Itolizumab : COVID-19 Emergency Drug

Context :

  • Recently, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has cleared Itolizumab for restricted emergency use in Covid-19 cases.

About the Drug

  • Itolizumab is a drug used to treat severe chronic plaque psoriasis.
  • Itolizumab is for emergency use only in the treatment of Cytokine Storm Syndrome (CSS) in moderate to Severe Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome(ARDS) patients due to Covid-19.
  • It will be manufactured and formulated as an intravenous (IV) injection at the bio-manufacturing facility in Bengaluru.
  • Itolizumab is the first novel biologic therapy to be approved anywhere in the world for treating patients with moderate to severe Covid-19 complications.

Back to Basics

Cytokine Storm Syndrome (CSS)

  • an uncontrolled attempt by the immune system to neutralise the virus that often ends up damaging the lungs and other organs and even death.

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS)

  • a disease in which the lung loses its capacity to expand further.

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