A single-cell atlas of the peripheral immune response to severe COVID-19. medRxiv : the preprint server for health sciences Wilk, A. J., Rustagi, A., Zhao, N. Q., Roque, J., Martinez-Colon, G. J., McKechnie, J. L., Ivison, G. T., Ranganath, T., Vergara, R., Hollis, T., Simpson, L. J., Grant, P., Subramanian, A., Rogers, A. J., Blish, C. A. 2020


There is an urgent need to better understand the pathophysiology of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the global pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2. Here, we apply single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) to peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of 7 patients hospitalized with confirmed COVID-19 and 6 healthy controls. We identify substantial reconfiguration of peripheral immune cell phenotype in COVID-19, including a heterogeneous interferon-stimulated gene (ISG) signature, HLA class II downregulation, and a novel B cell-derived granulocyte population appearing in patients with acute respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation. Importantly, peripheral monocytes and lymphocytes do not express substantial amounts of pro-inflammatory cytokines, suggesting that circulating leukocytes do not significantly contribute to the potential COVID-19 cytokine storm. Collectively, we provide the most thorough cell atlas to date of the peripheral immune response to severe COVID-19.

View details for DOI 10.1101/2020.04.17.20069930

View details for PubMedID 32511639