In Journal of medical virology
The COVID-19 pandemic, caused by rapidly evolving variants of SARS-CoV-2, continues to be a global health threat. SARS-CoV-2 infection symptoms often intersect with other nonsevere respiratory infections, making early diagnosis challenging. There is an urgent need for early diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers to predict severity and reduce mortality when a sudden outbreak occurs. This study implemented a novel approach of integrating bioinformatics and machine learning algorithms over publicly available clinical COVID-19 transcriptome datasets. The robust seven-gene biomarker identified through this analysis can not only discriminate SARS-CoV-2 associated acute respiratory illness (ARI) from other types of ARIs but also can discriminate severe COVID-19 patients from nonsevere COVID-19 patients. Validation of the 7-gene biomarker in an independent blood transcriptome dataset of longitudinal analysis of COVID-19 patients across various stages of the disease showed that the dysregulation of the identified biomarkers during severe disease is restored during recovery, showing their prognostic potential. The blood biomarkers identified in this study can serve as potential diagnostic candidates and help reduce COVID-19-associated mortality. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Krishnamoorthy Pandikannan, Raj Athira S, Kumar Himanshu
Blood biomarker, Machine learning, Meta-analysis, SARS-CoV-2, Transcriptome