Therapeutic strategies in pneumonia: going beyond antibiotics

Eur Respir Rev. 2015 Sep;24(137):516-24. doi: 10.1183/16000617.0034-2015.


Dysregulation of the innate immune system drives lung injury and its systemic sequelae due to breakdown of vascular barrier function, harmful hyperinflammation and microcirculatory failure, which contribute to the unfavourable outcome of patients with severe pneumonia. A variety of promising therapeutic targets have been identified and numerous innovative therapeutic approaches demonstrated to improve lung injury in experimental preclinical studies. However, at present specific preventive or curative strategies for the treatment of lung failure in pneumonia in addition to antibiotics are still missing. The aim of this mini-review is to give a short overview of some, but not all, adjuvant therapeutic strategies for pneumonia and its most important complications, sepsis and acute respiratory distress syndrome, and briefly discuss future perspectives.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate / drug effects
  • Immunologic Factors / therapeutic use*
  • Lung / drug effects*
  • Lung / immunology
  • Lung / microbiology
  • Lung / pathology
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / complications
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / diagnosis
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / immunology
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / microbiology
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / therapy*
  • Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Immunologic Factors