Gamma oryzanol can prevent cytokine storm in Covid patients: Experts

Using gamma oryzanol — a powerful antioxidant — in supplement form on Covid-19 patients with obesity can significantly prevent cytokine storm in them and thereby safeguard them from negative clinical outcomes, health experts said on Sunday.

The findings suggest that rice bran supplement containing natural compounds as gamma oryzanol can be considered a coadjutant therapy to prevent the cytokine storm in Covid-19 patients with obesity conditions.

“Gamma-oryzanol has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and due to which it has the potential to be helpful in preventing negative clinical outcomes in such patients who have inflammatory tendencies,” Neha Gupta, Infectious Diseases specialist, Medanta – The Medicity told IANS.

Cytokine storm is an umbrella term encompassing several disorders of immune dysregulation and multiorgan dysfunction that can lead to multiorgan failure if inadequately treated.

The main reason for a higher prevalence of negative clinical outcomes due to Covid-19 in obese individuals is due to the cytokine storm, result from the cytokine production from both obesity and viral infection.

“Its consumption is helpful in reducing inflammation in body and if by chance that person catches Covid-19, complications in such person who is already using anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compound i.e. gamma oryzanol will be very less severe and the chance of cytokine storm will be prevented by the body’s own immune system,” said S P Byotra, Chairman of Department of Medicine, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi.

In a meta-analysis, published in the journal Obesity Reviews, a team of researchers pooled data of 399,000 patients and found that people with obesity who contracted SARS-CoV-2 were 113 per cent more likely than people of healthy weight to land in the hospital, 74 per cent more likely to be admitted to an ICU, and 48 per cent more likely to die.

According to the experts, people with obesity are more likely than normal-weight people to have other diseases that are independent risk factors for severe Covid-19, including heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes.

They are also prone to metabolic syndrome, in which blood sugar levels, fat levels, or both are unhealthy and blood pressure may be high.

“In Covid-19, patients might develop a hyperinflammatory condition and the cytokine storm syndrome, which can lead to organ dysfunctions and failure, and even, death. Very recently, a study conducted confirmed that Gamma Oryzanol is a potential therapeutic adjuvant to avoid or attenuate the cytokine storm in Covid-19 patients,” said Gupta.

A recent study from Tulane University of 287 hospitalized Covid-19 patients found that metabolic syndrome itself substantially increased the risks of ICU admission, ventilation, and death.

Studies have also shown that the gamma-oryzanol has a positive action in the treatment of some obesity-related comorbidities and attenuation of proinflammatory cytokines.