Developing a risk assessment score for patients with cancer during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic

Alice Indini, Erika Rijavec, Michele Ghidini, Monica Cattaneo, Francesco Grossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The novel coronavirus (CoV) pandemic is a serious threat for patients with cancer, who have an immunocompromised status and are considered at high risk of infections. Data on the novel CoV respiratory disease (coronavirus disease 2019 [COVID-19]) in patients with cancer are still limited. Unlike other common viruses, CoVs have not been shown to cause a more severe disease in immunocompromised subjects. Along with direct viral pathogenicity, in some individuals, CoV infection triggers an uncontrolled aberrant inflammatory response, leading to lung tissue damage. In patients with cancer treated with immunotherapy (e.g. immune checkpoint inhibitors), COVID-19 may therefore represent a serious threat. After a thorough review of the literature on CoV pathogenesis and cancer, we selected several shared features to define which patients can be considered at higher risk of COVID-19. We combined these clinical and laboratory variables, with the aim of developing a score to weight the risk of COVID-19 in patients with cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-50
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020


  • Cancer
  • Coronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Immunotherapy
  • Infection
  • Oncology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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