Smail SW, Babaei E, Amin K, Abdulahad WH
Front Immunol 14 (-) 1145840 [2023-05-22; online 2023-05-22]
The hyperinflammatory response, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome-2 (SARS-CoV-2), is the most common cause of death in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The etiopathogenesis of this illness is not fully understood. Macrophages appear to play a key part in COVID-19's pathogenic effects. Therefore, this study aims to examine serum inflammatory cytokines associated with the activation state of macrophages in COVID-19 patients and attempt to find accurate predictive markers for disease severity and mortality risk in hospital. 180 patients with COVID-19 and 90 healthy controls (HCs) participated in this study. Patients were divided into three different subgroups, mild (n=81), severe (n=60), and critical groups (n=39). Serum samples were collected and IL (Interleukin)-10, IL-23, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), IL-17, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) and chemokine ligand 3 (CCL3) were determined by ELISA. In parallel, myeloperoxidase (MPO) and C-reactive protein (CRP) were measured using colorimetric and electrochemiluminescence methods, respectively. Data were collected, and their associations with disease progression and mortality were assessed using regression models and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. Compared to HCs, a significant increase in IL-23, IL-10, TNF-α, IFN-γ and MCP-1, were observed in COVID-19 patients. Serum levels of IL-23, IL-10, and TNF-α were significantly higher in COVID-19 patients with critical cases compared to mild and severe cases, and correlated positively with CRP level. However, non-significant changes were found in serum MPO and CCL3 among the studied groups. Moreover, significant positive association has been observed among increased IL-10, IL-23 and TNF-α in serum of COVID-19 patients. Furthermore, a binary logistic regression model was applied to predict death's independent factors. Results showed that IL-10 alone or in combination with IL23 and TNF-α are strongly linked with non-survivors in COVID-19 patients. Finally, ROC curve results uncovered that IL-10, IL-23 and TNF-α were excellent predictors for prognosing COVID-19. The elevations of IL-10, IL-23, and TNF-α levels were seen in severe and critical cases of COVID-19 patients and their elevations were linked to the in-hospital mortality of the disease. A prediction model shows that the determination of these cytokines upon admission is important and should be done on COVID-19 patients as a way of evaluating the prognosis of the disease. COVID-19 Patients with high IL-10, IL-23, and TNF-α on admission are more likely to experience a severe form of the disease; therefore, those patients should be cautionary monitored and treated.