Peginterferon Lambda-1a for treatment of outpatients with uncomplicated COVID-19: a randomized placebo-controlled trial

Nat Commun. 2021 Mar 30;12(1):1967. doi: 10.1038/s41467-021-22177-1.

Abstract

Type III interferons have been touted as promising therapeutics in outpatients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We conducted a randomized, single-blind, placebo-controlled trial (NCT04331899) in 120 outpatients with mild to moderate COVID-19 to determine whether a single, 180 mcg subcutaneous dose of Peginterferon Lambda-1a (Lambda) within 72 hours of diagnosis could shorten the duration of viral shedding (primary endpoint) or symptoms (secondary endpoint). In both the 60 patients receiving Lambda and 60 receiving placebo, the median time to cessation of viral shedding was 7 days (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.81; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.56 to 1.19). Symptoms resolved in 8 and 9 days in Lambda and placebo, respectively, and symptom duration did not differ significantly between groups (HR 0.94; 95% CI 0.64 to 1.39). Both Lambda and placebo were well-tolerated, though liver transaminase elevations were more common in the Lambda vs. placebo arm (15/60 vs 5/60; p = 0.027). In this study, a single dose of subcutaneous Peginterferon Lambda-1a neither shortened the duration of SARS-CoV-2 viral shedding nor improved symptoms in outpatients with uncomplicated COVID-19.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antiviral Agents / administration & dosage*
  • COVID-19 / drug therapy*
  • COVID-19 / virology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections, Subcutaneous
  • Interleukins / administration & dosage*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Outpatients
  • Polyethylene Glycols / administration & dosage*
  • SARS-CoV-2 / drug effects
  • SARS-CoV-2 / physiology
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Treatment Failure
  • Virus Shedding / drug effects
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Antiviral Agents
  • Interleukins
  • peginterferon lambda-1a
  • Polyethylene Glycols

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT04331899