Infection of cultured intestinal epithelial cells with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus

Cell Mol Life Sci. 2004 Aug;61(16):2100-12. doi: 10.1007/s00018-004-4222-9.


To identify a model for the study of intestinal pathogenesis of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) we tested the sensitivity of six human intestinal epithelial cell lines to infection with SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV). In permissive cell lines, effects of SARS-CoV on cellular gene expression were analysed using high-density oligonucleotide arrays. Caco-2 and CL-14 cell lines were found to be highly permissive to SARS-CoV, due to the presence of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 as a functional receptor. In both cell lines, SARS-CoV infection deregulated expression of cellular genes which may be important for the intestinal pathogenesis of SARS.

MeSH terms

  • Caco-2 Cells
  • Cell Survival
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism
  • Epithelial Cells / ultrastructure
  • Epithelial Cells / virology*
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism
  • Intestines / ultrastructure
  • Intestines / virology*
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Models, Biological
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Receptors, Virus / metabolism
  • SARS Virus / growth & development
  • SARS Virus / metabolism
  • SARS Virus / pathogenicity*


  • Receptors, Virus