LONG COVID WP8 – Papotti B. et al.

LONG COVID WP8 – Study of the molecular and pathological mechanisms involved in cardiovascular diseases


A number of studies have highlighted important alterations of the lipid profile in COVID-19 patients. Besides the well-known atheroprotective function, HDL displays anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, and anti-infectious properties. The aim of this retrospective study was to assess the HDL anti-inflammatory and antioxidant features, by evaluation of HDL-associated Serum amyloid A (SAA) enrichment and HDL-paraoxonase 1 (PON-1) activity, in a cohort of COVID-19 patients hospitalized at the Cardiorespiratory COVID-19 Unit of Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico of Milan.

COVID-19 patients reached very low levels of HDL-c (mean ± SD: 27.1 ± 9.7 mg/dL) with a marked rise in TG (mean ± SD: 165.9 ± 62.5 mg/dL). Compared to matched-controls, SAA levels were significantly raised in COVID-19 patients at admission. There were no significant differences in the SAA amount between 83 alive and 22 dead patients for all-cause in-hospital mortality. Similar findings were reached in the case of PON-1 activity, with no differences between alive and dead patients for all-cause in-hospital mortality.

In conclusion, although not related to the prediction of in-hospital mortality, reduction in HDL-c and the enrichment of SAA in HDL are a mirror of SARS-CoV-2 positivity even at the very early stages of the infection.

Reference: Papotti B, Macchi C, Favero C, Iodice S, Adorni MP, Zimetti F, et al. HDL in COVID-19 Patients: Evidence from an Italian Cross-Sectional Study. J Clin Med. 2021;10(24). Epub 2021/12/25. doi: 10.3390/jcm10245955. PubMed PMID: 34945250; PubMed Central PMCID: PMCPMC8708284