Eli Lilly and Company and the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases will study baricitinib, a Lilly rheumatoid arthritis drug, as a potential treatment for people with COVID-19. It’s thought that baricitinib’s anti-inflammatory effect could help reduce the cytokine storm that COVID-19 can trigger in patients. Ruxolitinib, a cancer treatment from Novartis and Incyte, is also being tested for its potential to dampen the cytokine storm.
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This story was updated on April 20, 2020, to correctly state the partners that market ruxolitinib. They are Novartis and Incyte, not Novartis and Regeneron.