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1.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(11): e2136246, 2021 11 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1540039

ABSTRACT

Importance: Convalescent plasma (CP) has been generally unsuccessful in preventing worsening of respiratory failure or death in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia. Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of CP plus standard therapy (ST) vs ST alone in preventing worsening respiratory failure or death in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia. Design, Setting, and Participants: This prospective, open-label, randomized clinical trial enrolled (1:1 ratio) hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia to receive CP plus ST or ST alone between July 15 and December 8, 2020, at 27 clinical sites in Italy. Hospitalized adults with COVID-19 pneumonia and a partial pressure of oxygen-to-fraction of inspired oxygen (Pao2/Fio2) ratio between 350 and 200 mm Hg were eligible. Interventions: Patients in the experimental group received intravenous high-titer CP (≥1:160, by microneutralization test) plus ST. The volume of infused CP was 200 mL given from 1 to a maximum of 3 infusions. Patients in the control group received ST, represented by remdesivir, glucocorticoids, and low-molecular weight heparin, according to the Agenzia Italiana del Farmaco recommendations. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcome was a composite of worsening respiratory failure (Pao2/Fio2 ratio <150 mm Hg) or death within 30 days from randomization. Results: Of the 487 randomized patients (241 to CP plus ST; 246 to ST alone), 312 (64.1%) were men; the median (IQR) age was 64 (54.0-74.0) years. The modified intention-to-treat population included 473 patients. The primary end point occurred in 59 of 231 patients (25.5%) treated with CP and ST and in 67 of 239 patients (28.0%) who received ST (odds ratio, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.59-1.33; P = .54). Adverse events occurred more frequently in the CP group (12 of 241 [5.0%]) compared with the control group (4 of 246 [1.6%]; P = .04). Conclusions and Relevance: In patients with moderate to severe COVID-19 pneumonia, high-titer anti-SARS-CoV-2 CP did not reduce the progression to severe respiratory failure or death within 30 days. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04716556.

4.
J Transl Med ; 18(1): 405, 2020 10 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477432

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Tocilizumab blocks pro-inflammatory activity of interleukin-6 (IL-6), involved in pathogenesis of pneumonia the most frequent cause of death in COVID-19 patients. METHODS: A multicenter, single-arm, hypothesis-driven trial was planned, according to a phase 2 design, to study the effect of tocilizumab on lethality rates at 14 and 30 days (co-primary endpoints, a priori expected rates being 20 and 35%, respectively). A further prospective cohort of patients, consecutively enrolled after the first cohort was accomplished, was used as a secondary validation dataset. The two cohorts were evaluated jointly in an exploratory multivariable logistic regression model to assess prognostic variables on survival. RESULTS: In the primary intention-to-treat (ITT) phase 2 population, 180/301 (59.8%) subjects received tocilizumab, and 67 deaths were observed overall. Lethality rates were equal to 18.4% (97.5% CI: 13.6-24.0, P = 0.52) and 22.4% (97.5% CI: 17.2-28.3, P < 0.001) at 14 and 30 days, respectively. Lethality rates were lower in the validation dataset, that included 920 patients. No signal of specific drug toxicity was reported. In the exploratory multivariable logistic regression analysis, older age and lower PaO2/FiO2 ratio negatively affected survival, while the concurrent use of steroids was associated with greater survival. A statistically significant interaction was found between tocilizumab and respiratory support, suggesting that tocilizumab might be more effective in patients not requiring mechanical respiratory support at baseline. CONCLUSIONS: Tocilizumab reduced lethality rate at 30 days compared with null hypothesis, without significant toxicity. Possibly, this effect could be limited to patients not requiring mechanical respiratory support at baseline. Registration EudraCT (2020-001110-38); clinicaltrials.gov (NCT04317092).


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Betacoronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 , Cohort Studies , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Mortality , Off-Label Use , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome , Validation Studies as Topic
5.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-291332

ABSTRACT

Inflammatory burden is associated with COVID-19 severity and outcomes. Residual computed tomography (CT) lung abnormalities have been reported after COVID-19. The aim was to evaluate the association between inflammatory burden during COVID-19 and residual lung CT abnormalities collected on follow-up CT scans performed 2–3 and 6–7 months after COVID-19, in severe COVID-19 pneumonia survivors. C-reactive protein (CRP) curves describing inflammatory burden during the clinical course were built, and CRP peaks, velocities of increase, and integrals were calculated. Other putative determinants were age, sex, mechanical ventilation, lowest PaO2/FiO2 ratio, D-dimer peak, and length of hospital stay (LOS). Of the 259 included patients (median age 65 years;30.5% females), 202 (78%) and 100 (38.6%) had residual, predominantly non-fibrotic, abnormalities at 2-3 and 6-7 months, respectively. In age- and sex-adjusted models, best CRP predictors for residual abnormalities were CRP peak (odds ratio [OR] for one standard deviation [SD] increase=1.79;95% confidence interval [CI]=1.23-2.62) at 2-3 months and CRP integral (OR for one SD increase=2.24;95%CI=1.53-3.28) at 6-7 months. Hence, inflammation is associated with short- and medium-term lung damage in COVID-19. Other severity measures, including mechanical ventilation and LOS, but not D-dimer, were mediators of the relationship between CRP and residual abnormalities.

6.
Rheumatology (Oxford) ; 60(SI): SI25-SI36, 2021 10 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462486

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To ascertain if the use of hydroxychloroquine(HCQ)/cloroquine(CLQ) and other conventional DMARDs (cDMARDs) and rheumatic diseases per se may be associated with COVID-19-related risk of hospitalization and mortality. METHODS: This case-control study nested within a cohort of cDMARD users was conducted in the Lombardy, Veneto, Tuscany and Lazio regions and Reggio Emilia province. Claims databases were linked to COVID-19 surveillance registries. The risk of COVID-19-related outcomes was estimated using a multivariate conditional logistic regression analysis comparing HCQ/CLQ vs MTX, vs other cDMARDs and vs non-use of these drugs. The presence of rheumatic diseases vs their absence in a non-nested population was investigated. RESULTS: A total of 1275 patients hospitalized due to COVID-19 were matched to 12 734 controls. Compared with recent use of MTX, no association between HCQ/CLQ monotherapy and COVID-19 hospitalization [odds ratio (OR) 0.83 (95% CI 0.69, 1.00)] or mortality [OR 1.19 (95% CI 0.85, 1.67)] was observed. A lower risk was found when comparing HCQ/CLQ use with the concomitant use of other cDMARDs and glucocorticoids. HCQ/CLQ was not associated with COVID-19 hospitalization as compared with non-use. An increased risk for recent use of either MTX monotherapy [OR 1.19 (95% CI 1.05, 1.34)] or other cDMARDs [OR 1.21 (95% CI 1.08, 1.36)] vs non-use was found. Rheumatic diseases were not associated with COVID-19-related outcomes. CONCLUSION: HCQ/CLQ use in rheumatic patients was not associated with a protective effect against COVID-19-related outcomes. The use of other cDMARDs was associated with an increased risk when compared with non-use and, if concomitantly used with glucocorticoids, also vs HCQ/CLQ, probably due to immunosuppressive action.


Subject(s)
Antirheumatic Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Rheumatic Diseases/drug therapy , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/mortality , Case-Control Studies , Drug Therapy, Combination , Female , Glucocorticoids/therapeutic use , Humans , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Odds Ratio , Population Surveillance , Rheumatic Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
7.
BioDrugs ; 35(6): 749-764, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1460522

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Biological drugs have improved the management of immune-mediated inflammatory diseases (IMIDs) despite being associated with important safety issues such as immunogenicity, infections, and malignancies in real-world settings. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to explore the potential of a large Italian multi-database distributed network for use in the postmarketing surveillance of biological drugs, including biosimilars, in patients with IMID. METHODS: A retrospective cohort study was conducted using 13 Italian regional claims databases during 2010-2019. A tailor-made R-based tool developed for distributed analysis of claims data using a study-specific common data model was customized for this study. We measured the yearly prevalence of biological drug users and the frequency of switches between originator and biosimilars for infliximab, etanercept, and adalimumab separately and stratified them by calendar year and region. We then calculated the cumulative number of users and person-years (PYs) of exposure to individual biological drugs approved for IMIDs. For a number of safety outcomes (e.g., severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 [SARS-COV-2] infection), we conducted a sample power calculation to estimate the PYs of exposure required to investigate their association with individual biological drugs approved for IMIDs, considering different strengths of association. RESULTS: From a total underlying population of almost 50 million inhabitants from 13 Italian regions, we identified 143,602 (0.3%) biological drug users, with a cumulative exposure of 507,745 PYs during the entire follow-up. The mean age ± standard deviation of biological drug users was 49.3 ± 16.3, with a female-to-male ratio of 1.2. The age-adjusted yearly prevalence of biological drug users increased threefold from 0.7 per 1000 in 2010 to 2.1 per 1000 in 2019. Overall, we identified 40,996 users of biosimilars of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α inhibitors (i.e., etanercept, adalimumab, and infliximab) in the years 2015-2019. Of these, 46% (N = 18,845) switched at any time between originator and biosimilars or vice versa. To investigate a moderate association (incidence rate ratio 2) between biological drugs approved for IMIDs and safety events of interest, such as optic neuritis (lowest background incidence rate 10.4/100,000 PYs) or severe infection (highest background incidence rate 4312/100,000 PYs), a total of 43,311 PYs and 104 PYs of exposure to individual biological drugs, respectively, would be required. As such, using this network, of 15 individual biological drugs approved for IMIDs, the association with those adverse events could be investigated for four (27%) and 14 (93%), respectively. CONCLUSION: The VALORE project multi-database network has access to data on more than 140,000 biological drug users (and > 0.5 million PYs) from 13 Italian regions during the years 2010-2019, which will be further expanded with the inclusion of data from other regions and more recent calendar years. Overall, the cumulated amount of person-time of exposure to biological drugs approved for IMIDs provides enough statistical power to investigate weak/moderate associations of almost all individual compounds and the most relevant safety outcomes. Moreover, this network may offer the opportunity to investigate the interchangeability of originator and biosimilars of several TNFα inhibitors in different therapeutic areas in real-world settings.


Subject(s)
Biosimilar Pharmaceuticals , COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care , Female , Humans , Infliximab/adverse effects , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
8.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 9(7)2021 Jul 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1317265

ABSTRACT

To investigate the association of the 2019-2020 influenza vaccine with prognosis of patients positive for SARS-CoV-2A, a large multi-database cohort study was conducted in four Italian regions (i.e., Lazio, Lombardy, Veneto, and Tuscany) and the Reggio Emilia province (Emilia-Romagna). More than 21 million adults were residing in the study area (42% of the population). We included 115,945 COVID-19 cases diagnosed during the first wave of the pandemic (February-May, 2020); 34.6% of these had been vaccinated against influenza. Three outcomes were considered: hospitalization, death, and intensive care unit (ICU) admission/death. The adjusted relative risk (RR) of being hospitalized in the vaccinated group when compared with the non-vaccinated group was 0.87 (95% CI: 0.86-0.88). This reduction in risk was not confirmed for death (RR = 1.04; 95% CI: 1.01-1.06), or for the combined outcome of ICU admission or death. In conclusion, our study, conducted on the vast majority of the population during the first wave of the pandemic in Italy, showed a 13% statistically significant reduction in the risk of hospitalization in some geographical areas and in the younger population. No impact of seasonal influenza vaccination on COVID-19 prognosis in terms of death and death or ICU admission was estimated.

9.
Euro Surveill ; 26(25)2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1288763

ABSTRACT

To assess the real-world impact of vaccines on COVID-19 related outcomes, we analysed data from over 7 million recipients of at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose in Italy. Taking 0-14 days post-first dose as reference, the SARS-CoV-2 infection risk subsequently decreased, reaching a reduction by 78% (incidence rate ratios (IRR): 0.22; 95% CI: 0.21-0.24) 43-49 days post-first dose. Similarly, hospitalisation and death risks decreased, with 89% (IRR: 0.11; 95% CI: 0.09-0.15) and 93% (IRR: 0.07; 95% CI: 0.04-0.11) reductions 36-42 days post-first dose. Our results support ongoing vaccination campaigns.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19 Vaccines , Hospitalization , Hospitals , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
10.
PLoS One ; 16(5): e0251768, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1229049

ABSTRACT

We assessed the impact of chest CT body composition parameters on outcomes and disease severity at hospital presentation of COVID-19 patients, focusing also on the possible mediation of body composition in the relationship between age and death in these patients. Chest CT scans performed at hospital presentation by consecutive COVID-19 patients (02/27/2020-03/13/2020) were retrospectively reviewed to obtain pectoralis muscle density and total, visceral, and intermuscular adipose tissue areas (TAT, VAT, IMAT) at the level of T7-T8 vertebrae. Primary outcomes were: hospitalization, mechanical ventilation (MV) and/or death, death alone. Secondary outcomes were: C-reactive protein (CRP), oxygen saturation (SO2), CT disease extension at hospital presentation. The mediation of body composition in the effect of age on death was explored. Of the 318 patients included in the study (median age 65.7 years, females 37.7%), 205 (64.5%) were hospitalized, 68 (21.4%) needed MV, and 58 (18.2%) died. Increased muscle density was a protective factor while increased TAT, VAT, and IMAT were risk factors for hospitalization and MV/death. All these parameters except TAT had borderline effects on death alone. All parameters were associated with SO2 and extension of lung parenchymal involvement at CT; VAT was associated with CRP. Approximately 3% of the effect of age on death was mediated by decreased muscle density. In conclusion, low muscle quality and ectopic fat accumulation were associated with COVID-19 outcomes, VAT was associated with baseline inflammation. Low muscle quality partly mediated the effect of age on mortality.


Subject(s)
Body Composition , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/mortality , Intra-Abdominal Fat/diagnostic imaging , Mass Chest X-Ray/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Tomography, X-Ray Computed/methods , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Respiration, Artificial , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , Treatment Outcome
11.
Eur Radiol ; 31(12): 9164-9175, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1224990

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The aims of this study were to develop a multiparametric prognostic model for death in COVID-19 patients and to assess the incremental value of CT disease extension over clinical parameters. METHODS: Consecutive patients who presented to all five of the emergency rooms of the Reggio Emilia province between February 27 and March 23, 2020, for suspected COVID-19, underwent chest CT, and had a positive swab within 10 days were included in this retrospective study. Age, sex, comorbidities, days from symptom onset, and laboratory data were retrieved from institutional information systems. CT disease extension was visually graded as < 20%, 20-39%, 40-59%, or ≥ 60%. The association between clinical and CT variables with death was estimated with univariable and multivariable Cox proportional hazards models; model performance was assessed using k-fold cross-validation for the area under the ROC curve (cvAUC). RESULTS: Of the 866 included patients (median age 59.8, women 39.2%), 93 (10.74%) died. Clinical variables significantly associated with death in multivariable model were age, male sex, HDL cholesterol, dementia, heart failure, vascular diseases, time from symptom onset, neutrophils, LDH, and oxygen saturation level. CT disease extension was also independently associated with death (HR = 7.56, 95% CI = 3.49; 16.38 for ≥ 60% extension). cvAUCs were 0.927 (bootstrap bias-corrected 95% CI = 0.899-0.947) for the clinical model and 0.936 (bootstrap bias-corrected 95% CI = 0.912-0.953) when adding CT extension. CONCLUSIONS: A prognostic model based on clinical variables is highly accurate in predicting death in COVID-19 patients. Adding CT disease extension to the model scarcely improves its accuracy. KEY POINTS: • Early identification of COVID-19 patients at higher risk of disease progression and death is crucial; the role of CT scan in defining prognosis is unclear. • A clinical model based on age, sex, comorbidities, days from symptom onset, and laboratory results was highly accurate in predicting death in COVID-19 patients presenting to the emergency room. • Disease extension assessed with CT was independently associated with death when added to the model but did not produce a valuable increase in accuracy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Emergency Service, Hospital , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prognosis , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Tomography, X-Ray Computed
12.
Eur Addict Res ; 27(4): 263-267, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1216839

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIM: This study assesses whether individuals with substance use disorder are at greater risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection than people in the general population. METHODS: A population-based study was conducted including 3,780 individuals, diagnosed with alcohol or other drug dependence and cared for by the addiction service (AS) in the province of Reggio Emilia. Standardised incidence ratios (SIRs) and relative 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of being tested and of being SARS-CoV-2 positive in the population of interest compared with those in the general population of Reggio Emilia were calculated. RESULTS: Both individuals with alcohol and those with other drug use disorders had a lower risk of being SARS-CoV-2 positive (SIR = 0.69; 95% CI 0.32-1.30, SIR = 0.56; 95% CI 0.24-1.10, respectively), despite higher rates of being tested than the general population (SIR = 1.48; 95% CI 1.14-1.89, SIR = 1.51; 95% CI 1.20-1.86, respectively). Among HIV-negative persons, 12.5% were positive to SARS-CoV-2, while none was positive among HIV-positive persons. HCV-infected AS clients had a higher risk of both being tested for SARS-CoV-2 (SIR = 1.99; 95% CI 1.26-2.98) and of resulting positive (SIR = 1.53; 95% CI 0.50-3.58). CONCLUSIONS: Individuals with alcohol and/or other drug use disorders are at higher risk of being tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection but at lower risk of resulting positive than the general population. Further research is warranted in order to support our findings and to address plausible factors underpinning such associations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Registries , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Risk Assessment , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
13.
Rheumatology (Oxford) ; 60(SI): SI25-SI36, 2021 10 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1185985

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To ascertain if the use of hydroxychloroquine(HCQ)/cloroquine(CLQ) and other conventional DMARDs (cDMARDs) and rheumatic diseases per se may be associated with COVID-19-related risk of hospitalization and mortality. METHODS: This case-control study nested within a cohort of cDMARD users was conducted in the Lombardy, Veneto, Tuscany and Lazio regions and Reggio Emilia province. Claims databases were linked to COVID-19 surveillance registries. The risk of COVID-19-related outcomes was estimated using a multivariate conditional logistic regression analysis comparing HCQ/CLQ vs MTX, vs other cDMARDs and vs non-use of these drugs. The presence of rheumatic diseases vs their absence in a non-nested population was investigated. RESULTS: A total of 1275 patients hospitalized due to COVID-19 were matched to 12 734 controls. Compared with recent use of MTX, no association between HCQ/CLQ monotherapy and COVID-19 hospitalization [odds ratio (OR) 0.83 (95% CI 0.69, 1.00)] or mortality [OR 1.19 (95% CI 0.85, 1.67)] was observed. A lower risk was found when comparing HCQ/CLQ use with the concomitant use of other cDMARDs and glucocorticoids. HCQ/CLQ was not associated with COVID-19 hospitalization as compared with non-use. An increased risk for recent use of either MTX monotherapy [OR 1.19 (95% CI 1.05, 1.34)] or other cDMARDs [OR 1.21 (95% CI 1.08, 1.36)] vs non-use was found. Rheumatic diseases were not associated with COVID-19-related outcomes. CONCLUSION: HCQ/CLQ use in rheumatic patients was not associated with a protective effect against COVID-19-related outcomes. The use of other cDMARDs was associated with an increased risk when compared with non-use and, if concomitantly used with glucocorticoids, also vs HCQ/CLQ, probably due to immunosuppressive action.


Subject(s)
Antirheumatic Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Rheumatic Diseases/drug therapy , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/mortality , Case-Control Studies , Drug Therapy, Combination , Female , Glucocorticoids/therapeutic use , Humans , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Odds Ratio , Population Surveillance , Rheumatic Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
14.
JAMA Intern Med ; 181(7): 1019-1020, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1173743
15.
Front Cell Dev Biol ; 8: 609204, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1106018

ABSTRACT

A subset of patients infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) developed a condition of hyper-inflammation, which can cause multi-organ damage and the more severe forms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can promote tissue regeneration and modulate immune responses and, thus, have the rational requirements to be used to counteract SARS-CoV-2-induced pneumonia and hyper-inflammation. The aim of the present study was to gain insight into possible mechanisms of action of MSCs obtained from human dental pulp [dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs)] in COVID-19 patients. We investigated the concentrations of 18 cytokines in supernatants of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) obtained from COVID-19 patients cultured in vitro alone and in contact with DPSCs. The modulation of cytokines in PBMCs was confirmed by real-time PCR. IL-6 was the sole cytokine detected in supernatants of DPSCs. In resting conditions, co-culture increased IL-1ß, IL-2, IL-5, IL-6, IL-10, IL-18, TNFα, and granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) levels. When PBMCs were activated with anti-CD3/CD28 antibody-coated beads, co-culture increased IL-6 and GM-CSF, whereas it decreased IFNγ, TNFα, IL-2, IL-5, IL-9, IL-10, IL-12 (p70), IL-17A, IL-18, IL-21, IL-23, and IL-27 levels. Concentrations of IL-1ß, IL-4, IL-13, and IL-22 were not affected. The comparison of cytokine concentrations in supernatants of PBMCs from COVID-19 patients vs. healthy subjects revealed lower concentrations of IL-10 and higher concentrations of IL-18 in supernatants of CD3/CD28-activated PBMCs from COVID-19 patients. Results are explorative but indicate that DPSCs can modulate the production of cytokines deregulated in COVID-19 patients, supporting their potential use in COVID-19.

16.
Clin Exp Rheumatol ; 39(5): 1119-1125, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1102871

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The results of the RECOVERY trial identified dexamethasone as the first pharmacological therapy that reduces mortality in patients with COVID-19. The aim of this paper is to conduct a systematic literature review on safety and efficacy of pulse glucocorticoid therapy for Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)-CoronaVirus (CoV), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)-CoV or SARS-CoV-2 infections and describe a case-series of COVID-19 patients treated with off-label pulse doses of methylprednisolone. METHODS: We performed a systematic literature review on safety and efficacy of pulse therapy for betacoronaviridae infections as described in the protocol registered on PROSPERO (CRD42020190183). All consecutive patients admitted to Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova di Reggio Emilia or Guastalla Hospital with COVID-19 between March 1st and April 30th, 2020 and treated with methylprednisolone 1 gram/day for at least three days were included in the case series. A retrospective review of available computed tomography (CT) scan and chest x-ray was performed independently by two radiologists blinded to clinical data, and discordances were resolved by consensus. RESULTS: Twenty papers were included for SARS, but only two were comparative and were included in the primary endpoint analysis. Likewise, eleven papers were included for COVID-19, four of which were comparative and were considered for the primary outcome analysis. Included studies for both SARS and COVID-19 are mostly retrospective and highly heterogeneous, with lethality ranging from 0% to 100% and ICU admission rate ranging from 9% to 100%. Fourteen patients were included in our case series, 7 males and 7 females. CONCLUSIONS: No randomised controlled trial is available yet for corticosteroids pulse-therapy defined as at least ≥500mg/day methylprednisolone in patients with emerging coronavirus pneumonia. Lethality among our cohort is high (4/14), but this finding should be interpreted with caution due to the fact that in our setting pulse-steroids were used in patients not eligible for other treatments because of comorbidities or as rescue therapy. The incidence of steroid-related adverse events seems low in our cohort. The quality of the evidence on glucocorticoid pulse-therapy in SARS, MERS and COVID-19 is poor. Randomised controlled trials are greatly needed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronaviridae , Female , Glucocorticoids/adverse effects , Humans , Male , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome
17.
PLoS One ; 16(2): e0247275, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1097208

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The aim of this secondary analysis of the TESEO cohort is to identify, early in the course of treatment with tocilizumab, factors associated with the risk of progressing to mechanical ventilation and death and develop a risk score to estimate the risk of this outcome according to patients' profile. METHODS: Patients with COVID-19 severe pneumonia receiving standard of care + tocilizumab who were alive and free from mechanical ventilation at day 6 after treatment initiation were included in this retrospective, multicenter cohort study. Multivariable logistic regression models were built to identify predictors of mechanical ventilation or death by day-28 from treatment initiation and ß-coefficients were used to develop a risk score. Secondary outcome was mortality. Patients with the same inclusion criteria as the derivation cohort from 3 independent hospitals were used as validation cohort. RESULTS: 266 patients treated with tocilizumab were included. By day 28 of hospital follow-up post treatment initiation, 40 (15%) underwent mechanical ventilation or died [26 (10%)]. At multivariable analysis, sex, day-4 PaO2/FiO2 ratio, platelets and CRP were independently associated with the risk of developing the study outcomes and were used to generate the proposed risk score. The accuracy of the score in AUC was 0.80 and 0.70 in internal validation and test for the composite endpoint and 0.92 and 0.69 for death, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Our score could assist clinicians in identifying, early after tocilizumab administration, patients who are likely to progress to mechanical ventilation or death, so that they could be selected for eventual rescue therapies.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Aged , Cohort Studies , Female , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Multicenter Studies as Topic , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Treatment Outcome
18.
Drug Saf ; 43(12): 1297-1308, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1092868

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The epidemic due to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection has been spreading globally, raising increasing concerns. There are several controversial hypotheses on the potentially harmful or beneficial effects of antihypertensive drugs acting on the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Furthermore, there is accumulating evidence, based on several observational studies, that angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) do not increase the risk of contracting SARS-CoV-2 infection. On the other hand, conflicting findings regarding the role of ACEIs/ARBs as prognosis modifiers in COVID-19 hospitalised patients have been reported. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this large-scale, retrospective cohort study was to investigate whether prior exposure to ACEIs and/or ARBs was associated with all-cause mortality among over 40,000 hospitalised COVID-19 patients compared with calcium channel blockers (CCBs), a potential therapeutic alternative. METHODS: This study was conducted using COVID-19 registries linked to claims databases from Lombardy, Veneto and Reggio Emilia (overall, 25% of Italian population). Overall, 42,926 patients hospitalised between 21 February and 21 April 2020 with a diagnosis of COVID-19 confirmed by real-time polymerase chain reaction tests were included in this study. All-cause mortality occurring in or out of hospital, as reported in the COVID-19 registry, was estimated. Using Cox models, adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) of all-cause mortality (along with 95% confidence intervals [CIs]) were estimated separately for ACEIs/ARBs and other antihypertensives versus CCBs and non-use. RESULTS: Overall, 11,205 in- and out-of-hospital deaths occurred over a median of 24 days of follow-up after hospital admission due to COVID-19. Compared with CCBs, adjusted analyses showed no difference in the risk of death among ACEI (HR 0.97, 95% CI 0.89-1.06) or ARB (HR 0.98, 95% CI 0.89-1.06) users. When non-use of antihypertensives was considered as a comparator, a modest statistically significant increase in mortality risk was observed for any antihypertensive use. However, when restricting to drugs with antihypertensive indications only, these marginal increases disappeared. Sensitivity and subgroup analyses confirmed our main findings. CONCLUSIONS: ACEI/ARB use is not associated with either an increased or decreased risk of all-cause mortality, compared with CCB use, in the largest cohort of hospitalised COVID-19 patients exposed to these drugs studied to date. The use of these drugs therefore does not affect the prognosis of COVID-19. This finding strengthens recommendations of international regulatory agencies about not withdrawing/switching ACEI/ARB treatments to modify COVID-19 prognosis.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/therapeutic use , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/therapeutic use , COVID-19/mortality , Hospitalization , Renin-Angiotensin System , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Calcium Channel Blockers/therapeutic use , Case-Control Studies , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Prognosis , Proportional Hazards Models , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , Young Adult
19.
Int Med Case Rep J ; 13: 563-567, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1076352

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is causing a massive outbreak throughout the world. In this period, diseases other than coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have not disappeared; however, it is hard for doctors to diagnose diseases that can mimic the clinical, radiological, and laboratory features of COVID-19, especially rare lung diseases such as acute eosinophilic pneumonia (AEP). We report the clinical case of a young patient who presented to the Emergency Department with respiratory failure and clinical symptoms, radiological aspects, and blood tests compatible with COVID-19; two swabs and a serology test for SARS-CoV-2 were performed, both resulted negative, but the respiratory failure worsened. Peripheral eosinophilia guided us to consider the possibility of a rare disease such as AEP, even if radiology findings were not pathognomonic. Therefore, we decided to perform a flexible bronchoscopy with bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) at the lingula, which showed the presence of eosinophilia greater than 40%. As a consequence, we treated the patient with high-dose corticosteroids that completely resolved the respiratory symptoms. This case report highlights the difficulty of making alternative diagnoses during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially for rare lung diseases such as AEP, which may have initial characteristics similar to COVID-19.

20.
Clin Epidemiol ; 12: 1337-1346, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-992953

ABSTRACT

Introduction: COVID-19 case fatality rate in hospitalized patients varies across countries and studies. Reliable estimates, specific for age, sex, and comorbidities, are needed to monitor the epidemic, to compare the outcome in different settings, and to correctly design trials for COVID-19 interventions. The aim of this study was to provide population-based survival curves of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Materials and Methods: A cohort study was conducted in three areas of Northern Italy, heavily affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection (Lombardy and Veneto Regions, and Reggio Emilia province), using a loco-regional COVID-19 surveillance system, linked to hospital discharge databases. We included all patients testing positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by RT-PCR on nasopharyngeal/throat swab samples who were hospitalized from 21 February to 21 April 2020. Kaplan-Meier survival estimates were calculated at 14 and 30 days for death in any setting, stratifying by age, sex, and the Charlson Index. Results: Overall, 42,926 hospitalized COVID-19 patients were identified. Patients' median age was 69 years (IQR: 57-79), 62.6% were males, and 6.0% had a Charlson Index ≥3. Survival curves showed that 22.0% (95% CI 21.6-22.4) of patients died within 14 days and 27.6% (95% CI 27.2-28.1) within 30 days from hospitalization. Survival was higher in younger patients and in females. The negative impact of comorbidities on survival was more pronounced in younger age groups. Conclusion: The high fatality rate observed in the study (28% at 30 days) suggests that studies should focus on death as primary endpoint during a follow-up of at least one month.

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