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Biomarkers to prognosticate the outcomes and guide the treatment of patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are currently required. We aimed to investigate whether the dynamic variation of cytokines was associated with the survival of patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). A retrospective study was performed on 40 patients with COVID-19 admitted to the ICU in Wuhan, China. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory variables were collected, and serum cytokines were kinetically assessed. A multivariable-adjusted generalized linear regression model was used to analyze the differences in serum cytokine levels between survivors and non-survivors. Among the 40 patients included, we found a positive correlation between multiple cytokines. Serum levels of interleukin (IL)-6, IL-10, and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) in non-survivors were consistently elevated compared to those in the survivors. Kinetic variations in IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10 were associated with a fatal outcome in patients with severe COVID-19, independent of sex, age, absolute lymphocyte count, direct bilirubin, hypertension, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and cancer as well as the use of glucocorticoids and tocilizumab. Dynamic changes in serum IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10 levels were associated with survival in patients in the ICU, and could serve as a predictive biomarker to determine the therapeutic options for patients with severe COVID-19.


Jia Li, Liu Rong, Ran Cui, Jiaqi Feng, Yuyang Jin, Xiaoxiang Chen, Renying Xu. Dynamic changes in serum IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10 predict the outcome of ICU patients with severe COVID-19. Annals of palliative medicine. 2021 Apr;10(4):3706-3714

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PMID: 33615814

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