Lopinave/Litonawe (LPV/r) reduced mortality in studies of SARS and MERS: uncertain if it is effective for patients with COVID-19

Added March 20, 2020

Citation: Jiang H, Deng H, Wang Y, Liu Z, Sun M, Zhou P, Xia Q, Lu C D, Zeng J. The possibility of using Lopinave/Litonawe (LPV/r) as treatment for novel coronavirus 2019-nCov pneumonia: a quick systematic review based on earlier coronavirus clinical studies. Chinese Journal of Emergency Medicine 2020: 29: Epub ahead of print

What is this? Like COVID-19, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) are acute respiratory diseases caused by a coronavirus. Antiviral therapy with Lopinave/Litonawe (LPV/r) was used to treat patients with these earlier coronaviruses and might be considered as a treatment for COVID-19.

In this rapid systematic review, the authors searched Chinese and English literature databases for research of any design that compared LPV/r versus either placebo or standard care for patients with SARS or MERS, published between January 2003 and 24 January 2020. They identified 2 cohort studies (both for SARS patients), 1 case report (for MERS patients) and 1 clinical guideline (for MERS patients).

What works: Nothing noted.

What doesn’t work: Nothing noted.

What’s uncertain: Although early use of LPV/r regimen reduced the mortality of SARS and MERS, and reduced steroids dosing in the included studies, it is uncertain if it will be an effective treatment for patients with COVID-19.


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