Immunological manipulations to lessen the severity of COVID-19

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

The pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has placed an unprecedented burden on healthcare systems around the world. In patients who experience severe disease, acute respiratory distress is often accompanied by a pathological immune reaction, sometimes referred to as ‘cytokine storm’. One hallmark feature of the profound inflammatory state seen in patients with COVID-19 who succumb to pneumonia and hypoxia is marked elevation of serum cytokines, especially interferon gamma, tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin 17 (IL-17), interleukin 8 (IL-8) and interleukin 6 (IL-6). Initial experience from the outbreaks in Italy, China and the USA has anecdotally demonstrated improved outcomes for critically ill patients with COVID-19 with the administration of cytokine-modulatory therapies, especially anti-IL-6 agents. Although ongoing trials are investigating anti-IL-6 therapies, access to these therapies is a concern, especially as the numbers of cases worldwide continue to climb. An immunology-informed approach may help identify alternative agents to modulate the pathological inflammation seen in patients with COVID-19. Drawing on extensive experience administering these and other immune-modulating therapies, the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer offers this perspective on potential alternatives to anti-IL-6 that may also warrant consideration for management of the systemic inflammatory response and pulmonary compromise that can be seen in patients with severe COVID-19.

Read the full article published originally in the Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer

COVID-19 News & Updates

Get the latest COVID-19 news, important information and updates from health care providers and experts.

Initial results, safety data from clinical trial shared during international medical conference
A recent Hear Me Now podcast examines research about long COVID and what the evidence shows.
Providence was recognized by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA) for our commitment to scaling telehealth services throughout the pandemic and providing services to millions of patients.
Sherene Schlegel, Executive Director of Telehealth Clinical Operations spoke at a mHealth Intelligence panel on digital health literacy, in particular, among underserved populations.