Rational Use of Tocilizumab in the Treatment of Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia

Shengyu Zhang, Lei Li, Aizong Shen, Yongwu Chen, Zhigang Qi
Clinical Drug Investigation 2020, 40 (6): 511-518
Since December 2019, a novel coronavirus pneumonia (COVID-19) has broken out in Wuhan, China and spread rapidly. Recent studies have found that ⁓ 15.7% of patients develop severe pneumonia, and cytokine storm is an important factor leading to rapid disease progression. Currently, there are no specific drugs for COVID-19 and the cytokine storm it causes. IL-6 is one of the key cytokines involved in infection-induced cytokine storm. Tocilizumab, which is the IL-6 receptor antagonist, has been approved by the US FDA for the treatment of cytokine release syndrome (CRS), is expected to treat cytokine storm caused by COVID-19 and is now in clinical trials. In this paper, we will elaborate the role of cytokine storm in COVID-19, the mechanism of tocilizumab on cytokine storm and the key points of pharmaceutical care based on the actual clinical application for COVID-19 in our hospital, the latest research reports, clinical trial progress of tocilizumab, drug instruction from the US FDA, and "Diagnosis and Treatment Plan of Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia (seventh trial edition)" in China, so as to provide reference for the treatment of COVID-19.

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