Serial cardiac biomarkers for risk stratification of patients with COVID-19

Kwaku Tawiah, Laurel Jackson, Catherine Omosule, Claire Ballman, Bobby Shahideh, Mitchell G. Scott, Gillian Murtagh, Christopher W. Farnsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objectives: Several studies have demonstrated an association between elevated cardiac biomarkers and adverse outcomes in patients with COVID-19. However, the prognostic and predictive capability of a multimarker panel in a prospectively collected, diverse “all-comers” COVID-19 population has not been fully elucidated. Design & methods: We prospectively assessed high sensitivity cardiac troponin I (hsTnI), NT-pro B-type Natriuretic Peptide (NT-proBNP), Galectin-3 (Gal-3), and procalcitonin (PCT) in 4,282 serial samples from 358 patients admitted with symptomatic, RT-PCR confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. Outcomes examined were 30-day in-hospital mortality and requirement for intubation within 10 days. Results: Baseline hsTnI had the highest AUC for predicting 30-day mortality (0.81; 95% CI, 0.73–0.88), followed by NT-proBNP (0.80; 0.74–0.86), PCT (0.77; 0.70–0.84), and Gal-3 (0.68; 0.60–0.76). HsTnI < 3.5 ng/L at baseline identified patients at low risk for in-hospital mortality (NPV 95.9%, sensitivity 97.3%) and 10-day intubation (NPV 90.4%, sensitivity 88.5%). Continuous, log-2 increases in troponin concentration were associated with reduced survival (p < 0.001) on Kaplan-Meier curves and increased risk of 30-day mortality: HR 1.26 (1.16–1.37) in univariate and 1.19 (1.03–1.4) in multivariate models. Time-varying doubling of concentrations of hsTnI and Gal-3 were associated with increased risk of 30-day mortality (adjusted HR 1.21, 1.06–1.4, and 1.92, 1.40–2.6). Conclusion: HsTnI, NT-proBNP, Gal-3, and PCT are elevated at baseline in patients that have worse outcomes from COVID-19. HsTnI was the only independent predictor of 30-day mortality and intubation. Time-varying, doubling in hsTnI and Gal-3 further aided in prognostication of adverse outcomes. These results support the use of hsTnI for triaging patients with COVID-19.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-32
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Biochemistry
StatePublished - Sep 2022


  • Biomarkers
  • COVID-19
  • High sensitivity troponin


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