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Nat Cell Biol ; 23(12): 1314-1328, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1559292


The lung is the primary organ targeted by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), making respiratory failure a leading coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related mortality. However, our cellular and molecular understanding of how SARS-CoV-2 infection drives lung pathology is limited. Here we constructed multi-omics and single-nucleus transcriptomic atlases of the lungs of patients with COVID-19, which integrate histological, transcriptomic and proteomic analyses. Our work reveals the molecular basis of pathological hallmarks associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection in different lung and infiltrating immune cell populations. We report molecular fingerprints of hyperinflammation, alveolar epithelial cell exhaustion, vascular changes and fibrosis, and identify parenchymal lung senescence as a molecular state of COVID-19 pathology. Moreover, our data suggest that FOXO3A suppression is a potential mechanism underlying the fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition associated with COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis. Our work depicts a comprehensive cellular and molecular atlas of the lungs of patients with COVID-19 and provides insights into SARS-CoV-2-related pulmonary injury, facilitating the identification of biomarkers and development of symptomatic treatments.

COVID-19/genetics , Lung/metabolism , Transcriptome/genetics , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/virology , COVID-19/metabolism , Fibrosis/metabolism , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/virology , Humans , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Proteomics/methods , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
Cell Res ; 31(4): 415-432, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-759580


Aging is a major risk factor for many diseases, especially in highly prevalent cardiopulmonary comorbidities and infectious diseases including Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Resolving cellular and molecular mechanisms associated with aging in higher mammals is therefore urgently needed. Here, we created young and old non-human primate single-nucleus/cell transcriptomic atlases of lung, heart and artery, the top tissues targeted by SARS-CoV-2. Analysis of cell type-specific aging-associated transcriptional changes revealed increased systemic inflammation and compromised virus defense as a hallmark of cardiopulmonary aging. With age, expression of the SARS-CoV-2 receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) was increased in the pulmonary alveolar epithelial barrier, cardiomyocytes, and vascular endothelial cells. We found that interleukin 7 (IL7) accumulated in aged cardiopulmonary tissues and induced ACE2 expression in human vascular endothelial cells in an NF-κB-dependent manner. Furthermore, treatment with vitamin C blocked IL7-induced ACE2 expression. Altogether, our findings depict the first transcriptomic atlas of the aged primate cardiopulmonary system and provide vital insights into age-linked susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2, suggesting that geroprotective strategies may reduce COVID-19 severity in the elderly.

Aging , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Transcriptome , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/cytology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/virology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , Ascorbic Acid/pharmacology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Endothelial Cells/cytology , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Endothelial Cells/virology , Humans , Interleukin-7/metabolism , Interleukin-7/pharmacology , Macaca fascicularis , Myocytes, Cardiac/cytology , Myocytes, Cardiac/metabolism , Myocytes, Cardiac/virology , RNA-Seq , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Single-Cell Analysis , Transcriptome/drug effects
Protein Cell ; 11(10): 740-770, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-709445


Age-associated changes in immune cells have been linked to an increased risk for infection. However, a global and detailed characterization of the changes that human circulating immune cells undergo with age is lacking. Here, we combined scRNA-seq, mass cytometry and scATAC-seq to compare immune cell types in peripheral blood collected from young and old subjects and patients with COVID-19. We found that the immune cell landscape was reprogrammed with age and was characterized by T cell polarization from naive and memory cells to effector, cytotoxic, exhausted and regulatory cells, along with increased late natural killer cells, age-associated B cells, inflammatory monocytes and age-associated dendritic cells. In addition, the expression of genes, which were implicated in coronavirus susceptibility, was upregulated in a cell subtype-specific manner with age. Notably, COVID-19 promoted age-induced immune cell polarization and gene expression related to inflammation and cellular senescence. Therefore, these findings suggest that a dysregulated immune system and increased gene expression associated with SARS-CoV-2 susceptibility may at least partially account for COVID-19 vulnerability in the elderly.

Aging/immunology , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Immune System/immunology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Single-Cell Analysis , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Aging/genetics , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/metabolism , COVID-19 , Cell Lineage , Chromatin Assembly and Disassembly , Cytokine Release Syndrome/etiology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokines/biosynthesis , Cytokines/genetics , Disease Susceptibility , Flow Cytometry/methods , Gene Expression Profiling , Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental , Gene Rearrangement , Humans , Immune System/cytology , Immune System/growth & development , Immunocompetence/genetics , Inflammation/genetics , Inflammation/immunology , Mass Spectrometry/methods , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Transcriptome , Young Adult