Targeted therapeutics for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), especially severe cases, are currently lacking. As macrophages have unique effector functions as a first-line defense against invading pathogens, we genetically armed human macrophages with chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) to reprogram their phagocytic activity against SARS-CoV-2. After investigation of CAR constructs with different intracellular receptor domains, we found that although cytosolic domains from MERTK (CARMERTK) did not trigger antigen-specific cellular phagocytosis or killing effects, unlike those from MEGF10, FcRγ and CD3ζ did, these CARs all mediated similar SARS-CoV-2 clearance in vitro. Notably, we showed that CARMERTK macrophages reduced the virion load without upregulation of proinflammatory cytokine expression. These results suggest that CARMERTK drives an ‘immunologically silent’ scavenger effect in macrophages and pave the way for further investigation of CARs for the treatment of individuals with COVID-19, particularly those with severe cases at a high risk of hyperinflammation. ### Competing Interest Statement Competing Interests: the authors declare the following competing interests: J.Z. is a shareholder at KOCHKOR Biotech, Inc., Shanghai. W.F., J.Z. and S.H. are inventors on intellectual property related to this work. No potential conflicts of interest were disclosed by the other authors.
- Downloaded 1,233 times
- Download rankings, all-time:
- Site-wide: 19,265
- In bioengineering: 321
- Year to date:
- Site-wide: 10,287
- Since beginning of last month:
- Site-wide: 50,678
Downloads over time
Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide
- 27 Nov 2020: The website and API now include results pulled from medRxiv as well as bioRxiv.
- 18 Dec 2019: We're pleased to announce PanLingua, a new tool that enables you to search for machine-translated bioRxiv preprints using more than 100 different languages.
- 21 May 2019: PLOS Biology has published a community page about Rxivist.org and its design.
- 10 May 2019: The paper analyzing the Rxivist dataset has been published at eLife.
- 1 Mar 2019: We now have summary statistics about bioRxiv downloads and submissions.
- 8 Feb 2019: Data from Altmetric is now available on the Rxivist details page for every preprint. Look for the "donut" under the download metrics.
- 30 Jan 2019: preLights has featured the Rxivist preprint and written about our findings.
- 22 Jan 2019: Nature just published an article about Rxivist and our data.
- 13 Jan 2019: The Rxivist preprint is live!