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Geroscience ; 43(3): 1093-1112, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1499503


We are in the midst of the global pandemic. Though acute respiratory coronavirus (SARS-COV2) that leads to COVID-19 infects people of all ages, severe symptoms and mortality occur disproportionately in older adults. Geroscience interventions that target biological aging could decrease risk across multiple age-related diseases and improve outcomes in response to infectious disease. This offers hope for a new host-directed therapeutic approach that could (i) improve outcomes following exposure or shorten treatment regimens; (ii) reduce the chronic pathology associated with the infectious disease and subsequent comorbidity, frailty, and disability; and (iii) promote development of immunological memory that protects against relapse or improves response to vaccination. We review the possibility of this approach by examining available evidence in metformin: a generic drug with a proven safety record that will be used in a large-scale multicenter clinical trial. Though rigorous translational research and clinical trials are needed to test this empirically, metformin may improve host immune defenses and confer protection against long-term health consequences of infectious disease, age-related chronic diseases, and geriatric syndromes.

COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases , Metformin , Aged , Communicable Diseases/drug therapy , Humans , Metformin/therapeutic use , Multicenter Studies as Topic , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2