Patient resting in a hospital bed

NIHR to investigate new potential Covid-19 treatment

A potential new treatment for hospitalised Covid-19 patients, using an anti-inflammatory arthritis drug, is being investigated by the NIHR-supported RECOVERY trial.

As an anti-inflammatory drug, baricitinib could potentially block the signalling activity of cytokine molecules which contribute to the hyper-inflammatory state caused by severe Covid-19 infections.

The researchers will investigate whether the drug reduces the risk of death for patients with Covid-19, whether the treatment reduces hospital stay lengths and whether it can reduce the risk of hospitalised patients requiring mechanical ventilation.

The trial will randomise 2,500 participants to receive baricitinib - with those results then compared against a further 2,500 participants receiving only standard care.

Professor Martin Landray, co-Chief Investigator for the RECOVERY trial from the University of Oxford, said: “Inflammation is a fundamental feature of Covid-19 and the RECOVERY trial has already found that one anti-inflammatory drug, dexamethasone, can reduce deaths in the most severely ill patients with Covid-19.

“Baricitinib is widely used to treat rheumatoid arthritis.

“By including baricitinib in the RECOVERY trial, we will be able to generate robust evidence on whether it helps tackle the worst consequences of Covid-19.”

Professor Peter Horby, co-Chief Investigator, added: “Baricitinib will be the tenth potential Covid-19 treatment to be tested through RECOVERY and we will continue testing new drugs as fast as we possibly can.”

Another arthritis drug treatment, tocilizumab and a second drug called sarilumab, also showed positive signs in improving intensive care Covid-19 patients, as part of the separate REMAP-CAP clinical trial.

NHE May/June 21

NHE May/June 21

The needs of district and community nursing

NHE’s May/June 2021 edition focuses on all the different aspects of the NHS which help bring together an effective, efficient health service. These include optimising the NHS estate, outsourcing & procurement, introducing digital innovation and integrating health and social care.


View all videos
BMC Whitepaper


How well do the NHS understand digital potential?

Recently we have been gathering primary data direct from those within the NHS on modernising NHS technology and the challenges faced around resource, training and service management.

Download the full whitepaper and read the full findings in our exclusive report to learn more.

Finger on the Pulse

Ep 14. Health messaging is a science, Professor Craig Jackson

On Episode 14 of NHE's Finger on the Pulse podcast, we're joined by Professor Craig Jackson, Professor of Occupational Health Psychology
Birmingham City University to discuss the coronavirus pandemic, the health messaging around it and how those in power have missed a trick by overlooking the key role of psychology in informing the public of restrictions, measures and the ever-changing situation

More articles...

View all