Demographic and clinical biochemistry data were collected following standard protocol during the 72 h after the hospital admission into the COVID unit. Biochemical parameters were determined in a pre-validated equipment (autoanalyzer COBAS® Integra 400 Plus, Roche Diagnostics). Briefly, blood samples were individually collected into pyrogen-free tubes (Vacutainer; BD Diagnostics) at room temperature. Serum was obtained by centrifugation of collection tubes at 3500 rpm for 10 min and stored at −20 °C until use. Serum levels of IL-6 were determined in duplicate by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) (Human IL-6 ELISA kit #BMS213-2, Bender MedSystems, Vienna, Austria), according to the instructions of the manufacturers. Raw data were analyzed with GraphPad Prism software.

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