Understanding Interstitial Pneumonia in COVID-19 and Inhibition of CTGF
Recent data indicate the presence of interstitial pneumonia in the majority of hospitalized patients infected with COVID-19. The interstitial pneumonia is usually bilateral and leads to decreased blood oxygen levels, respiratory failure, intubation, and, ultimately, death in a significant proportion of patients who require mechanical ventilation. Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) may promote vascular leakage and lead to pulmonary edema. Administration of pamrevlumab, an anti-CTGF monoclonal antibody, may mitigate or reverse this edema, and thus improve oxygenation in patients with COVID-19-induced pneumonia. The Italy and U.S. trials will determine if pamrevlumab treatment of hospitalized COVID-19 patients, both during the acute phase of infection and longer term with improved outcomes in interstitial lung fibrosis.