Pre-emptive or early adjuvant simvastatin therapy in elderly patients with infection and sepsis

Jaimin M Patel, Hannah Greenwood, Georgia Walton, Janet Lord, David Thickett, Elizabeth Sapey

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BACKGROUND\nThe incidence, severity, morbidity, and mortality associated with sepsis increases with age, and statin treatment improves outcomes during infection. We characterised the effect of age and acute infection on key neutrophil functions, assessed whether physiologically relevant doses of simvastatin altered neutrophil functions, and, if benefits were seen, when statins could be used during septic infection. \n\nMETHODS\nNeutrophils extracted from the whole blood of healthy volunteers and patients with a lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI), pneumonia, or sepsis were assessed for migratory accuracy, phagocytosis, and production of neutrophil extracellular traps (NET) before and after in-vitro treatment with simvastatin. In addition, neutrophil function was assessed in healthy elderly volunteers, who were receiving simvastatin (80 mg/day for 2 weeks) or placebo as part of a crossover, double-blind, randomised controlled trial. Here we present data for neutrophil migration. \n\nFINDINGS\nNeutrophils from healthy volunteers (n=70, aged 21–94 years) showed preserved chemokinesis (random movement) but reduced chemotaxis (directed migration) (r2=−0·48, p
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S79
JournalThe Lancet
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014


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