Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RAs) have been hypothesized to exert beneficial effects on COVID-19 outcomes due to their anti-inflammatory properties. In our COVID-19 ward, patients admitted for severe interstitial bilateral pneumonia due to SARS-COV2 infection and having type 2 diabetes (T2D) or in-hospital hyperglycemia (IHH) were treated with GLP-1 RAs in addition to standard therapy according to usual care. Aim of the present study was to evaluate if GLP-1 RAs therapy was related with outcomes. A retrospective analysis was performed to assess if the GLP1-RAs were associated with a lower risk of a composite outcome (death or admission to intensive care unit) . During the COVID-19 pandemics, 135 patients were admitted (61.5% men, age 66.3±13.7 years, 49.6% with T2D and 50.4% with IHH) , of whom 23.1% initiated GLP1-RA during the hospitalization (39.1% of patients with T2D and 7.6% of patients with IHH) . Almost all patients were treated with once-weekly subcutaneous semaglutide, while dulaglutide was administered in 2 cases. Overall, 26.3% of patients not treated vs. 7.1% of patients treated with GLP1-RAs reached the composite outcome (p=0.03) . At multivariate analysis adjusted for age, gender, T2D, history of cardio/cerebrovascular disease, hypertension, pulmonary disease, and dementia, the use of GLP-1 RAs was associated with a reduced risk of composite outcome of 80% (OR 0.20; 95% confidence intervals 0.04-0.95) . Dementia resulted the only other independent correlate of the outcome. These preliminary results suggest that the addition of GLP1-RAs to standard care during hospitalization for SARS-CoV2 infection could play a role in improving clinical outcomes in patients with COVID-19 and T2D or IHH: at the best of our knowledge this is the first study showing such an effect when GLP1-RAs were started during hospitalization.


V. Provenzano: Board Member; Lilly Diabetes, Novo Nordisk, Consultant; AstraZeneca. D. Brancato: None. M. Fleres: None. F. Provenzano: None. A. R. Salvaggio: None. A. Scorsone: None.

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