Potential Cytoprotective Activity of Ozone Therapy in SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19

Antioxidants (Basel). 2020 May 6;9(5):389. doi: 10.3390/antiox9050389.


(1) Background: The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) disease (COVID-19) in China at the end of 2019 has caused a large global outbreak. Systemic ozone therapy (OT) could be potentially useful in the clinical management of several complications secondary to SARS-CoV-2. The rationale and mechanism of action has already been proven clinically in other viral infections and has been shown in research studies to be highly effective at decreasing organ damage mediated by inflammation and oxidative stress. This review summarizes the OT studies that illustrate the possible cytoprotective mechanism of action of ozone and its physiological by-products in target organs affected by SARS-CoV-2. (2) Methods: This review encompasses a total of 74 peer-reviewed original articles. It is mainly focused on ozone as a modulator of the NF-κ B/Nrf2 pathways and IL-6/IL-1β expression. (3) Results: In experimental models and the few existent clinical studies, homeostasis of the free radical and antioxidant balance by OT was associated with a modulation of NF-κ B/Nrf2 balance and IL-6 and IL-1β expression. These molecular mechanisms support the cytoprotective effects of OT against tissue damage present in many inflammatory diseases, including viral infections. (4) Conclusions: The potential cytoprotective role of OT in the management of organ damage induced by COVID-19 merits further research. Controlled clinical trials are needed.

Keywords: Keap1/Nrf2/ARE pathway; NF-κ B; Nrf2; SARS-CoV-2; ozone therapy 1.

Publication types

  • Review