Tocilizumab: From Rheumatic Diseases to COVID-19

Author(s): Alberto Raiteri, Fabio Piscaglia, Alessandro Granito, Francesco Tovoli*

Journal Name: Current Pharmaceutical Design

Volume 27 , Issue 13 , 2021


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Abstract:

Tocilizumab is a humanised interleukin-6 receptor-inhibiting monoclonal antibody that is currently approved for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and other immune-related conditions. Recently, tocilizumab has been investigated as a possible treatment for severe coronavirus-induced disease 2019 (COVID-19). Despite the lack of direct antiviral effects, tocilizumab could reduce the immune-induced organ damage caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2) infection. Until recently, most reports on tocilizumab for COVID-19 included a limited number of patients, preventing an overall evaluation of its efficacy and safety for this specific condition. Therefore, we reviewed the literature regarding the physiopathological rationale of tocilizumab for COVID-19 and its outcomes. We searched the MEDLINE database with the string “(SARS-CoV-2 OR coronavirus OR COVID-19 OR MERS- cov OR SARS-cov) AND (IL-6 OR interleukin 6 OR tocilizumab)”. While the scientific rationale supporting tocilizumab for COVID-19 is solid, the evidence regarding the outcomes remains controversial. Available data and results from ongoing trials will provide useful information in the event of new COVID-19 outbreaks or future pandemics from different coronaviruses.

Keywords: Tocilizumab, COVID-19, SARS-CoV2, tocilizumab, monoclonal antibodies, interleukin-6, cytokines.

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Article Details

VOLUME: 27
ISSUE: 13
Year: 2021
Published on: 19 May, 2021
Page: [1597 - 1607]
Pages: 11
DOI: 10.2174/1381612827666210311141512
Price: $65

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