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Review

Potential of Ocular Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Review

1
NVISION Eye Centers—South Sacramento, 7501 Hospital Dr. Suite 105, Sacramento, CA 95823, USA
2
Shiley Eye Institute, Viterbi Family Department of Ophthalmology, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Vision 2020, 4(3), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4030040
Received: 24 July 2020 / Revised: 23 August 2020 / Accepted: 25 August 2020 / Published: 1 September 2020
Purpose of review: to provide a prospective on the current mechanisms by which SARS-CoV-2 enters cells and replicates, and its implications for ocular transmission. The literature was analyzed to understand ocular transmission as well as molecular mechanisms by which SARS-CoV-2 enters cells and replicates. Analysis of gene expression profiles from available datasets, published immunohistochemistry, as well as current literature was reviewed, to assess the likelihood that ocular inoculation of SARS-CoV-2 results in systemic infection. Recent findings: The ocular surface and retina have the necessary proteins, Transmembrane Serine Protease 2 (TMPRSS2), CD147, Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) and Cathepsin L (CTSL) necessary to be infected with SARS-CoV-2. In addition to direct ocular infection, virus carried by tears through the nasolacrimal duct to nasal epithelium represent a means of ocular inoculation. Summary: There is evidence that SARS-CoV-2 may either directly infect cells on the ocular surface, or virus can be carried by tears through the nasolacrimal duct to infect the nasal or gastrointestinal epithelium.
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Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; ocular transmission; conjunctivitis; coronavirus SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; ocular transmission; conjunctivitis; coronavirus
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MDPI and ACS Style

Barnett, B.P.; Wahlin, K.; Krawczyk, M.; Spencer, D.; Welsbie, D.; Afshari, N.; Chao, D. Potential of Ocular Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Review. Vision 2020, 4, 40. https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4030040

AMA Style

Barnett BP, Wahlin K, Krawczyk M, Spencer D, Welsbie D, Afshari N, Chao D. Potential of Ocular Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Review. Vision. 2020; 4(3):40. https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4030040

Chicago/Turabian Style

Barnett, Brad P., Karl Wahlin, Michal Krawczyk, Doran Spencer, Derek Welsbie, Natalie Afshari, and Daniel Chao. 2020. "Potential of Ocular Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Review" Vision 4, no. 3: 40. https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4030040

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