J Clin Med. 2020 Jul 21;9(7):E2315. doi: 10.3390/jcm9072315.
BACKGROUND: The new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, responsible for the Covid-19 pandemic, uses the angiotensin converting enzyme type 2 (ACE2), a physiological inhibitor of the renin angiotensin aldosterone system (RAAS), as a cellular receptor to infect cells. Since the RAAS can induce and modulate pro-inflammatory responses, it could play a key role in the pathophysiology of Covid-19. Thus, we aimed to determine the levels of plasma renin and aldosterone as indicators of RAAS activation in a series of consecutively admitted patients for Covid-19 in our clinic.
METHODS: Plasma renin and aldosterone levels were measured, among the miscellaneous investigations needed for Covid-19 management, early after admission in our clinic. Disease severity was assessed using a seven-category ordinal scale. Primary outcome of interest was the severity of patients' clinical courses.
RESULTS: Forty-four patients were included. At inclusion, 12 patients had mild clinical status, 25 moderate clinical status and 7 severe clinical status. In univariate analyses, aldosterone and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels at inclusion were significantly higher in patients with severe clinical course as compared to those with mild or moderate course (p < 0.01 and p = 0.03, respectively). In multivariate analyses, only aldosterone and CRP levels remained positively associated with severity. We also observed a positive significant correlation between aldosterone and CRP levels among patients with an aldosterone level greater than 102.5 pmol/L.
CONCLUSIONS: Both plasmatic aldosterone and CRP levels at inclusion are associated with the clinical course of Covid-19. Our findings may open new perspectives in the understanding of the possible role of RAAS for Covid-19 outcome.