Role of Enhancing Aerobic Capacity in Countering COVID-19-induced Liver Injury in Elderlies

Ayman A Mohamed, Ahmed A Abdalla, Yih-Kuen Jan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


COVID-19 is still a world disaster; however, its vaccination is globally available. Liver and gastrointestinal disturbances occur in patients infected with COVID-19 at varying incidences. Aging decreases the functions of the liver. Thus, the elderly have a weaker response to the COVID-19 virus. The COVID-19 virus affects the liver directly through direct and indirect mechanisms. It directly affects the renin-angiotensin system or indirectly causes sepsis, uncontrolled immune reactions, drug-related hepatic injury, and cytokine storm. Also, COVID-19 vaccines and anti-drugs have adverse effects on the liver too. Thus, this review explores the effect of enhancing aerobic capacity as a nonpharmacological intervention on decreasing COVID- 19-induced liver injury. Enhancing aerobic capacity decreases COVID-19-induced liver injury through the following: 1) downregulating systemic and tissue ACE/ANG II/AT1R axis, upregulating ACE2/ANG 1-7/Mas axis, and moving the renin-angiotensin system to the direction of the ACE2/ANG (1-7)/Mas axis, 2) Improving mitochondrial function and oxygenation to body and lung tissues, causing a decrease in harmful oxidative reactions, 3) Increasing the processing of accumulated free radicals and inhibiting the acute respiratory distress syndrome, 4) Acting as an antioxidant to protect the liver from oxidative stress, 5) Increasing the effect of antiviral drugs and COVID-19 vaccines, which improves the function of immune biomarkers, decreases the viral load, and increases the body's defense against the virus, 6) Decreasing coagulation abnormalities and thrombosis. In conclusion, enhancing aerobic capacity may be an efficient nonpharmacological intervention to decrease COVID-19-induced liver injury in elderlies and regenerate the liver to its normal status after being infected by the COVID-19 virus. It also helps to strengthen the body's immunity for better effects of both COVID-19 vaccination and drugs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)418-429
Number of pages12
JournalEndocrine, Metabolic and Immune Disorders - Drug Targets
Issue number4
Early online dateNov 1 2023
StatePublished - 2024


  • COVID-19
  • liver injury
  • Aerobic
  • thrombosis
  • immunity
  • oxidative stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Immunology and Allergy


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