COVID-19 Research Paper Volume 12, Issue 22 pp 22370—22389

Genomic, epigenomic, and immune subtype analysis of CTSL/B and SARS-CoV-2 receptor ACE2 in pan-cancer

Huimin Li1,2, *, , Longxiang Xie1, *, , Lin Chen1, *, , Lu Zhang1, , Yali Han1, , Zhongyi Yan1, , Xiangqian Guo1, ,

  • 1 Institute of Biomedical Informatics, Cell Signal Transduction Laboratory, Bioinformatics Center, Henan Provincial Engineering Center for Tumor Molecular Medicine, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng 475004, China
  • 2 Department of Histology and Embryology, Henan International Joint Laboratory for Nuclear Protein Regulation, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng 475004, China
* Equal contribution

Received: July 10, 2020       Accepted: September 21, 2020       Published: November 20, 2020
How to Cite

Copyright © 2020 Li et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


SARS-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been spreading widely and posing an international challenge for both healthcare and society. At present, cancer has been identified as an individual risk factor for COVID-19. Angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and Cathepsin L/Cathepsin B (CTSL/B), which act as the receptor and entry-associated proteases of SARS-CoV-2 respectively, are pivotal for SARS-CoV-2 infection. To investigate the possible SARS-CoV-2 infection risk of pan-cancer, we analyzed the genetic alterations, RNA expression, DNA methylation, and the association with immune subtypes of ACE2 and CTSL/B with the prognosis in pan-cancer. Results showed the upregulation of CTSL/B and ACE2 in Pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PAAD) and Stomach adenocarcinoma (STAD) and demonstrated a positive correlation between copy number alteration (CNA) and gene expression for CTSB in PAAD and STAD. Hypomethylation and a negative correlation of gene expression and methylation for CTSB were detected in PAAD. In addition, ACE2 and CTSL/B are overexpressed in the IFN-gamma immune subtype of ovarian serous Cystadenocarcinoma (OV), Cervical squamous cell carcinoma and endocervical adenocarcinoma (CESC), and Bladder urothelial carcinoma (BLCA). Our study presents a bioinformatics assessment for the potential risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection in pan-cancer.


ACC: Adrenocortical carcinoma; BLCA: Bladder Urothelial Carcinoma; BRCA: Breast invasive carcinoma; CESC: Cervical squamous cell carcinoma and endocervical adenocarcinoma; CHOL: Cholangio carcinoma; COAD: Colon adenocarcinoma; CRC: colorectal Cancer; DLBC: Lymphoid Neoplasm Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma; EAC: Esophageal Adenocarcinoma; ESCA: Esophageal carcinoma; ESCC: esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; GBM: Glioblastoma multiforme; HNSC: Head and Neck squamous cell carcinoma; KICH: Kidney Chromophobe; KIRC: Kidney renal clear cell carcinoma; KIRP: Kidney renal papillary cell carcinoma; LAML: Acute Myeloid Leukemia; LGG: Brain Lower Grade Glioma; LIHC: Liver hepatocellular carcinoma; LMS: Leiomyosarcoma; LUAD: Lung adenocarcinoma; LUCA: Lung cancer; LUSC: Lung squamous cell carcinoma; MESO: Mesothelioma; MFS: Myxofibrosarcoma; OV: Ovarian serous cystadenocarcinoma; OS: Osteosarcoma; PAAD: Pancreatic adenocarcinoma; PCPG: Pheochromocytoma and Paraganglioma; PRAD: Prostate adenocarcinoma; READ: Rectum adenocarcinoma; SARC: Sarcoma; SKCM: Skin Cutaneous Melanoma; STAD: Stomach Adenocarcinoma; TGCT: Testicular Germ Cell Tumors; THCA: Thyroid carcinoma; THYM: Thymoma; UCEC: Uterine Corpus Endometrial Carcinoma; UCS: Uterine Carcinosarcoma; UVM: Uveal Melanoma.