Critically important documentation suggests that for many patients who die of Covid-19, may be due to an overreaction of their own immune system, rather than the virus itself. This cytokine storm by cytokines such as IL-2, IL-6, IL-7, GSCF, IP10, MCP1, MIP1A, and TNFα, in the lung is followed by edema, dysfunction of air exchange, acute respiratory distress syndrome, acute cardiac injury and secondary bacterial infection and death.
The risk factors from China recently published in Lancet showed that 59% of the cases causing severe illness in patients suffer from sepsis, and that all patients who died of the disease also had sepsis. Avoiding the cytokine storm may be the key for treatment of COVID-19 infected patients with respiratory failure.
Placenta-derived decidual stromal (DSC) has been shown to have immune modulatory and anti-inflammatory function. It has been shown to be safe in cell-based therapy especially in basic and clinical trial on the immune-mediated inflammatory disease graft versus-host disease (GvHD). We intend to perform a phase I/IIa study to investigate the safety and efficiency of intravenous infusion of DSC for respiratory failure induced by COVID-19.
The study is in collaboration with Hans Messner Allogeneic Blood and Marrow Transplant Program, University of Toronto, Canada (PI Jonas Mattsson) and Uppsala University Hospital (PI Mats Remberger).