Life Sci. 2020 Jul 23:118142. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2020.118142. Online ahead of print.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is currently defined as the worst pandemic disease. SARS-CoV-2 infects human cells via the binding of its S protein to the receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE2). The use of ACEIs/ARBs (RAAS inhibitors) regulates the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) and may increase ACE2 expression. Considering the large use of ACEIs/ARBs in hypertensive patients, some professional groups are concerned about whether the use of RAAS inhibitors affects the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection or the risk of severe illness and mortality in COVID-19 patients. In this review, we summarize preclinical and clinical studies to investigate whether the use of ACEIs/ARBs increases ACE2 expression in animals or patients. We also analyzed whether the use of these drugs affects the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection, severe illness or mortality based on recent studies. Finally, the review suggests that current evidence does not support the concerns.