Extreme COVID-19 sufferers endure alterations o

picture: Monitoring of affected person within the Intensive Care Unit at Hospital Parc Taulí. © ICFO
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Credit score: ICFO

Because the detection of the primary Sars-Cov-2 an infection instances in November 2019, greater than 250 million individuals worldwide have been recognized with the illness, and greater than 5 million have died [1].

Though COVID-19 is primarily a respiratory syndrome, it has been noticed and detected in different organs. A number of research have proven affections within the circulatory system, the place the virus damages the membrane that covers the within of the center and blood vessels, often known as the endothelium. The right circulation of blood within the smallest vessels of our physique is of essential significance. The branching community of those microvessels is the end-point of the circulatory system, the place the oxygen switch and the transport and alternate of warmth, vitamins or waste merchandise happen.

To additional examine how the illness might have an effect on microcirculation, a world group of researchers put collectively a medical examine to watch the endothelium of COVID-19 sufferers that had been admitted to completely different intensive care models (ICUs) all over the world. They did this through the use of a non-invasive, moveable, wi-fi, battery-operated near-infrared optical machine to look at microvascular well being.

After many months of information gathering and evaluation, the researchers have printed their preliminary leads to the journal Crucial Care, the place they’ve supplied knowledge for the monitoring of wholesome adults versus sufferers with acute respiratory misery syndrome brought on by COVID-19, in six completely different hospitals throughout Spain, Mexico and Brazil.

Utilizing NIRS to watch the microcirculation

The researchers used near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to check the native oxygen saturation on the tissues and the blood and the hemoglobin focus. In addition they assessed the severity of the illness within the COVID-19 sufferers.

The clinicians first positioned the NIRS probe on the forearm of the individual. Afterwards, they carried out a vascular occlusion check by inserting a blood strain cuff and inflating it, briefly stopping the blood from flowing by way of the blood vessels within the arm. They obtained measurements of the oxygen saturation, the metabolic charge of the tissue and the microvascular reactivity -how the tissue responded to the occlusion-.

After gathering knowledge from greater than 100 people, the group discovered alterations in extreme COVID-19 sufferers relating to the method of circulation contained in the tissue microvessels. They noticed that, relating to the respiratory involvement, the diploma of these alterations was straight related to the severity of the illness. The examine accentuates the position of the endothelial perform, highlighting the connection between its dysfunction and the severity of the illness. With these observations, the researchers counsel that monitoring the endothelial perform might be helpful when predicting the course of COVID-19 and different medical situations.

“These preliminary outcomes are extremely related in a number of facets”, says Dr. Jaume Mesquida, a clinician on the Parc Taulí Hospital. “First, we have now bolstered the concept the extreme types of COVID-19 are a systemic illness that impacts the microvessels of the physique. Second, we established that the severity of the illness, primarily decided by the pulmonary involvement, correlates with the impairment of the microvascular response within the peripheral skeletal muscle. And at last, we will non-invasively monitor this microvascular impairment. Such findings are promising since a non-invasive software could be useful within the early detection of probably important sufferers. Additionally, it should assist us in choosing and monitoring the response to novel therapies focusing on the microvessels in the midst of COVID-19.”

A world initiative

The group gathers researchers and clinicians from a number of establishments in 4 completely different nations. Researchers from ICFO – (coordinators of the project-), the Institute of Physics of the Campinas College in Brazil, and the College of Texas Southwestern joined forces with clinicians from the Parc Taulí Hospital Universitari, the Parc Salut Mar Hospital, the Hospital Normal de México, the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona and the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron.

Researchers from the ICFO Medical Optics group Lorenzo Cortese, Umut Karadeniz and Marta Zanoletti have been led by ICREA Prof. at ICFO Turgut Durduran. As Prof. Durduran factors out, “These findings show that near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) might have an essential position in fulfilling an unmet want on the intensive care models, for sufferers with COVID-19, ARDS, sepsis and different situations. Moreover, it helps our speculation that extra superior types of NIRS with the newest applied sciences which are being developed within the European initiative VASCOVID might have a big medical impression.”

Exploring the potential impression

Most of the companions of this initiative are additionally collaborating within the H2020 venture VASCOVID[2], which is carefully linked to the HEMOCOVID-19 medical trial. VASCOVID goals to develop a devoted machine not solely to enhance the accuracy and precision of the present techniques but additionally so as to add different biomarkers, as blood movement, that could be helpful in the identical instances.

In parallel, ICFO and UTSW are supported by the US Nationwide Institutes of Well being[3] to develop a devoted low-cost machine to watch microvascular reactivity whereas minimizing the impression of superficial adipose tissue in sufferers with acute respiratory misery syndrome, with or with out SARS-COV2 an infection.

Moreover, the Nationwide Ministry of Well being and La MaratoTV3 assist different initiatives to discover the potential impression past sufferers present process intensive-care.

This examine can be a part of The Barcelona Medical Photonics Community BMPN, a community dedicated to selling the medical analysis and improvement actions primarily based on photonics being carried out within the Barcelona area.


[1] Knowledge in response to Worldometer

[2] The VASCOVID venture is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 analysis and innovation program underneath grant settlement No101016087.

[3] NIBIB R21EB031261.


Extra info

Reference: Mesquida, J., Caballer, A., Cortese, L. et al. Peripheral microcirculatory alterations are related to the severity of acute respiratory misery syndrome in COVID-19 sufferers admitted to intermediate respiratory and intensive care modelsCrit Care 25, 381 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13054-021-03803-2


Hyperlink to the HEMOCOVID-19 venture and the Hemocovid-19 Video

Hyperlink to the Medical Optics group at ICFO

Hyperlink to the Consorci Corporació Sanitària Parc Taulí


The members of the HEMOCOVID-19 Consortium are listed as: ICFO (Spain): Turgut Durduran, Marco Pagliazzi, Lorenzo Cortese, Marta Zanoletti, and Umut Karadeniz. Parc Taulí Hospital Universitari (Spain): Jaume Mesquida, Alba Caballer, Sara Nogales, Cristina Espinal, Guillem Gruartmoner, Edgar Cortés. Hospital del Mar-IMIM (Spain): Judith Marin Corral, Puri Pérez Terán, Clara Vilà, Lucía Picazo. Hospital Vall D’Hebron (Spain): Ricard Ferrer, Marina García De Acilu, Luis Chiscano, Abraham Mera. Hospital Clínic de Barcelona (Spain): Pedro Castro, Adrián Téllez, Sara Fernández, Ana Matas, Fernando Fuentes. Centre de Recerca Matemàtica (Spain): Isabel Serra, David Romero, Francesc Font, Tim Myers. College of Texas Southwestern Medical Heart (USA): David R. Busch, Siddharth Dave, Sreekanth Cheruku, Christopher Choi, Peiman Lahsaei, DaiWai Olson. Hospital Normal De México Dr. Eduardo Liceaga (Mexico): Argelia Pérez Pacheco, Raúl Serrano Loyola, Verónica Carbajal Robles, Rosa María Quispe Siccha, Enrique Santillan Aguayo, Melvin Parada Guzmán, Fèlix Hernández Monte De Oca, Diana Pineda Vasquez. Hospital Das Clínicas College of Sao Paulo Medical College (Brazil): Leandro Utino Taniguchi, Bruno Adler Maccagnan Pinheiro Besen, Pedro Vitale Mendes. Institute of Physics, College of Campinas (Brazil): Rickson Coelho Mesquita, Rodrigo Menezes Forti, Andrés Fabián Quiroga Soto. Scientific Hospital, College of Campinas (Brazil): Antonio Luis Eiras Falcão, Laís Bacchin de Oliveira, Lilian Elisabete Bernardes Delazari , Gabriela Lívio Emídio, Lígia dos Santos Roceto Ratti. Bruna do Nascimento, Ana Lucia Cavallaro Barauna Lima. BioPixS Ltd (Eire): Sanathana Konugolu Venakata Sekar, Claudia Guadagno 


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