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Chemical Senses ; 46, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1665930

ABSTRACT

Olfaction is a closely coordinated partnership between odorant flow and neuronal signaling. Disruption in our ability to detect odors, or anosmia, has emerged as a hallmark symptom of infection with SARS-CoV-2, and yet, decoding the mechanism behind this abrupt sensory deficit remains elusive. Patients with COVID-19 lack symptoms of nasal congestion and rhinorrhea present in many upper respiratory tract infections that result in a conductive reduction in an ability to perceive smells. To investigate the molecular underpinnings of SARS-CoV-2 related smell loss, we performed molecular analysis, including scRNAseq, RNA-FISH, and Hi-C on both human and syrian golden hamster olfactory epithelium. Here, we report that smell loss may be attributable to non-cell autonomous mechanisms that induce genomic compartment dysregulation and subsequent downregulation of critical signaling pathways responsible for production of olfactory receptors.

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