Anakinra, a promising treatment for severe cases of Covid-19

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This treatment has given interesting preliminary results in around fifty serious cases.

Three-quarters of people who received daily subcutaneous injections for 10 days avoided death or going into intensive care.
Three-quarters of people who received daily subcutaneous injections for 10 days avoided death or going into intensive care. JOEL SAGET / AFP

After so many other fragile results with molecules repositioned with little result against Covid-19, could anakinra be a game-changer? Administered between March 24 and April 6 at Saint-Joseph Hospital (Paris) to about fifty patients suffering from a severe form of Covid-19, this immunomodulatory treatment (marketed under the name of Kineret by the laboratory Swedish Sobi – Swedish Orphan Biovitrum) gave interesting preliminary results.

“Out of nine patients treated with anakinra in our home, only one went to intensive care, which was encouraging

Pr Achille Aouba, head of the internal medicine department at the CHU de Caen

Three-quarters of people who received daily subcutaneous injections for 10 days avoided death or going into intensive care, compared to a quarter of a control group of 44 patients treated earlier in the same hospital. These figures were published in The Lancet Rheumatology, a review which had published a little earlier, in early May, a small Italian study of 29 patients going more or less in the same direction. Two other very short series of a few patients invited

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