subsets in Human Placenta That Highly Expresses Factors Driving Pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2

Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
Nancy AsharyDeepak Modi

Abstract

Infection by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) results in the novel coronavirus disease COVID-19, which has posed a serious threat globally. Infection of SARS-CoV-2 during pregnancy is associated with complications such as preterm labor and premature rupture of membranes, and a proportion of neonates born to infected mothers are also positive for the virus. During pregnancy, the placental barrier protects the fetus from pathogens and ensures healthy development. To predict if the placenta is permissive to SARS-CoV-2, we utilized publicly available single-cell RNA-seq data to identify if the placental cells express the necessary factors required for infection. SARS-CoV-2 binding receptor ACE2 and the S protein priming protease TMPRSS2 are co-expressed by a subset of syncytiotrophoblasts (STB) in the first trimester and extravillous trophoblasts (EVT) in the second trimester human placenta. In addition, the non-canonical receptor BSG/CD147 and other proteases (CTSL, CTSB, and FURIN) are detected in most of the placental cells. Other coronavirus family receptors (ANPEP and DPP4) were also expressed in the first and second trimester placental cells. Additionally, the term placenta of multiple species ...Continue Reading

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Datasets Mentioned

BETA
GSE89497
GSE124282
GSE79121

Methods Mentioned

BETA
scRNA-seq
Magnetic Activated Cell Sorting
RNA-seq
electron microscopy
PCR
available
affinity-purification

Software Mentioned

pheatmap R package
UMAP
PANTHER
GraphPad Prism
Google Scholar
gplots R package

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