Research seeks to better understand the virus to develop treatments, scientists say.
Published on: 10-12-2020
Loma Linda University Health (LLUH) is part of a national collaborative effort to better, and more quickly, understand COVID-19 and how treatments might be developed to help populations most affected.
Physicians at the Loma Linda University Medical Center intensive care unit (ICU) are participating in the Harvard University–led study. LLUMC is one of 68 hospitals contributing to the ongoing research that has now been published in two medical journals.
LLUH has successfully contributed data on 57 patients treated in the medical ICU of the more than 5,000 patients in the national registry from March 4 to June 30.
Results have been published in JAMA Internal Medicine and the British Medical Journal. Two more articles have been accepted for publication, according to Bryant Nguyen, John E. Peterson Professor of Medicine, chief of the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, and Loma Linda University’s primary investigator for the study.
“We are pleased about the opportunity to be involved in this study, so our data can contribute to a better understanding of how to best treat and care for patients who have contracted COVID-19,” Nguyen said. “By coming together, we join forces against this formidable foe.”
Led by Harvard’s David Leaf, the principal investigator of the study, researchers have examined predictors of survival on severely sick patients with COVID-19 who have been admitted to an ICU in various hospitals around the country. Factors include a patient’s age, body mass index, gender, and liver and kidney function, as well as hospital resources. Researchers are also examining the effectiveness of various ICU treatments, including the drug Tocilizumab if administered within two days of admission.
The research is ongoing, Nguyen said, and LLUH ICU staff and researchers will continue participating in the study. As many as a dozen articles will be submitted for publication in journals, he said.