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1.
Comput Biol Med ; 142: 105220, 2022 Jan 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1611676

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has severely stressed the sanitary systems of all countries in the world. One of the main issues that physicians are called to tackle is represented by the monitoring of pauci-symptomatic COVID-19 patients at home and, generally speaking, everyone the access to the hospital might or should be severely reduced. Indeed, the early detection of interstitial pneumonia is particularly relevant for the survival of these patients. Recent studies on rheumatoid arthritis and interstitial lung diseases have shown that pathological pulmonary sounds can be automatically detected by suitably developed algorithms. The scope of this preliminary work consists of proving that the pathological lung sounds evidenced in patients affected by COVID-19 pneumonia can be automatically detected as well by the same class of algorithms. In particular the software VECTOR, suitably devised for interstitial lung diseases, has been employed to process the lung sounds of 28 patient recorded in the emergency room at the university hospital of Modena (Italy) during December 2020. The performance of VECTOR has been compared with diagnostic techniques based on imaging, namely lung ultrasound, chest X-ray and high resolution computed tomography, which have been assumed as ground truth. The results have evidenced a surprising overall diagnostic accuracy of 75% even if the staff of the emergency room has not been suitably trained for lung auscultation and the parameters of the software have not been optimized to detect interstitial pneumonia. These results pave the way to a new approach for monitoring the pulmonary implication in pauci-symptomatic COVID-19 patients.

2.
J Clin Med ; 10(24)2021 Dec 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580660

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines can cause transient local and systemic post-vaccination reactions. The aim of this study was to report uveitis and other ocular complications following COVID-19 vaccination. The study included 42 eyes of 34 patients (20 females, 14 males), with a mean age of 49.8 years (range 18-83 years). The cases reported were three herpetic keratitis, two anterior scleritis, five anterior uveitis (AU), three toxoplasma retinochoroiditis, two Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada (VKH) disease reactivations, two pars planitis, two retinal vasculitis, one bilateral panuveitis in new-onset Behçet's disease, three multiple evanescent white dot syndromes (MEWDS), one acute macular neuroretinopathy (AMN), five retinal vein occlusions (RVO), one non-arteritic ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION), three activations of quiescent choroidal neovascularization (CNV) secondary to myopia or uveitis, and one central serous chorioretinopathy (CSCR). Mean time between vaccination and ocular complication onset was 9.4 days (range 1-30 days). Twenty-three cases occurred after Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination (BNT162b2 mRNA), 7 after Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine (ChAdOx1 nCoV-19), 3 after ModernaTX vaccination (mRNA-1273), and 1 after Janssen Johnson & Johnson vaccine (Ad26.COV2). Uveitis and other ocular complications may develop after the administration of COVID-19 vaccine.

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
6.
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.

7.
Adv Skin Wound Care ; 2021 Oct 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462505

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: A novel SARS-CoV-2 infection, causing the disease designated as COVID-19 principally affecting the respiratory tract, lung at alveolar and interstitial levels, has recently emerged. Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is an autoimmune connective disease characterized by vascular abnormalities and diffuse and progressive fibrosis of the skin and internal organs. Raynaud phenomenon occurs in virtually all patients affected by SSc and in most cases represents the onset symptom of the disease, since it could appear several years before the overt illness. Although the exact pathophysiologic pathways leading to RP and SSc are still unknown, several infectious agents, especially viruses, have been suggested as possible triggering factors. Here authors describe the first case of a Raynaud phenomenon secondary to Systemic sclerosis following SARS-CoV2 infection.

8.
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
9.
Adv Healthc Mater ; 10(20): e2100955, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1368425

ABSTRACT

An overview of cytokine biosensing is provided, with a focus on the opportunities provided by organic electronic platforms for monitoring these inflammation biomarkers which manifest at ultralow concentration levels in physiopathological conditions. Specifically, two of the field's state-of-the-art technologies-organic electrochemical transistors (OECTs) and electrolyte gated organic field effect transistors (EGOFETs)-and their use in sensing cytokines and other proteins associated with inflammation are a particular focus. The overview will include an introduction to current clinical and "gold standard" quantification techniques and their limitations in terms of cost, time, and required infrastructure. A critical review of recent progress with OECT- and EGOFET-based protein biosensors is presented, alongside a discussion onthe future of these technologies in the years and decades ahead. This is especially timely as the world grapples with limited healthcare diagnostics during the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)pandemic where one of the worst-case scenarios for patients is the "cytokine storm." Clearly, low-cost point-of-care technologies provided by OECTs and EGOFETs can ease the global burden on healthcare systems and support professionals by providing unprecedented wealth of data that can help to monitor disease progression in real time.


Subject(s)
Biosensing Techniques , COVID-19 , Biomarkers , Electrolytes , Humans , Inflammation/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Transistors, Electronic
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.
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
12.
JAMA Intern Med ; 181(7): 1019-1020, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1173743
13.
Clin Med Insights Circ Respir Pulm Med ; 15: 11795484211001349, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1145424

ABSTRACT

Objective: COVID-19 pandemic represents a serious health emergency that severely compromised our Public Health system, resulting in a rapid and forced reorganization and involved the management of chronic diseases too. The Scleroderma Unit of Modena and Reggio Emilia follows more than 600 patients suffering from systemic sclerosis (SSc) and recently became the referral center (HUB) in Emilia-Romagna for this rare connective tissue disease. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the extent by which the lockdown and the pandemic has impacted the activity of admissions to Scleroderma Unit of Modena and Reggio Emilia. Methods: Our daily clinical activity is characterized by outpatient visits, videocapillaroscopy exam, ulcers treatment, therapeutic infusions in day hospital regimen, multidisciplinary visits following our dedicated SSc care pathway, and clinical trials. Our activity has been quickly rescheduled to ensure the proper assistance to our SSc patients during the COVID-19 pressure. Results: The use of telemedicine has certainly assured a robust continuity of health care. Furthermore, telephone pre-triage, nurse/medical triage, proper physical distancing and use of PPE/DPI allowed us to re-organize and continue SSc daily activity. Specifically, therapeutic infusions in day hospital regimen and outpatient visits, including ulcers treatment, was guaranteed and maximized. Conclusion: The management of scleroderma patients by an expert specialist reference center is crucial in order to ensure continuity of care and pursue the best SSc practice.

14.
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
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.

17.
Clin Exp Rheumatol ; 38(6): 1215-1222, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-958715

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To identify predictors of clinical improvement and intubation/death in tocilizumab-treated severe COVID19, focusing on IL6 and CRP longitudinal monitoring. METHODS: 173 consecutive patients with severe COVID-19 pneumonia receiving tocilizumab in Reggio Emilia province Hospitals between 11 March and 3 June 2020 were enrolled in a prospective cohort study. Clinical improvement was defined as status improvement on a six-category ordinal scale or discharge from the hospital, whichever came first. A composite outcome of intubation/death was also evaluated. CRP and IL-6 levels were determined before TCZ administration (T0) and after 3 (T3), and 7 (T7) days. RESULTS: At multivariate analysis T0 and T3 CRP levels were negatively associated with clinical improvement (OR 0.13, CI 0.03-0.55 and OR 0.11, CI 0.0-0.46) (p=0.006 and p=0.003) and positively associated with intubation/death (OR 17.66, CI 2.47-126.14 and OR 5.34, CI: 1.49-19.12) (p=0.01 and p=0.004). No significant associations with IL-6 values were observed. General linear model analyses for repeated measures showed significantly different trends for CRP from day 3 to day 7 between patients who improved and those who did not, and between patients who were intubated or died and those who were not (p<0.0001 for both). ROC analysis identified a baseline CRP level of 15.8 mg/dl as the best cut-off to predict intubation/death (AUC = 0.711, sensitivity = 0.67, specificity = 0.71). CONCLUSIONS: CRP serial measurements in the first week of TCZ therapy are useful in identifying patients developing poor outcomes.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections , Pneumonia, Viral , Acute-Phase Proteins , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , Humans , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
18.
JAMA Intern Med ; 181(1): 24-31, 2021 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-880239

ABSTRACT

Importance: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is threatening billions of people worldwide. Tocilizumab has shown promising results in retrospective studies in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia with a good safety profile. Objective: To evaluate the effect of early tocilizumab administration vs standard therapy in preventing clinical worsening in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 pneumonia. Design, Setting, and Participants: Prospective, open-label, randomized clinical trial that randomized patients hospitalized between March 31 and June 11, 2020, with COVID-19 pneumonia to receive tocilizumab or standard of care in 24 hospitals in Italy. Cases of COVID-19 were confirmed by polymerase chain reaction method with nasopharyngeal swab. Eligibility criteria included COVID-19 pneumonia documented by radiologic imaging, partial pressure of arterial oxygen to fraction of inspired oxygen (Pao2/Fio2) ratio between 200 and 300 mm Hg, and an inflammatory phenotype defined by fever and elevated C-reactive protein. Interventions: Patients in the experimental arm received intravenous tocilizumab within 8 hours from randomization (8 mg/kg up to a maximum of 800 mg), followed by a second dose after 12 hours. Patients in the control arm received supportive care following the protocols of each clinical center until clinical worsening and then could receive tocilizumab as a rescue therapy. Main Outcome and Measures: The primary composite outcome was defined as entry into the intensive care unit with invasive mechanical ventilation, death from all causes, or clinical aggravation documented by the finding of a Pao2/Fio2 ratio less than 150 mm Hg, whichever came first. Results: A total of 126 patients were randomized (60 to the tocilizumab group; 66 to the control group). The median (interquartile range) age was 60.0 (53.0-72.0) years, and the majority of patients were male (77 of 126, 61.1%). Three patients withdrew from the study, leaving 123 patients available for the intention-to-treat analyses. Seventeen patients of 60 (28.3%) in the tocilizumab arm and 17 of 63 (27.0%) in the standard care group showed clinical worsening within 14 days since randomization (rate ratio, 1.05; 95% CI, 0.59-1.86). Two patients in the experimental group and 1 in the control group died before 30 days from randomization, and 6 and 5 patients were intubated in the 2 groups, respectively. The trial was prematurely interrupted after an interim analysis for futility. Conclusions and Relevance: In this randomized clinical trial of hospitalized adult patients with COVID-19 pneumonia and Pao2/Fio2 ratio between 200 and 300 mm Hg who received tocilizumab, no benefit on disease progression was observed compared with standard care. Further blinded, placebo-controlled randomized clinical trials are needed to confirm the results and to evaluate possible applications of tocilizumab in different stages of the disease. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04346355; EudraCT Identifier: 2020-001386-37.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Hospital Mortality , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , Respiration, Artificial/statistics & numerical data , Respiratory Insufficiency/therapy , Aged , Blood Gas Analysis , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/physiopathology , Disease Progression , Early Termination of Clinical Trials , Female , Fever , Hospitalization , Humans , Italy , Male , Medical Futility , Middle Aged , Receptors, Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Respiratory Insufficiency/physiopathology , SARS-CoV-2
19.
Contemp Clin Trials ; 98: 106165, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-816323

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Pneumonia is the most frequent complication of COVID-19, due to an aberrant host immune response that is associated with an acute respiratory distress syndrome, and, in most critical patients, with a "cytokine storm". IL-6 might play a key role in the cytokine storm and might be a potential target to treat severe and critical COVID-19. Tocilizumab is a recombinant humanized monoclonal antibody, directed against IL-6 receptor. METHODS: This multicentre study project includes a single-arm phase 2 study and a further parallel cohort, enrolling hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia and oxygen saturation at rest in ambient air ≤93% or requiring respiratory support. Patients receive tocilizumab 8 mg/kg (up to 800 mg) as one intravenous administration. A second administration (same dose) after 12 h is optional. Two-week and one-month lethality rates are the co-primary endpoints. Sample size planned for the phase 2 study is 330 patients. The parallel cohort will include patients who cannot enter the phase 2 study because being intubated from more than 24 h, or having already received tocilizumab, or the phase 2 study has reached sample size. Primary analysis will include patients enrolled in the phase 2 study. Results of the primary analysis will be validated in the prospective cohort of patients consecutively registered after phase 2 closure from March 20 to March 24, who were potentially eligible for the phase 2 study. CONCLUSION: This trial aims to verify the safety and efficacy of tocilizumab in the Italian population with COVID-19 pneumonia and respiratory impairment. EudraCT Number: 2020-001110-38; Clinicaltrials.gov ID NCT04317092.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , COVID-19 , Cytokine Release Syndrome , Pneumonia, Viral , Receptors, Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Administration, Intravenous , Adult , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/adverse effects , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/physiopathology , COVID-19/therapy , Clinical Trials, Phase II as Topic , Cytokine Release Syndrome/drug therapy , Cytokine Release Syndrome/etiology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Drug Administration Schedule , Drug Monitoring , Female , Humans , Immunologic Factors/administration & dosage , Immunologic Factors/adverse effects , Male , Multicenter Studies as Topic , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/etiology , Treatment Outcome
20.
Crit Care ; 24(1): 589, 2020 09 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-802272

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The severity of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection is extremely variable, ranging from asymptomatic patients to those who develop severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). As for now, there are still no really effective therapies for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Some evidences suggest that tocilizumab (TCZ) may avoid the progression of severe COVID-19. The aim of this retrospective case-control study was to analyze the efficacy and safety of TCZ in patients with COVID-19 ARDS undergoing noninvasive mechanical ventilation (NIV). METHODS: Seventy-nine consecutive patients with severe COVID-19 pneumonia and worsening acute respiratory failure (ARF) were admitted to the Pulmonology Unit of Azienda USL of Reggio Emilia-IRCCS. All patients were inflamed (elevated CRP and IL-6 levels) and received NIV at admission according to the presence of a pO2/FiO2 ratio ≤ 200 mmHg. The possibility of being treated with TCZ depended on the drug availability. The primary outcome was the in-hospital mortality rate. A secondary composite outcome of worsening was represented by the patients who died in the pulmonology unit or were intubated. RESULTS: Out of 79 patients, 41 were treated with TCZ. Twenty-eight patients received intravenous (IV) TCZ and 13 patients received subcutaneous (SC) TCZ. In-hospital overall mortality rate was 38% (30/79 patients). The probabilities of dying and being intubated during the follow-up using Kaplan-Meier method were significantly lower in total patients treated with TCZ compared to those of patients not treated with TCZ (log-rank p value = 0.006 and 0.036, respectively). However, using Cox multivariate analyses adjusted for age and Charlson comorbidity index only the association with the reduced risk of being intubated or dying maintained the significance (HR 0.44, 95%CI 0.22-0.89, p = 0.022). Two patients treated with TCZ developed cavitating lung lesions during the follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: This study shows that TCZ treatment may be effective in COVID-19 patients with severe respiratory impairment receiving NIV. More data on safety are required. Randomized controlled trials are needed to confirm these results.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Noninvasive Ventilation , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/therapy , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , Aged , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Case-Control Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
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