COVID-19, Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 and Renin-Angiotensin System Inhibition: Implications for Practice

(E-pub Ahead of Print)

Author(s): Vasiliki Katsi, George Pavlidis*, George Charalambous, Dimitrios Tousoulis, Konstantinos Toutouzas

Journal Name: Current Hypertension Reviews

Become EABM
Become Reviewer
Call for Editor


Background: Recent studies suggested that patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) who use renin-angiotensin system (RAS) inhibitors have an increased risk of respiratory failure and death. The hypothesis was that angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEIs) or angiotensin receptor blocker (ARBs) may up-regulate ACE2 expression that is used as receptor for viral entry into cells.

Objective: The purpose of this review is to discuss the existing evidence on the interaction between COVID-19 infection, ACE2 and ACEIs or ARBs and to examine the main implications for clinical practice. In addition, novel therapeutic strategies for blocking ACE2-mediated COVID-19 infection will be displayed.

Methods: We performed a comprehensive review of the literature to identify data from clinical and experimental studies for the association between COVID-19 infection, ACE2 and RAS inhibition.

Results: The current clinical and experimental evidence for ACEIs or ARBs to facilitate severe acute respiratory distress syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is insufficient to suggest discontinuing these drugs. Several observational studies arrive at the conclusion that the continued use of RAS inhibitors is unlike to be harmful in COVID-19-positive patients.

Conclusions: Further randomized trials are needed to answer definitely the question of whether RAS inhibitors are harmful or beneficial to patients with COVID-19.

Keywords: COVID-19, hypertension, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2, renin-angiotensin system, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, angiotensin receptor blocker.

Rights & PermissionsPrintExport Cite as

Article Details

(E-pub Ahead of Print)
DOI: 10.2174/1573402117666210121100201
Price: $95

Article Metrics

PDF: 431