Tumor markers as an entry for SARS-CoV-2 infection?

The FEBS Journal
Pu Xia, Anna Dubrovska


Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the highly contagious illness caused by a novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has spread across the globe, becoming one of the most challenging public health crisis of our times. SARS-CoV-2 can cause severe disease associated with multiple organ damage. Cancer patients have a higher risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection and death. While the virus uses angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) as the primary entry receptor, the recent experimental and clinical findings suggest that some tumor markers, including CD147 (Basigin), can provide a new entry for SARS-CoV-2 infection through binding to the viral spike (S) protein. In the absence of specific viral drugs, blocking of CD147 might be a way to prevent virus invasion. Identifying other target proteins is of high importance as targeting the alternative receptors for SARS-CoV-2 might open up a promising avenue for the treatment of COVID-19 patients, including those who have cancer.


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