DOI: 10.1126/science.abc1669 ISSN:

SARS-CoV-2 productively infects human gut enterocytes

Mart M. Lamers, Joep Beumer, Jelte van der Vaart, Kèvin Knoops, Jens Puschhof, Tim I. Breugem, Raimond B. G. Ravelli, J. Paul van Schayck, Anna Z. Mykytyn, Hans Q. Duimel, Elly van Donselaar, Samra Riesebosch, Helma J. H. Kuijpers, Debby Schipper, Willine J. van de Wetering, Miranda de Graaf, Marion Koopmans, Edwin Cuppen, Peter J. Peters, Bart L. Haagmans, Hans Clevers
  • Multidisciplinary

Intestinal organoids as an infection model

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes an influenza-like disease with a respiratory transmission route; however, patients often present with gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Moreover, the virus has been detected in anal swabs, and cells in the inner-gut lining express the receptor that SARS-CoV-2 uses to gain entry to cells. Lamerset al.used human intestinal organoids, a “mini-gut” cultured in a dish, to demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 readily replicates in an abundant cell type in the gut lining—the enterocyte—resulting in the production of large amounts of infective virus particles in the intestine. This work demonstrates that intestinal organoids can serve as a model to understand SARS-CoV-2 biology and infectivity in the gut.

Science, this issue p.50

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