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One hypothesis for which we have some supporting evidence is that the new virus (SARS-CoV-2) "enters human cells through an interaction with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2" see here. Although it is still unclear what genes to target in order to prevent the infection (entry or reproduction).

Is there empirical evidence suggesting what genes can be modulated to fight the infection?

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  • $\begingroup$ The linked article does not suggest "targeting the gene that modulates ACE2"...I think you've misunderstood. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Krause Mar 25 at 15:28
  • $\begingroup$ Hi thanks for your comment. Could you please expand $\endgroup$ – mrb Mar 25 at 15:30
  • $\begingroup$ "The researchers concluded that their research could contribute to structure-based designs of decoy ligands or antibodies able to specifically target ACE2 or coronavirus spike proteins to prevent viral infection." - They're talking about making decoys that look like ACE2 (virus binds these rather than real ACE2), or antibodies that bind ACE2 or the coronavirus spike protein. Antibodies that bind ACE2 sounds like a horrible idea to me and one they probably didn't think through too much. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Krause Mar 25 at 15:37
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This is an interesting question. A recent study published on bioRxiv by researchers from Xi'an, China (pre-print) argues that CD147 can also be an entry receptor for the virus. They showed virus entry can be blocked by an antibody to human CD147.

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