What are the interactions between COVID-19 therapies and anti-cancer drugs?

Bottom Line:

Currently, the scientific literature does not have enough evidence to suggest specific side-effects to using anti-cancer drugs in combination with COVID-19 therapies. There are some drugs that should be avoided to avoid side effects and interactions with COVID-19 drugs but more research needs to be done to determine how these cancer drugs interact in the context of a COVID-19 infection. 


Di Lorenzo, G. et al. COVID 19 therapies and anti-cancer drugs: A systematic review of recent literature. Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology (2020). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.critrevonc.2020.102991

Date Published:

21 May 2020


In this study, the authors used temporal and spatial modeling to assess the effect of four intervention scenarios on the size and progression of the COVID-19 outbreak in Singapore. These scenarios included isolation measures for infected individuals and quarantining of family members, quarantine plus school closure, quarantine plus workplace distancing, and quarantine plus school closure and workplace distancing. They compared these interventions with the effect of implementing no interventions and assumed that 7.5% of infections were asymptomatic. They built models based on three different basic reproduction numbers – numbers of individuals infected by one infected person. They found that implementing quarantine, school closure, and workplace distancing together was the most effective in reducing the number of infections in a span of 80 days (99.3-78.2% decrease, depending on the basic reproduction number).

Summary by: Brintha Sivajohan