Early low-dose tocilizumab may prevent hyper-inflammation and death in COVID-19

A retrospective cohort study of patients with COVID-19 pneumonia treated with anti-interleukin-6 (IL-6) monoclonal antibody tocilizumab showed a significant improvement in survival rate, according to a publication in EClinicalMedicine.

The analysis included 158 hospitalised COVID-19 patients at the early stage of respiratory failure. All patients were being treated with the standard care protocol: hydroxychloroquine 400 mg daily, lopinavir 800 mg plus ritonavir 200 mg daily. Researchers compared survival rate and clinical status in a cohort of patients who received additional treatment with tocilizumab once (n=90) with a retrospective cohort of patients who did not receive tocilizumab (n=68).

Mortality in the cohort that received low dose tocilizumab (400 mg intravenous or 324 mg subcutaneous) was 7.7 per cent, while in the standard treatment group, mortality was 50 per cent. No tocilizumab-related infections and/or side effects were observed, and both intravenous and subcutaneous administration routes were equally effective and safe.

This study shows that early administration of low dose tocilizumab modulates excessive hyper-inflammation and reduces mortality caused by COVID-19. In addition to the safety profile and ease of administration, these results suggest that tocilizumab deserves consideration in controlled trials for the treatment of COVID-19. 

Эх сурвалж: De Rossi N, Scarpazza C, Filippini C, Cordioli C, Rasia S, Mancinelli CR, et al. Early use of low dose tocilizumab in patients with COVID-19: A retrospective cohort study with a complete follow-up. EClinicalMedicine 2020:100459. Published Online 17 July 2020. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eclinm.2020.100459.

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