‘Itolizumab’ a life saving drug in COVID 19
‘Itolizumab’ a life saving drug in COVID 19 : The drug Itolizumab has been previously known to be used in treatment of the autoimmune disease ‘psoriasis’. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease in which the patient develops scales,itches, dry patches over the skin. It was first launch in India in 2013 for treatment of plaque psoriasis with the name ‘ALZUMAb’.
These drug now got “restricted emergency use” approval by the ” Drug controller general of India” ( DGCI ), for treating covid-19 patients with moderate-to-severe acute respiratory distress syndrome(ARDs).
It is developed by the Bengaluru based biopharmaceutical company ‘Biocon‘, team collaboration with the ” center for molecular immunology”, cuba. It will again hit the Indian market with the name ‘ALZUMAb’. It is the first Nobel biologic therapy drug to be approved anywhere in the world for treatment of the patients with moderate-to-severe covid-19 complications.
Itolizumab will be manufactured as well as formulated as an intravenous injection at Biocon’s biomanufacturing facility at Biocon park, Bengaluru.
What is Itolizumab ?
Itolizumab is an anti CD 6, monoclonal humanized antibody of IG g1 class. Now, monoclonal antibodies are the group of antibodies produced from an progenitor immune cell by the immune system. Humanized antibodies are the antibodies derived from the the non human host with some modification in the protein. itolizumab are specialised to bind with a specific protein present upon the immune cells.
How it works ?
CD 6( cluster of differentiation), is an cell adhesion protein present upon the t lymphocyte cell (a type of WBC ), in the immune system. CD6 is a costimulatory molecule required for optimal T-cell stimulation by the antigen-presenting cells (APCs).T lymphocytes poses vital function in the immunity. CD 6 is required for activation of T cells during an infection.
In covid-19 infection the patient experiences inflammation in the body it occurs due to the sudden cytokines storm. Cytokines are the proteins produced by T cells ,B cells etc.which conveys signal to the immune cells in order to produce immune response. During covid-19 infection the cytokines like IL-6, TNF alpha over populates the body causing a overdrive known as cytokine release syndrome (CRS). Activated immune cells then start destroying WBC, RBC, permanent tissues , as a result that organs don’t get enough blood and gets damaged .
Itolizumab binds with the CD 6 cytokine receptor and blocks it. As a result the t cell activation is downregulated . Reduction of T cells also reduces the production of cytokines.
This treatment is very impactful in reducing the mortality, over hundred people in Maharashtra, Gujarat Delhi , with covid-19 have been cured with it.
It is an injection of 25 mg / 5ml solution. Which can be used in emergency treatment of cytokines releasing syndrome CRS, in acute respiratory distress syndrome ADRS.
The therapy will cost Rs 32000, which is given in 4 vials with each vial of cost Rs 8000.
Information By – Ritom