More than a key-the pathological roles of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in COVID-19 related cardiac injury

Sports Med Health Sci. 2023 Mar 30. doi: 10.1016/j.smhs.2023.03.004. Online ahead of print.


Cardiac injury is common in hospitalized coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients and cardiac abnormalities have been observed in a significant number of recovered COVID-19 patients, portending long-term health issues for millions of infected individuals. To better understand how Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2, CoV-2 for short) damages the heart, it is critical to fully comprehend the biology of CoV-2 encoded proteins, each of which may play multiple pathological roles. For example, CoV-2 spike glycoprotein (CoV-2-S) not only engages angiotensin converting enzyme II (ACE2) to mediate virus infection but also directly activates immune responses. In this work, the goal is to review the known pathological roles of CoV-2-S in the cardiovascular system, thereby shedding lights on the pathogenesis of COVID-19 related cardiac injury.

Keywords: COVID-19; Cardiovascular disease; Immune responses; Spike protein.

Publication types

  • Review