Cytokine storm modulation in COVID-19: a proposed role for vitamin D and DPP-4 inhibitor combination therapy (VIDPP-4i).
Immunotherapy. 2021 06 ;13(9):753-765. Epub 2021 Apr 28. PMID: 33906375
Marcelo Maia Pinheiro
A dysregulated immune response characterized by the hyperproduction of several pro-inflammatory cytokines (a.k.a. 'cytokine storm') plays a central role in the pathophysiology of severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). In this Perspective article we discuss the evidence for synergistic anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties exerted by vitamin D and dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, the latter being a class of antihyperglycemic agents used for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes, which have also been reported as immunomodulators. Then, we provide the rationale for investigation of vitamin D and DPP-4 inhibitor combination therapy (VIDPP-4i) as an immunomodulation strategy to ratchet down the virulence of SARS-CoV-2, prevent disease progression and modulate the cytokine storm in COVID-19.