In less than nine months, the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has killed hundreds of thousands of people, including >23,000 in New York City (NYC) alone. The pandemic’s sudden emergence highlights clinical needs to detect infection, track strain evolution, and identify biomarkers of disease course. To address these challenges, we designed a fast (30-minute) colorimetric test (LAMP) for SARS-CoV-2 infection from naso/oropharyngeal swabs and a large-scale shotgun metatranscriptomics platform (total-RNA-seq) for host, viral, and microbial profiling. We applied these methods to clinical specimens gathered from 669 patients in New York City during the first two months of the outbreak, yielding a broad molecular portrait of the emerging COVID-19 disease. We find significant enrichment of a NYC-distinctive clade of the virus (20C), as well as host responses in interferon, ACE, hematological, and olfaction pathways. In addition, clinical data from 50,821 patients shows evidence of a protective impact of patients taking ACE inhibitors, which is distinct from other drugs. Finally, spatial transcriptomic data from COVID-19 patient autopsy tissues reveal distinct ACE2 expression loci, with macrophage and neutrophil infiltration in the lungs. These findings can inform public health and may help develop and drive new SARS-CoV-2 diagnostic, prevention, and treatment strategies.
1. List several ways to profile the SARS-CoV-2 virus'
2. Describe the host and viral responses from infection for SARS-CoV-2