Characteristic of Chronic Plaque Psoriasis Patients Treated with Biologics in Italy during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Risk Analysis from the PSO-BIO-COVID Observational Study

Marina Talamonti, Marco Galluzzo, Andrea Chiricozzi, Pietro Quaglino, Gabriella Fabbrocini, Paolo Gisondi, Angelo Valerio Marzano, Concetta Potenza, Andrea Conti, Aurora Parodi, Stefano Piaserico, Federico Bardazzi, Giuseppe Argenziano, Franco Rongioletti, Luca Stingeni, Giuseppe Micali, Francesco Loconsole, Maria Teresa Rossi, Maria Rita Bongiorno, Claudio FelicianiPietro Rubegni, Paolo Amerio, Maria Concetta Fargnoli, Paolo Pigatto, Paola Savoia, Steven Paul Nisticò, Sandra Giustini, Andrea Carugno, Serafinella Patrizia Cannavo', Giulia Rech, Francesca Prignano, Annamaria Offidani, Maurizio Lombardo, Iris Zalaudek, Luca Bianchi, Ketty Peris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background The susceptibility of patients with chronic plaque psoriasis and the risks or benefits related to the use of biological therapies for COVID-19 are unknown. Few data about prevalence, clinical course and outcomes of COVID-19 among psoriatic patients were reported. The aims of this study were 1) to assess the prevalence and severity of COVID-19 in psoriatic patients treated with biologic agents during the first phase of the emergency (22 February to 22 April 2020) in Italy, and 2) to report the clinical outcomes of patients who have been exposed to individuals with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. Methods Patients with moderate-to-severe chronic plaque psoriasis, aged ≥18 years and undergoing treatment with biologic agents as of 22 February 2020, were eligible to be included in PSO-BIO-COVID study. Demographic and clinical characteristics of patients using any biologic for psoriasis treatment between 22 February and 22 April 2020 were registered. For all confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19, data about concomitant disease, ongoing therapies, and comorbidities were also reported. Results A total of 12,807 psoriatic patients were included in the PSO-BIO-COVID study. In this cohort twenty-six patients (0.2%) had a swab confirmation of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Eleven patients required hospitalization and two died. 125 of 12807 patients (1.0%) with exposure to a patient with COVID-19 under quarantine or active health surveillance, were reported. Conclusion The incidence of COVID-19 observed in our cohort of psoriatic patients (0.2%) is similar to that seen in the general population (0.31%) in Italy. However, the course of the disease was mild in most patients. Biological therapies may likely lessen "cytokine storm" of COVID-19, which sometimes lead to multiple organ failure, ARDS, and death.

Original languageEnglish
JournalExpert Opinion on Biological Therapy
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Nov 20 2020


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