ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0619.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: monoclonal antibodies; ARDS; cytokine storm syndrome; inflammation
Online: 22 April 2021 (20:58:22 CEST)
Background: Cytokine storm in COVID-19 is heterogenous. There are at least three subtypes: cytokine release syndrome (CRS), macrophage activation syndrome (MAS), and sepsis. Methods: A retrospective study comprising 276 patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. All patients were tested for ferritin, interleukin-6, D-Dimer, fibrinogen, calcitonin, and C-reactive protein. According to the diagnostic criteria, three groups of patients with different subtypes of cytokine storm syndrome were identified: MAS, CRS or sepsis. In each group, treatment results were assessed depending on whether or not tocilizumab was used. Results: MAS was diagnosed in 9.1% of the patients examined, CRS in 81.8%, and sepsis in 9.1%. Median serum ferritin in patients with MAS was significantly higher (5894 vs. 984 vs. 957 ng/ml, p <0.001) than in those with CRS or sepsis. Hypofibrinogenemia and pancytopenia were also observed in MAS patients. In CRS patients, a higher mortality rate was observed among those who received tocilizumab, 21 vs. 10 patients (p=0.043), RR = 2.1 (95% CI 1.0-4.3). In MAS patients, tocilizumab decreased the mortality, 13 vs. 6 patients (p=0.013), RR = 0.50 (95% CI 0.25-0.99). Сonclusions: Tocilizumab therapy in patients with COVID-19 and CRS was associated with increased mortality, while in MAS patients it contributed to reduced mortality.