Vitamin D association with macrophage-derived cytokines in polycystic ovary syndrome: an enhanced risk of COVID-19 infection?
Background: Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) often have vitamin D deficiency, a known risk factor for severe COVID-19 disease. Alveolar macrophage-derived cytokines contribute to the inflammation underlying pulmonary disease in COVID-19. We sought to determine if basal macrophage activation, as a risk factor for COVID-19 infection, was present in PCOS and, if so, was further enhanced by vitamin D deficiency.
Methods: A cross-sectional study in 99 PCOS and 68 control women who presented sequentially. Plasma levels of a macrophage-derived cytokine panel were determined by Slow Off-rate Modified Aptamer (SOMA)-scan plasma protein measurement. Vitamin D was measured by tandem mass spectroscopy.
Results: Vitamin D was lower in PCOS women (p<0.0001) and correlated negatively with body mass index (BMI) in PCOS (r=0.28, p=0.0046). Basal macrophage activation markers CXCL5, CD163 and MMP9 were elevated, whilst protective CD200 was decreased (p<0.05); changes in these variables were related to, and fully accounted for, by BMI. PCOS and control women were then stratified according to vitamin D concentration. Vitamin D deficiency was associated with decreased CD80 and IFN-γ in PCOS and IL-12 in both groups (p<0.05). These factors, important in initiating and maintaining the immune response, were again accounted for by BMI.
Conclusion: Basal macrophage activation was higher in PCOS with macrophage changes related with increased infection risk associating with vitamin D; all changes were BMI dependent, suggesting that obese PCOS with vitamin D deficiency may be at greater risk of more severe COVID-19 infection, but that it is obesity-related rather than an independent PCOS factor.
CommentsThe original article is available at https://www.frontiersin.org/
Published CitationMoin ASM, Sathyapalan T, Butler AE, Atkin SL. Vitamin D association with macrophage-derived cytokines in polycystic ovary syndrome: an enhanced risk of COVID-19 infection? Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2021;12:638621
Publication Date25 February 2021
- RCSI Bahrain
PublisherFrontiers Research Foundation
- Published Version (Version of Record)