Are MS drugs protective against COVID19


Al-Ani M, Elemam NM, Hundt JE, Maghazachi AA. Drugs for Multiple Sclerosis Activate Natural Killer Cells: Do They Protect Against COVID-19 Infection? Infect Drug Resist. 2020 Sep 22;13:3243-3254. doi: 10.2147/IDR.S269797

COVID-19 infection caused by the newly discovered coronavirus severe acute respiratory distress syndrome virus-19 (SARS-CoV-2) has become a pandemic issue across the globe. There are currently many investigations taking place to look for specific, safe and potent anti-viral agents. Upon transmission and entry into the human body, SARS-CoV-2 triggers multiple immune players to be involved in the fight against the viral infection. Amongst these immune cells are NK cells that possess robust antiviral activity, and which do not require prior sensitization. However, NK cell count and activity were found to be impaired in COVID-19 patients and hence, could become a potential therapeutic target for COVID-19. Several drugs, including glatiramer acetate (GA), vitamin D3, dimethyl fumarate (DMF), monomethyl fumarate (MMF), natalizumab, ocrelizumab, and IFN-β, among others have been previously described to increase the biological activities of NK cells especially their cytolytic potential as reported by upregulation of CD107a, and the release of perforin and granzymes. We propose that such drugs could potentially restore NK cell activity allowing individuals to be more protective against COVID-19 infection and its complications.

Maybe but the human experiment is the clinical study and there has been no consistent improvement with most of the the DMT.

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  • Fingolimod is being studied as treatment for HIV as it stops the virus replication. My question given the current theory MS is triggered by environmental and ebv, then why aren’t these dmt curing MS, as well as treating MS via antinflammatory and curing via anti viral action. Or does this imply current understanding of MS is incomplete?

    • Yes I am sure you are right. Not sure if it will be that great in HIV. Also HIV and EBV lif cycles are different

  • Well they have a good hypothesis picking a cell mostly belonging to innate immunity. But would it explain why DMTs targeting adaptive immunity has sever forms of COVID19?

    • People with co-morbidities get severe COVID….we have age, obesity, disability, heart issues and these issues are probably more relevant than the DMT
      To date the only suggestion of worsening is with anti-CD20 (however this will include progressive MS so tend to be older and have disability)

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