BACKGROUND: Despite severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-Coronavirus (CoV-2) primarily targeting the lungs, the heart represents another critical virus target. Thus, the identification of SARS-CoV-2 disease of 2019 (COVID-19)-associated biomarkers would be beneficial to stratify prognosis and the risk of developing cardiac complications. Aldosterone and galectin-3 promote fibrosis and inflammation and are considered a prognostic biomarker of lung and adverse cardiac remodeling. Here, we tested whether galectin-3 and aldosterone levels can predict adverse cardiac outcomes in COVID-19 patients. METHODS: To this aim, we assessed galectin-3 and aldosterone serum levels in 51 patients diagnosed with COVID-19, using a population of 19 healthy subjects as controls. In in-vitro studies, we employed 3T3 fibroblasts to assess the potential roles of aldosterone and galectin-3 in fibroblast activation. RESULTS: Serum galectin-3 levels were more elevated in COVID-19 patients than healthy controls and correlated with COVID-19 severity classification and cardiac troponin-I (cTnI) serum levels. Furthermore, we observed an augmented secretion of aldosterone in COVID-19 patients. This adrenal hormone is a direct stimulator of galectin-3 secretion; therefore, we surmised that this axis could perpetrate fibrosis and adverse remodeling in these subjects. Thus, we stimulated fibroblasts with 10% of serum from COVID-19 patients. This challenge markedly rose the expression of smooth muscle alpha (α)-2 actin (ACTA2), a myofibroblast marker. CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that COVID-19 can affect cardiac structure and function by triggering aldosterone and galectin-3 release that may serve as prognostic and therapeutic biomarkers while monitoring the course of cardiac complications in patients suffering from COVID-19.

Serum Galectin-3 and Aldosterone: potential biomarkers of cardiac complications in patients with COVID-19 / Cannavo, Alessandro; Liccardo, Daniela; Gelzo, Monica; Amato, Felice; Gentile, Ivan; Pinchera, Biagio; Femminella, GRAZIA DANIELA; Parrella, Roberto; DE ROSA, Annunziata; Gambino, Giuseppina; Marzano, Federica; Ferrara, Nicola; Paolocci, Nazareno; Rengo, Giuseppe; Castaldo, Giuseppe. - In: MINERVA ENDOCRINOLOGY. - ISSN 2724-6507. - 47:3(2022), pp. 270-278. [10.23736/S2724-6507.22.03789-7]

Serum Galectin-3 and Aldosterone: potential biomarkers of cardiac complications in patients with COVID-19

Alessandro Cannavo;Daniela Liccardo;Monica Gelzo;Felice Amato;Ivan Gentile;Biagio Pinchera;Grazia D Femminella;Roberto Parrella;Annunziata DE Rosa;Giuseppina Gambino;Federica Marzano;Nicola Ferrara;Giuseppe Rengo;Giuseppe Castaldo
2022

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Despite severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-Coronavirus (CoV-2) primarily targeting the lungs, the heart represents another critical virus target. Thus, the identification of SARS-CoV-2 disease of 2019 (COVID-19)-associated biomarkers would be beneficial to stratify prognosis and the risk of developing cardiac complications. Aldosterone and galectin-3 promote fibrosis and inflammation and are considered a prognostic biomarker of lung and adverse cardiac remodeling. Here, we tested whether galectin-3 and aldosterone levels can predict adverse cardiac outcomes in COVID-19 patients. METHODS: To this aim, we assessed galectin-3 and aldosterone serum levels in 51 patients diagnosed with COVID-19, using a population of 19 healthy subjects as controls. In in-vitro studies, we employed 3T3 fibroblasts to assess the potential roles of aldosterone and galectin-3 in fibroblast activation. RESULTS: Serum galectin-3 levels were more elevated in COVID-19 patients than healthy controls and correlated with COVID-19 severity classification and cardiac troponin-I (cTnI) serum levels. Furthermore, we observed an augmented secretion of aldosterone in COVID-19 patients. This adrenal hormone is a direct stimulator of galectin-3 secretion; therefore, we surmised that this axis could perpetrate fibrosis and adverse remodeling in these subjects. Thus, we stimulated fibroblasts with 10% of serum from COVID-19 patients. This challenge markedly rose the expression of smooth muscle alpha (α)-2 actin (ACTA2), a myofibroblast marker. CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that COVID-19 can affect cardiac structure and function by triggering aldosterone and galectin-3 release that may serve as prognostic and therapeutic biomarkers while monitoring the course of cardiac complications in patients suffering from COVID-19.
2022
Serum Galectin-3 and Aldosterone: potential biomarkers of cardiac complications in patients with COVID-19 / Cannavo, Alessandro; Liccardo, Daniela; Gelzo, Monica; Amato, Felice; Gentile, Ivan; Pinchera, Biagio; Femminella, GRAZIA DANIELA; Parrella, Roberto; DE ROSA, Annunziata; Gambino, Giuseppina; Marzano, Federica; Ferrara, Nicola; Paolocci, Nazareno; Rengo, Giuseppe; Castaldo, Giuseppe. - In: MINERVA ENDOCRINOLOGY. - ISSN 2724-6507. - 47:3(2022), pp. 270-278. [10.23736/S2724-6507.22.03789-7]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/877520
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