Can unconventional immunomodulatory agents help alleviate COVID-19 symptoms and severity?

Stephen W. Mamber, Steven Krakowka, Jeffrey Osborn, Lloyd Saberski, Ryan G. Rhodes, Albert E. Dahlberg, Sunthorn Pond-Tor, Kara Fitzgerald, Neal Wright, Sarah Beseme, John McMichael

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS coronavirus 2, or SARS-CoV-2) is the cause of the respiratory infection known as COVID-19. From an immunopathological standpoint, coronaviruses such as SARS-CoV-2 induce increased levels of a variety of T-helper 1 (Th1) and inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, including interleukin-1 (IL-1), IL-6, CCL2 protein, and CXCL10 protein. In the absence of proven antiviral agents or an effective vaccine, substances with immunomodulatory activity may be able to inhibit inflammatory and Th1 cytokines and/or yield an anti-inflammatory and/or Th2 immune response to counteract COVID-19 symptoms and severity. This report briefly describes the following four unconventional but commercially accessible immunomodulatory agents that can be employed in clinical trials to evaluate their effectiveness at alleviating disease symptoms and severity: low-dose oral interferon alpha, microdose DNA, low-dose thimerosal, and phytocannabinoids.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere00288-20
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Mamber et al.


  • COVID-19
  • Immunomodulatory agents
  • Interferon alpha
  • Phytocannabinoids
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Thimerosal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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