Lung Expression of Macrophage Markers CD68 and CD163, Angiotensin Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2), and Caspase-3 in COVID-19.
Medicina (Kaunas, Lithuania)
Background and Objectives: The coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) damages all systems and organs. Yet, to a greater extent, the lungs are particularly involved, due to the formation of diffuse exudative inflammation in the form of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) with next progression to pulmonary fibrosis. SARS-associated lung damage is accompanied by the pronounced activation of mononuclear cells, damage of the alveoli and microvessels, and the development of organized pneumonia. To study the expression of macrophage markers (CD68 and CD163), angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE2), and caspase-3 on the results of two fatal clinical observations of COVID-19. Materials and Methods: In both clinical cases, the female patients died from complications of confirmed COVID-19. Conventional morphological and immunohistochemical methods were used. Results: There was an acute exudative hemorrhagic pneumonia with the formation of hyaline membranes, focal organization of fibrin, stromal sclerosis, stasis, and thrombus formation in the lung vessels. Signs such as the formation of hyaline membranes, organization, and fibrosis were more pronounced in severe disease activity. The activation of CD68+/CD163+ macrophages could cause cell damage at an early stage of pneumonia development, and subsequently cause fibrotic changes in lung tissue. ACE2 expression in lung tissue was not detected in severe pneumonia, while in moderate pneumonia, weak expression was noted in individual cells of the alveolar epithelium and vascular endothelium. Conclusions: This finding could show the dependence of ACE2 expression on the severity of the inflammatory process in the lungs. The expression of caspase-3 was more pronounced in severe pneumonia.
Ziablitsev DS, Kozyk M, Strubchevska K, Dyadyk OO, Ziablitsev SV. Lung expression of macrophage markers CD68 and CD163, angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), and caspase-3 in COVID-19. Medicina (Kaunas). 2023 Apr 6;59(4):714. doi: 10.3390/medicina59040714. PMID: 37109672; PMCID: PMC10144424.