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To examine innate immune responses in early SARS-CoV-2 infection that may change clinical outcomes, we compared nasopharyngeal swab data from 20 virus-positive and 20 virus-negative individuals. Multiple innate immune-related and ACE-2 transcripts increased with infection and were strongly associated with increasing viral load. We found widespread discrepancies between transcription and translation. Interferon proteins were unchanged or decreased in infected samples suggesting virally-induced shut-off of host anti-viral protein responses. However, IP-10 and several interferon-stimulated gene proteins increased with viral load. Older age was associated with modifications of some effects. Our findings may characterize the disrupted immune landscape of early disease.

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