Non-permissive SARS-CoV-2 infection in human neurospheres

Stem Cell Res. 2021 Jul:54:102436. doi: 10.1016/j.scr.2021.102436. Epub 2021 Jun 20.


Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was initially described as a viral infection of the respiratory tract. It is now known, however, that several other organs are affected, including the brain. Neurological manifestations such as stroke, encephalitis, and psychiatric conditions have been reported in COVID-19 patients, but the neurotropic potential of the virus is still debated. Herein, we sought to investigate SARS-CoV-2 infection in human neural cells. We demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 infection of neural tissue is non-permissive, however, it can elicit inflammatory response and cell damage. These findings add to the hypothesis that most of the neural damage caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection is due to a systemic inflammation leading to indirect harmful effects on the central nervous system despite the absence of local viral replication.

Keywords: Brain; Neurospheres; New coronavirus; SARS-CoV-2; iPS.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain
  • COVID-19*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation
  • SARS-CoV-2*