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Minerva Medica 2022 February;113(1):135-40

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4806.20.07225-0


lingua: Inglese

Pycnogenol®-Centellicum® supplementation improves lung fibrosis and post-COVID-19 lung healing

Maria R. CESARONE 1, Shu HU 1, Gianni BELCARO 1 , Umberto CORNELLI 1, Beatrice FERAGALLI 1, Marcello CORSI 1, Ezio BOMBARDELLI 1, Roberto COTELLESE 1, Morio HOSOI 1, Lars ROSENKVIST 2

1 IRVINE3 Labs, OOLEX Project for COVID, Department of Medical, Oral and Biotechnological Sciences, Chieti-Pescara University, Chieti, Italy; 2 Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Sonderborg Hospital, University of South Denmark, Sonderborg, Denmark

BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate the combination of Pycnogenol® (150 mg/day) (Horphag Research, London, UK) and Centella asiatica (Centellicum® 3×225 mg/day; Horphag Research) (PY-CE) for 8 months in subjects with sequelae of idiopathic interstitial pneumonia (IIP). Recently, post-COVID-19 lung disease is emerging with large numbers of patients left with chronic lung conditions. Considering the antifibrotic activity of the combination PY-CE, we also tested this supplementary management in post-COVID-19 lung patients.
METHODS: Nineteen subjects with idiopathic interstitial pneumonia (IIP) were included in the study. High Resolution CT scans at inclusion confirmed the presence of lung fibrosis: 10 patients were treated with the Pycnogenol® Centellicum® combination and 9 subjects with standard management (SM) served as controls. Oxidative stress that was very high in all subjects at inclusion, decreased significantly in the supplement group (P<0.05). The Karnofsky Performance Scale Index significantly improved in the supplement group in comparison with controls (P<0.05). The symptoms (fatigue, muscular pain, dyspnea) were significantly lower after 8 months in supplemented patients (P<0.05) as compared with controls.
RESULTS: At the end of the study, the small cystic lesions (honeycombing) and traction bronchiectasis were stable or in partial regression in 4 subjects in the supplemented group (vs. none in the control group) with a significant improvement in tissue edema in the supplemented subjects. On ultrasound lung scans the white (more echogenic) fibrotic component at inclusion was 18.5±2.2% in the images in controls vs. 19.4±2.7% in the supplement group. At the end of the study, there was no improvement in controls (18.9±2.5%) vs. a significant improvement in supplemented subjects (16.2±2.1%; P<0.05). In addition, 18 subjects with post-COVID-19 lung disease were included in the study; 10 patients were treated with the Pycnogenol® Centellicum® combination and evaluated after 4 weeks; 8 patients served as controls. Preliminary results show that symptoms associated with post-COVID-19 lung disease after 4 weeks were significantly improved with the supplement combination (P<0.05). Oxidative stress and the Karnofsky Performance Scale Index were significantly improved in the supplements group as compared with controls (P<0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: According to these observations, Pycnogenol® controls and decreases edema and Centellicum® by modulating the apposition of collagen, slows down the development of irregular cicatrization, the keloidal scarring and fibrosis. More time is needed to evaluate this effect in a larger number of post-COVID-19 patients with lung disease. This disease has affected millions of subjects worldwide, leaving severe consequences. Pycnogenol® and Centellicum® may improve the residual clinical picture in post-COVID-19 lung disease (PCL) patients and may reduce the number of subjects evolving into lung fibrosis. The evolution from edema to fibrosis seems to be slower or attenuated with this supplement combination both in Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and in PCL patients.

KEY WORDS: Pulmonary fibrosis; Pneumonia; Respiratory distress syndrome; COVID-19; Lung; Pycnogenols; Fibrosis

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