A review of recent advances for managing COVID-19.

Key Messages

This comprehensive review evaluates potential treatments for COVID-19 patients.

Based on an analysis of the results of three retrospective studies and a case series study, famotidine is identified as a promising drug for treating COVID-19.

Famotidine is thought to interfere with the cellular entry/infection and replication of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy

Publication Date: August 27, 2021
Peer Reviewed: Yes
Publication Type: Review/Commentary/Letter
DOI: https://www.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2021.112107

Recent advances in management of COVID-19: A review

Soraya Mouffak, Qamar Shubbar, Ekram Saleh, Raafat El-Awady


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused and is still causing significant mortality and economic consequences all over the globe. As of today, there are three U.S Food and Drug administration (FDA) approved vaccines, Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Janssen COVID-19 vaccine. Also, the antiviral drug remdesivir and two combinations of monoclonal antibodies are authorized for Emergency use (EUA) in certain patients. Furthermore, baricitinib was approved in Japan (April 23, 2021). Despite available vaccines and EUA, pharmacological therapy for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 is still highly required. There are several ongoing clinical trials investigating the efficacy of clinically available drugs in treating COVID-19. In this study, selected novel pharmacological agents for the possible treatment of COVID-19 will be discussed. Point of discussion will cover mechanism of action, supporting evidence for safety and efficacy and reached stage in development. Drugs were classified into three classes according to the phase of viral life cycle they target. Phase I, the early infective phase, relies on supportive care and symptomatic treatment as needed. In phase II, the pulmonary phase, treatment aims at inhibiting viral entry or replication. Drugs used during this phase are famotidine, monoclonal antibodies, nanobodies, ivermectin, remdesivir, camostat mesylate and other antiviral agents. Finally, phase III, the hyper-inflammatory phase, tocilizumab, dexamethasone, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), and melatonin are used. The aim of this study is to summarize current findings and suggest gaps in knowledge that can influence future COVID-19 treatment study design.