How to reduce the likelihood of coronavirus-19 (CoV-19 or SARS-CoV-2) infection and lung inflammation mediated by IL-1

Pio Conti, C. E. Gallenga, G. Tetè, Al Caraffa, G. Ronconi, A. Younes, E. Toniato, R. Ross, S. K. Kritas

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review


SARS-CoV-2, also referred to as CoV-19, is an RNA virus which can cause severe acute respiratory diseases (COVID-19), with serious infection of the lower respiratory tract followed by bronchitis, pneumonia and fibrosis. The severity of the disease depends on the efficiency of the immune system which, if it is weak, cannot stem the infection and its symptoms. The new CoV-19 spreads in the population at a rate of 0.8-3% more than normal flu and mostly affects men, since immune genes are more expressed on the X chromosome. If CoV-19 would spread with a higher incidence rate (over 10%), and affect the people who live in closed communities such as islands, it would cause many more deaths. Moreover, people from the poorest classes are most at risk because of lack of health care and should be given more assistance by the competent authorities. To avoid the aggravation of CoV-19 infection, and the collapse of the health system, individuals should remain at home in quarantine for a period of approximately one month in order to limit viral transmission. In the case of a pandemic, the severe shortage of respirators and protective clothing, due to the enormous demand and insufficient production, could lead the CoV-19 to kill a large number of individuals. At present, there is no drug capable of treating CoV-19 flu, the only therapeutic remedies are those aimed at the side effects caused by the virus, such as inflammation and pulmonary fibrosis, recognized as the first causes of death. One of the COVID-19 treatments involves inhaling a mixture of gaseous hydrogen and oxygen, obtaining better results than with oxygen alone. It was also noted that individuals vaccinated for viral and/or bacterial infectious diseases were less likely to become infected. In addition, germicidal UV radiation “breaks down” the oxygen O2 which then aggregates into O3 (ozone) molecules creating the ozone layer, capable of inhibiting viral replication and improving lung respiration. All these precautions should be taken into consideration to lower the risk of infection by CoV-19. New anti-viral therapies with new drugs should also be taken into consideration. For example, microbes are known to bind TLR, inducing IL-1, a pleiotropic cytokine, highly inflammatory, mediator of fever and fibrosis. Therefore, drugs that suppress IL-1 or IL-1R, also used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, are to be taken into consideration. to treat COVID-19. We strongly believe that all these devices described above can lead to greater survival and. therefore, reduction in mortality in patients infected with CoV-19.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-338
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biological Regulators and Homeostatic Agents
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Coronavirus
  • CoV-19
  • Fibrosis
  • Inflammation
  • Lung
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Physiology
  • Immunology
  • Oncology
  • Endocrinology
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cancer Research


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