The gonadal niche safeguards human fetal germline cell development following maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Shen S, Wang M, Li X, Wang B, Hong W, Li W, Xu B, Guo Z, Han R, Yi S, Wu Z, He X, Wang L, Zhu Q, Yang G, Wang H, Deng Q, Chen J, Gao S, Jiang C, Gao R

Cell Rep Med - (-) 101515 [2024-04-09; online 2024-04-09]

During pregnancy, germline development is vital for maintaining the continuation of species. Recent studies have shown increased pregnancy risks in COVID-19 patients at the perinatal stage. However, the potential consequence of infection for reproductive quality in developing fetuses remains unclear. Here, we analyze the transcriptome and DNA methylome of the fetal germline following maternal severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. We find that infection at early gestational age, a critical period of human primordial germ cell specification and epigenetic reprogramming, trivially affects fetal germ cell (FGC) development. Additionally, FGC-niche communications are not compromised by maternal infection. Strikingly, both general and SARS-CoV-2-specific immune pathways are greatly activated in gonadal niche cells to protect FGCs from maternal infection. Notably, there occurs an "in advance" development tendency in FGCs after maternal infection. Our study provides insights into the impacts of maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection on fetal germline development and serves as potential clinical guidance for future pandemics.

Category: Health

Category: Other

Type: Journal article

PubMed 38631348

DOI 10.1016/j.xcrm.2024.101515

Crossref 10.1016/j.xcrm.2024.101515

pii: S2666-3791(24)00184-8

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