Medication used to treat cancer may help reduce the severity of Kovid-19 in patients: study

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Washington: Scientists have observed that a drug that is already approved for the treatment of multiple blood cancers is associated with shortness of breath and decreased hyperactive immune response in Kovid-19 patients, an advance that leads to novel coronoviruses. May be potentially therapeutic. Infection.
According to the researchers, the cancer drug esalabrutinib blocked the protein bruton tyrosine kinase (BTK) in patients with covade-19, including those at the National Cancer Institute in the US, and provided clinical benefit to a small group of them.
The study, published in a journal called Science Immunology, noted that the findings should not be considered clinical advice, and should be tested in a randomized, controlled clinical trial.
The BTK protein, according to scientists, plays an important role in the immune system, including macrophages that are immune cells that can cause inflammation by producing proteins called cytokines.
These proteins, the researchers said, act as chemical messengers that help stimulate and direct the immune response.
In some patients with severe Kovid-19, the study stated that a large amount of cytokines is released into the body at once, causing the immune system to damage the function of organs such as the lungs – a process known as “cytokine storm ” is referred to as. . ”
The current study includes a confirmed Kovid-19 diagnosis in 19 patients requiring hospitalization, with low blood-oxygen levels and evidence of inflammation.
According to the scientists, 11 of the 19 patients were receiving supplemental oxygen for a median of two days, and eight others were on a ventilator for a median of 1.5 days.
The study noted that within one to three days of receiving cancer medication, most patients in the supplemental oxygen group experienced a substantial decline in inflammation, and their breathing improved.
It stated that eight out of 11 patients were able to come out of supplemental oxygen, and were discharged from the hospital.
Although the benefits of esalabrutinib in patients on ventilators were described as less dramatic, scientists said that four out of eight patients were able to come off the ventilator, two of which were eventually discharged.
According to scientists, the ventilator patient group was highly medically diverse and included patients who had been on ventilators for a long time and had major organ dysfunction.
Two patients in this group died, he said.
Analysis of patients’ blood samples revealed that interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels, a major cytokine associated with hyperinflammation in severe covid-19, decreased after treatment with acalbutinib.
Scientists said that the count of lymphocytes, an immune cell type associated with poor outcome in Kovid-19 patients, improved rapidly in most patients.
When researchers tested the blood cells of patients with severe Kovid-19 who were not in the study, and compared to samples from healthy volunteers, they found that patients with severe Kovid-19 had higher activity and greater production of BTK protein . Of IL-6.
Based on these findings, they suggested that acalabrutinib may be effective since its target, BTK, is overexpressed in severe Kovid-19 immune cells.
However, in a note of caution, scientists also noted in the study that the most common adverse events associated with long-term acalbrutinib therapy include “low-grade headaches, diarrhea, pyorrhea, and upper respiratory tract infections.”
They stated that the safety profile of acylabrutinib in patients with severe covid-19 should be confirmed in a prospective clinical trial.
Scientists wrote in the study, “Further correlational studies will be required to understand the basis of response or resistance to BTK inhibition in patients with such advanced disease.”

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