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Investigation of the Correlation between Meteorin-Like Protein (Metrnl) and Thiol Balance in COVID-19 Patients by Eyyup S. Seyhanli, Ozlem Guler, Ibrahim H. Yasak, Ismail Koyuncu

Background: The aim of this study is to investigate the correlation between serum meteorin-like protein levels and thiol/disulfide balance in patients with COVID-19.
Methods: This is a prospective case-control study including 52 PCR-confirmed COVID-19 patients (group 1) and 34 controls (group 2). The present study included patients aged 18 and older who were admitted to the emergency department with symptoms of COVID-19. Meteorin-like protein levels were analyzed using the YL Biont ELISA Kits protocol. Thiol/disulfide balance was studied using the spectrophotometric method.
Results: There were 35 males and 17 females in group 1, and 20 males and 14 females in group 2. The groups were similar in terms of gender and age (p > 0.05 and p > 0.05, respectively). Meteorin-like protein was significantly lower in group 1 (p < 0.001). There was no difference between the two groups in terms of total thiol level (p > 0.05). Disulfide, disulfide/native thiol ratio, and disulfide/total thiol ratio were significantly higher in group 1 (p < 0.001, p < 0.001, and p < 0.001, respectively). Native thiol was higher in group 2 (p = 0.002). Native thiol/total thiol ratio was significantly higher in group 2 (p < 0.001). Disulfide, SS/SH%, SS/TT%, and SH/TT% parameters had remarkably high sensitivity (98.1% for them all) and specificity (85.3% for disulfide and 100% for SS/SH%, SS/TT%, and SH/TT%) in differentiating patients and healthy subjects.
Conclusions: In this study, thiol/disulfide balance, which is an indicator of oxidative stress, was disturbed in the disulfide direction and meteorin-like protein was significantly lower in patients with COVID-19. Thiol/disulfide balance and metrnl may play a role in the pathogenesis of COVID-19.

DOI: 10.7754/Clin.Lab.2021.201131