Adv Exp Med Biol. 2021;1321:127-138. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-59261-5_11.
The SARS-CoV-2 virus which causes COVID-19 disease was initially described in the Hubei Province of China and has since spread to more than 200 countries and territories of the world. Severe cases of the disease are characterised by release of high levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and other inflammatory mediators in a process characterised as a cytokine storm. These inflammatory mediators are associated with pathological leukocyte activation states with tissue damage. Here, we review these effects with a focus on their potential use in diagnosis, patient stratification and prognosis, as well as new drug targets.