The correlation between viral clearance and biochemical outcomes of 94 COVID-19 infected discharged patients

Inflamm Res. 2020 Jun;69(6):599-606. doi: 10.1007/s00011-020-01342-0. Epub 2020 Mar 29.


Objective: This study aims to evaluate the correlation between viral clearance and blood biochemical index of 94 discharged patients with COVID-19 infection in Shenzhen Third People's Hospital, enrolled from Jan 5 to Feb 13, 2020.

Methods: The clinical and laboratory findings were extracted from the electronic medical records of the patients. The data were analysed and reviewed by a trained team of physicians. Information on clinical signs and symptoms, medical treatment, virus clearance, and laboratory parameters including interleukin 6 (IL-6) and C-reactive protein were collected.

Results: COVID-19 mRNA clearance ratio was identified significantly correlated with the decline of serum creatine kinase (CK) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels. Furthermore, COVID-19 mRNA clearance time was positively correlated with the length of hospital stay in patients treated with either IFN-α + lopinavir/ritonavir or IFN-α + lopinavir/ritonavir + ribavirin.

Conclusions: Therapeutic regimens of IFN-α + lopinavir/ritonavir and IFN-α + lopinavir/ritonavir + ribavirin might be beneficial for treatment of COVID-19. Serum LDH or CK decline may predict a favorable response to treatment of COVID-19 infection.

Keywords: CK; COVID-19; Clearance ratio; LDH.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • COVID-19
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • China
  • Coronavirus Infections / blood*
  • Coronavirus Infections / drug therapy
  • Coronavirus Infections / physiopathology
  • Coronavirus Infections / virology*
  • Creatine Kinase / blood
  • Drug Combinations
  • Humans
  • Interferon-alpha / therapeutic use
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / blood
  • Lopinavir / therapeutic use
  • Middle Aged
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / blood*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / drug therapy
  • Pneumonia, Viral / physiopathology
  • Pneumonia, Viral / virology*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • RNA, Viral / analysis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Ritonavir / therapeutic use
  • Young Adult


  • Drug Combinations
  • Interferon-alpha
  • RNA, Viral
  • lopinavir-ritonavir drug combination
  • Lopinavir
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase
  • Creatine Kinase
  • Ritonavir