The renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system as a link between obesity and coronavirus disease 2019 severity.
Akoumianakis I., Filippatos T.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the severe acute respiratory distress coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2), is a rapidly evolving pandemic challenging the world and posing unprecedented public health issues. Current data show that COVID-19 is associated with increased disease severity in individuals with obesity. Obesity is usually associated with dysregulated renin-angiotensin-aldosterone (RAAS) axis. RAAS has also been implicated in acute lung injury as well as myocardial injury and has thus attracted interest as a potential regulator of COVID-19 severity. Whilst research all over the world is still struggling to provide a detailed characterization of the biology of SARS-CoV2 and its associated disease profile, it has become evident that SARS-CoV2 uses the membrane-bound form of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) as a receptor for cell internalization. ACE2 is a protective component of the RAAS axis and is downregulated after SARS-CoV2 infection. The RAAS axis could thus be a link between obesity and COVID-19 severity; therefore, more accurate understanding of the underlying mechanisms would be needed with the hope of proposing efficient therapeutic interventions.