Apocalyptic COVID-19 mortality and BMI: a J-shape relationship? BMI and COVID-19 mortality

Apocalyptic COVID-19 mortality and BMI: a J-shape relationship?

BMI and COVID-19 mortality


  • Fulvio Lauretani a:1:{s:5:"en_US";s:19:"University of Parma";}
  • Ferdinando Lauretani
  • Marcello Maggio


BMI, COVID-19, Mortality, Frail, Older persons


BMI could be considered the strongest key element for defining “frail/vulnerable” persons during SARS-COV-2 infection. National authorities should be taking into account these data for planning future preventive measured and vaccination and avoiding an increase of mortality due to COVID-19 infection.

BMI is an expression of obesity and one of phenotypic criteria of undernutrition. Both of these conditions are really relevant worldwide, suggesting the need of implementing the knowledge on the importance of nutrition for general health and also for preventing severe forms of COVID-19 infection.


Report of clustering pneumonia of unknown etiology in Wuhan City. Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, 2019. http://wjw.wuhan.gov.cn/front/web/showDetail/2019123108989 .

Zhu N, Zhang D, Wang W, et al. A Novel Coronavirus from Patients with Pneumonia in China, 2019. N Engl J Med 2020; 382: 727-33.

World Health Organization. Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it. Available online: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/technical-guidance/naming-the-coronavirus-disease-(covid-2019)-and-the-virus-that-causes-it

Ross JS. Covid-19, open science, and the CVD-COVID-UK initiative. BMJ 2021;373:n898.

Patterson GE, McIntyre KM, Clough HE, Rushton J. Societal Impacts of Pandemics: Comparing COVID-19 With History to Focus Our Response. Front Public Health 2021;9:630449. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2021.630449.

Lauretani F, Ravazzoni G, Roberti MF, et al. Assessment and treatment of older individuals with COVID 19 multi-system disease: Clinical and ethical implications. Acta Biomed 2020; 91:150-168.

Abu-Raya B, Migliori GB, O'Ryan M, et al. Coronavirus Disease-19: An Interim Evidence Synthesis of the World Association for Infectious Diseases and Immunological Disorders (Waidid). Front Med (Lausanne) 2020;7:572485. doi: 10.3389/fmed.2020.572485.

Fajgenbaum DC, June CH. Cytokine Storm. N Engl J Med 2020;383:2255-2273.

Wu F, Zhao S, Yu B, et al. A new coronavirus associated with human respiratory disease in China. Nature 2020; 579:265-9.

Huang C, Wang Y, Li X, et al. Clinical features of patients infected with 2019 novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China. Lancet 2020; 395:497-506.

Zhao J, Mangalam AK, Channappanavar R, et al. Airway Memory CD4(+) T Cells Mediate Protective Immunity against Emerging Respiratory Coronaviruses. Immunity 2016;44:1379-91.

Coleman CM, Sisk JM, Halasz G, et al. CD8+ T Cells and Macrophages Regulate Pathogenesis in a Mouse Model of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. J Virol 2016;91: e01825-16.

Zhao J, Alshukairi AN, Baharoon SA, et al. Recovery from the Middle East respiratory syndrome is associated with antibody and T-cell responses. Sci Immunol 2017;2:eaan5393.

Wang SF, Chen KH, Chen M, et al. Human-leukocyte antigen class I Cw 1502 and class II DR 0301 genotypes are associated with resistance to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) infection. Viral Immunol 2011;24: 421-6.

Jordan RE, Adab P, Cheng KK. Covid-19: risk factors for severe disease and death. BMJ 2020;368:m1198.

Gao M, Piernas C, Astbury NM, et al. Associations between body-mass index and COVID-19 severity in 6·9 million people in England: a prospective, community-based, cohort study. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 2021;9:350-359.

Werida RH, El-Gharbawy NM, Mostafa TM. Circulating IL-6, clusterin and irisin in obese subjects with different grades of obesity: association with insulin resistance and sexual dimorphism. Arch Endocrinol Metab 2021; 24:2359-3997000000336.

McCarthy K, Hewitt J, Myint PK, Quinn T, Carter B. Frailty and mortality in patients with COVID-19 - Authors' reply. Lancet Public Health 2020;5:e582.

Cederholm T, Jensen GL, Correia MITD, et al. GLIM criteria for the diagnosis of malnutrition - A consensus report from the global clinical nutrition community. Clin Nutr 2019;38:1-9.

Fedele D, De Francesco A, Riso S, Collo A. Obesity, malnutrition, and trace element deficiency in the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic: An overview. Nutrition. 2021 Jan;81:111016. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2020.111016.







How to Cite

Lauretani F, Lauretani F, Maggio M. Apocalyptic COVID-19 mortality and BMI: a J-shape relationship? BMI and COVID-19 mortality. Acta Biomed [Internet]. 2022 May 11 [cited 2024 Jul. 12];93(2):e2022200. Available from: https://www.mattioli1885journals.com/index.php/actabiomedica/article/view/11936